Android O has been in developer beta for months, and it looks like the final version might be ready to launch soon, with Google launching an eclipse-themed teaser website counting down toward August 21st. Along with the countdown, the site also features some handy eclipse-tracking tools, including a cute animation of what to expect the eclipse to look like in your location.
Google is saying that the countdown will be for the official reveal of Android O, so it seems safe to say that we’ll be finding out either when Android O releases or what on earth Google will be calling the OS when the timer concludes on 2:40pm EST on the 21st. Given that the last Android O beta release from back in July was a nearly final release candidate version, and that Google is running out of time to hit its promised “summer” release, a launch next week would make sense, although we’ll have to wait until the countdown ends to find out for sure. And considering that we still don’t know what Android O is called (Oreo? Octopus? Oatmeal Cookie? Orangina? WHY WON’T YOU JUST SAY GOOGLE), it’s possible that Google may just be bundling that in to the upcoming announcement.
I will note as part of my descent into Android naming madness that as someone who has become deeply and personally invested in the naming scheme for Android O, it is of some concern to me that there doesn’t seem to be anything on the page that seems to obviously hint towards a new “tasty treat”, which Google has used up until now as a basis for OS names, aside from a reference to “super (sweet) new powers” and a couple of constellations of old snack-themed mascots. Instead, the countdown page is mostly themed toward the eclipse, which is pointedly not a word that starts with the letter “O”.
Although... the countdown is themed to the solar eclipse on August 21st. An eclipsed sun looks like a black disc, surrounded by a ring of white, just like an Oreo. Is that what this all is leading to? Is there some vast Google / Nabisco / Oreo / eclipse conspiracy? Am I putting way too much though into what snack food Google names its phone software after? We’ll find out when the timer runs out next week.