Google has said its KitKat 4.4 update will be available for its older Nexus 4 smartphone and Nexus 7 and 10 tablet devices and the Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One Google Play edition in the coming weeks.
The KitKat update has been launched alongside the new Nexus 5 device from Google as it seeks to challenge Apple in the smartphone market with its latest low cost but high-spec device. The Android KitKat 4.4 update contains a number of improvements, the firm said.
Writing on a Google blog the firm's senior vice president for Android, Chrome and Apps, Sundar Pichai said that the KitKat version of Android offered a raft of benefits to help get more people online in the future.
"Building a platform that makes mobile phones accessible for everyone has always been at the heart of Android. Until now, some lower-end Android phones couldn't benefit from more recent Android releases due to memory constraints," he said.
"With KitKat, we've slimmed down Android’s memory footprint by doing things like removing unnecessary background services and reducing the memory consumption of features that you use all the time."
Pichar said doing this means that the newest version of Android can run on devices that have just 512MB of RAM, to help the firm "reach for the next billion smartphone users".
There was no word on when other Android devices will receive the update but Google will be looking to avoid the issues faced by Apple after it unveiled its iOS 7 operating system which has caused huge frustrations for many of its users.
Dan Worth is the news editor for V3 having first joined the site as a reporter in November 2009. He specialises in a raft of areas including fixed and mobile telecoms, data protection, social media and government IT. Before joining V3 Dan covered communications technology, data handling and resilience in the emergency services sector on the BAPCO Journal.