The latest version of Google’s Android mobile operating system will be called Android KitKat, and yes, it is named after the chocolate wafer candy bar known for its four breakable pieces.
"We couldn't imagine a better name for our Android K release than the chocolate treat that's been a favorite go-to snack among the team since the early days of Android," says Marc Vanlerberghe, director of Android Marketing.
KitKat is owned by The Hershey Co. in the United States and the Nestle Co. internationally, and Google worked with both companies to secure the rights to the name.
"We are proud and excited to have one of the world's leading mobile innovators pair up with one of America's favorite chocolate brands," says Jennifer Podhajsky, v.p. — U.S. chocolate, The Hershey Co. "Google's choice to name their next Android platform release KitKat brings together two well-known icons from pop culture and technology and gives the classic jingle of 'Gimme a Break' a whole new meaning in the tech world."
To show how serious the partnership is between KitKat and Google, a giant statue of the Android made out of the iconic KitKat bars currently resides at Hershey's headquarters in Hershey, Pa.
And, KitKat and Google are pairing up to offer fun prizes to consumers.
As part of the U.S. campaign, KitKat brand and Google will offer consumers the chance to win 1,000 Nexus 7 tablets, 150,000 Google Play $5.00 credits and 20,000 coupons for a free 8-oz. bag of KitKat Minis. To enter the promotion, consumers can look for a code inside the wrapper of specially marked KitKat 1.5-oz bars, where they will need to visit android.com/kitkatfor their chance to win. The promotion will run between Sept. 6- Jan. 31, 2014.
To celebrate the announcement, the brand is also launching a KitKat USA Facebook page and a KitKat USA Google+ page to connect with KitKat U.S. fans and keep them up-to-date on the latest details of the Android KitKat campaign.
The Google announcement is also part of a larger global partnership with Nestle. To mark the release of the Android KitKat, more than 50 million specially branded KitKat bars will be available in 19 countries, including Australia, Brazil, Germany, India, Japan, Middle East, Russia, and the United States.
The packs will lead consumers to the website android.com/kitkat, where they will have the opportunity to win prizes including a limited number of Google Nexus 7 tablets, and credits to spend in Google Play, Google's online store for apps, games, music, movies, books and more. A small number of Android robot-shaped KitKat bars will also be offered as prizes in selected markets.
"We're excited to announce this partnership with Android, the world's most popular mobile platform, which will help us to enable even more Kit Kat fans to enjoy their break," says Patrice Bula, Nestlé's Head of Marketing.
Android KitKat is version 4.4 of Google's mobile operating system, developed by the company's engineers under sweet-themed code names that began with Android Cupcake 1.5 in 2009. The codenames have continued alphabetically through to Android Jelly Bean 4.3, released earlier this year.
The news that the letter 'K' will be dedicated to the iconic Kit Kat brand will surprise many technology pundits, who expected the latest version to be named 'Android Key Lime Pie.'