It is all it claims in the link above and more. UI is very intuitive and Google has certainly catapulted its platform from a cheap just-do-the-job to a real iPhone rival. It is not just the platform but all the Google goodies coming with it, Gmail, Chrome beta, Google Reader they are just a real treat.
I have had Android since 18 months ago and have a free app on the market for listening to podcasts (called PodcastCharger). To be honest, before this I was seriously thinking of leaving Android to another platform (probably Windows phone) since some have already done it because of lack of updates support but I think Google have woken up to the sound of discontent and are pushing for upgrades. I think with this release, that is it... no one can catch Android in market share anymore.
Things that stand out for me in this release are:
- Support for right-to-left languages: being a Persian/Iranian by birth, I read a lot of Farsi material but could not on my phone. The support was surprising and frustratingly lacking in all previous versions but finally Google has risen to the challenge fixed provided this feature.
- Great UI experience: UX is miles better - especially with the new Google apps. UI flows nicely and is consistent unlike before where you felt it is just cobbled together by some amateurish geek. It certainly looks flat and metro so I think Microsoft can take some of the credit.
- Nice new features: menus have been simplified, new features have been added or just made available and usable (such as data usage)
- Snazzy and slick: there is a particular minimalism in the views which is just chic.
- NFC and direct Wi-Fi: there seems to be new features (which I have not yet used) allowing peer-to-peer communication which I think will really make it attractive for non-Android users to buy into.
In one word, I am impressed. And enjoying my Ice Cream Sandwich. [I have a Samsung Galaxy S2]