This lesson offers an introduction to Android devices, including Android help and step-by-step instructions on getting started.
You're probably here because you already have an Android device or are thinking about buying one. Congratulations—a new smartphone or tablet can be useful, empowering, and also lots of fun!
Unlike the iPhone or iPad (which are only available in a few different models), there are hundreds of Android devices to choose from. That's part of what makes them so appealing. You're bound to find something you like, whether you're shopping on a budget or looking for the latest high-end device.
If you're wondering why there are so many choices, it may help to understand what Android is. Technically, it's an operating system for smartphones and tablets. Many different companies make devices that are powered by Android, including Samsung, HTC, LG, and other lesser-known brands. That's why every Android device is different—each manufacturer likes to put its own spin on it.
Android devices vary based on the manufacturer and sometimes even your mobile carrier. For instance, take a look at the two Android phones below. What do you see?
Some differences are obvious, but others are less apparent. Here are some examples:
This is a pretty good example of the type of variety you can expect from Android devices. There will always be differences in hardware, including things like outer appearance, storage capacity, and camera quality. There will also be differences in software (in other words, the on-screen features) that can affect your experience with Android in general.
There's one more thing to be aware of when it comes to Android devices. Not only are there different phones and tablets to choose from, but there are also different versions of the Android operating system. This can affect everything from the layout of your screen to the availability of certain features. To learn more, check out our FAQs.