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MediaTek announces partnership with Google for shipping pre-certified Android builds to OEMs


GMS Express program aims to reduce the amount of time required to get an Android device through Google’s compatibility certification tests.

Google and MediaTek have partnered up to announce GMS Express, a new program designed to provide approved Android software solutions, including Google Mobile Services (GMS) and Google Compatibility Test Suite (CTS) certification, to device makers.

Google has some requirements in place to assure that Android API’s and hardware functionality is consistent across all Android devices. After designing and manufacturing an Android device, it needs to pass through Google’s compatibility certification tests. The process can take up to three months to complete and the manufacturers are in a limbo until then with their time, money and resources stuck. It is so because it’s not allowed to ship with Google apps pre-installed if it fails the certification tests.

The GMS Express program aims to reduce the time taken for the certification process from three months to one month or even less. This means that the OEMs can make their devices come to market quicker and at a lower cost. Device makers will also be able to build devices using MediaTek SoC’s that will come pre-installed with GMS, which includes Gmail, Google Play, Google Search and more.

“Android has enabled a healthy ecosystem of diverse OEM manufacturers who deliver compelling devices at all price points throughout the world,” said Jim Kolotouros, VP, Global Android Partnerships at Google. “We are excited by MediaTek’s leadership in connection with the GMS Express program, and enabling the OEM ecosystem to develop high-quality devices more quickly, more cheaply, and more easily.”

The OEMs with MediaTek chipset will also receive frequent security patches to reduce risks of their device being hacked. End consumers will now have a secure and compliant version of Android across devices due to the easier certification process. MediaTek has become the first SoC manufacturer to support Google’s GMS Express program.