Anyone who owns an iOS phone knows it; they have an iPhone, an iPad, or an iPod Touch. Apple is great at branding and great at capturing mindshare for their handheld devices.
Anyone who owns a Blackberry knows it; they have a Blackberry Torch, Curve, Bold, etc. Research In Motion has also done a great job of branding for their handsets and the Blackberry secure communications infrastructure that stands behind them.
But it’s different if you have an Android phone. ‘Android’ isn’t a hardware brand, it’s the name of the operating system that Google licenses to many, many handset manufacturers. So consumers don’t buy ‘an Android’, they buy an HTC Evo, a Motorola Droid, a Samsung Epic, a T-Mobile MyTouch, etc, etc. Now, despite what TV advertising might make you believe, Apple has been steadily losing marketshare to the onslaught of Android devices. Recently some cellphone carriers have even begun offering Android handsets as one of the ‘free’ phones you can get when you sign up or renew your service contract. So, ironically, while Android devices have become much more common, it’s gotten even easier to have one without realizing it.
The easiest way to tell if you have an Android phone in your hand is to see if your phone has the Google Play Store app. When you power on your phone, do you have a touchscreen full of little icons? If not, you probably have a ‘feature phone’ not a smartphone at all. If you do have icons, scan around on the ‘phonetop’ for a little white shopping bag icon. Press the icon and the Google Play Store app will launch. Congratulations, you have an Android phone!
If you are browsing now on the phone you want to check, you can go to http://whatismyandroidversion.com/ and instantaneously learn not only if you have Android, but what version.