Google has announced its Go edition of Android Pie, the follow-up on the first Oreo Go edition for phones with as little as 512MB of RAM. The first of these phones, including HMD's Nokia 1, went on sale earlier in April.
Android Go is part of Google's effort to convince feature-phone owners to switch up to an Android smartphone and expand Google's mobile reach.
To help users in regions with less mobile coverage, the Go edition also came with Google apps such as such as Data Saver, the Files Go file-sharing app, YouTube Go, and a Go version of Google Assistant, as well as Find My Device and Google Play Protect.
The Go edition of Android Pie 9.0 will be available at some point this fall, which is also when Google aims to release the full version of Android Pie to devices in its beta program from HMD/Nokia, OnePlus, Sony, Oppo, and Essential.
The key improvements in this version of Android Go include an extra 500MB of available storage out of the box, faster boot times, the addition of verified boot, and a dashboard for keeping an eye on data usage.
Google says it's "fully redesigned" its Go edition Google apps. Google Go, for example, can read out webpages and highlights each word as it's spoken.
YouTube Go should use less data and features a gallery mode for downloads. Maps Go is getting navigation with turn-by-turn directions for all modes of transport and walking. Files Go, as Google revealed in June, is capable now of file transfers at 490Mbps.
Google hasn't revealed whether the roughly 200 Go edition phones already available today will be getting the Android Pie update, but it says more than 100 manufacturers plan to release Go edition phones by the end of 2018, presumably with Android Pie Go.
"Keep an eye out for the first devices offering the new Pie (Go edition) experience to hit shelves later this fall," Google notes in a blog.
Among the currently available Oreo Go edition phones, the cheapest one that Google highlights is the $30 Mobicell Astro, a Chinese-made phone sold in Africa by South Africa mobile network MTN.