Smart cameras are finally starting to show up, but according to outgoing Android boss Andy Rubin, they could have been around for years. Speaking at an event in Tokyo, Rubin said Android was originally conceived as an operating system for cameras, not phones.
“The exact same platform, the exact same operating system we built for cameras, that became Android for cellphones,” said Rubin. He went on to show slides from an investor pitch he made in 2004, which was focused on wired and wireless cameras linked to an “Android Datacenter,” reports PC World.
In the end though, Google stepped in and made Android what it is today. Rubin said his team eventually decided digital cameras simply weren’t a big enough market. He also said he was worried about Microsoft and Symbian, not Apple, which turned out to be quite wrong.
Rubin also talked about the decision to make Android completely free for phone makers.
“We wanted as many cellphones to use Android as possible. So instead of charging $99, or $59, or $69, to Android, we gave it away for free, because we knew the industry was price sensitive,” he said.
The approach worked and as a result, Android quickly became a runaway success, with a market share of more than 70 percent last year. Sadly though, Android cameras are few and far between, but at least they are finally hitting the market.