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It appears that Google is currently releasing the public Android software development kit (SDK), which lets developers and manufactures build on its operating system for upcoming phones.

[Update: This is confirmed. The code has now been released.]

The move comes as HTC prepares to release the first Google Android phone. HTC also just won approval from the FCC for the phone.

We found out about the new SDK, because Google is changing and updating several files and permissions within the SDK that didn’t sync everything correctly from the older version to the new. The SDK uses a code for a Linux kernel, on which the operating system is based. Under its license, Google is required to update the existing kernel to any newer one. Google’s move to update is significant, because an update of the kernel strongly suggests that the new SDK is being launched. Here’s what we know: A user (see screenshot below) was able to download a file which is requiring the new SDK. But because the user who downloaded the file still had the old SDK, an error message appeared in the development environment Eclipse.

Similarly, Google is updating its GIT, which are instructions on how to manage code revisions. The update itself is nothing special, but since you don’t see anything updated yet — which will surely happen given the above indications — this suggests that something is in progress.

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