Google has revealed Jelly Bean Android 4.1 – the latest version of its Android system software.
Google described the code as the “fastest and smoothest” version of its mobile system to date.
It has also added the ability to type using speech recognition without needing to be connected to the net.
Google revealed that 400 million Android devices have now been activated, four times as many as last year.
It added that the number is growing at a rate of 12 machines every second.
The update also aims to take advantage of some of the company’s recent search innovations including its Knowledge Graph – an effort to offer useful information rather than links in response to queries.
This has been integrated into its voice search service so a smartphone can respond to demands such as “how tall is the Seattle space needle” or “show me pictures of pygmy marmosets”.
The effort poses competition to Apple’s Siri service.
The firm also unveiled Google Now – which triggers useful information without the user having to ask for it.
Examples given included proposing the best route home based on a device’s knowledge of when a user typically leaves work and the current traffic conditions.
In addition it suggests restaurants and their best dishes when the user walks down the street and offers updates about favorite sports teams based on previous searches.
Google said it aimed to release over-the-air updates to existing devices to let them run the new software from mid-July.