Cotton Candy offers Android on platforms other than phones and tablets


I myself am quite surprised (pleasantly, of course) at the progress that Google’s Android mobile operating system has made since it was introduced just a few years back. I clearly remember the first few Android smartphones from HTC that did not really do that well in the market, but over the years, things have changed a whole lot – and now, more than 50% of smartphones in the US are running on some version of Android or another. In fact, Google intends to bring Android’s presence to just about everywhere, and FXI Technologies’ Cotton Candy USB device is said to aid Google’s quest.

Basically, FXI’s idea is to deliver an ultra-lean computer that is confined within the physical limitations of a small USB stick. Using it is simple – as long as the device supports USB storage, plug in the Cotton Candy and you’re good to go as it registers as a USB drive. Once that is done, you are able to run the Android OS in a secure environment within your desktop, thanks to the presence of a Windows/OSX/Linux-compatible virtualization client that is embedded in the device itself.

Once the Cotton Candy is stuck into a computer, the Android operating system will appear in a virtualized window on your desktop. There is another positive to this particular USB key as well – it will feature an HDMI connector, letting you stick it to your TV and use Android on the big screen to boot. Of course, to take full advantage of this situation, you are required to have some sort of secondary input device, including a Bluetooth mouse/keyboard combo for you to get work done.

Just what kind of system specifications does it have? Well, for starters, there is a 1.2GHz ARM Cortex A9-based processor in addition to ARM’s quad-core Mali GPU and 1GB RAM. Seems rather impressive for something so small, where it is good enough to run Android 2.3 Gingerbread. I wonder just how far the Android operating system is going to permeate itself across multiple platforms and devices, but the Cotton Candy is tipped to arrive only sometime in the middle of 2012 for $200 thereabouts.


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