Google wants manufacturers to use Android in their products, and the company has no problem with them theming the software up all they want, as long as they adhere to a few ground rules. Going forward, explicitly mentioning that their devices are powered by Android will be one of them. How? By explicitly placing the words "powered by Android" at the bottom of bootup screens.
As first reported by Geek.com, Google is enforcing this via the latest Google Mobile Services license that manufacturers must abide by in order to ship devices with access to the Play Store or Google's suite of first-party apps. We've come across confirmation. The guidelines below don't explicitly mention that the logo is mandated, but our source has confirmed to us that it is. We've reached out to Google, but the company has refused to comment.
Update: Here's another image that further details the placement requirements.
You can see the new logo on the Galaxy S5 in this hands-on video below.
The HTC One M8 also has this logo, though it's mysteriously missing from the Verizon version of the device. It looks like someone didn't get the memo.
This change shouldn't just apply to new devices. Those currently on the market should start displaying the logo after receiving any future OTAs. We'll have to wait and see, as updates currently going out had their code frozen a long time ago, too soon to implement the change.
This is one way to get average consumers to recognize that they're using an Android device. Though, given how rarely people have to restart their devices these days, it remains to be seen how much effect this will have. Still, we'll get behind anything that cuts down on how often people refer to all Android devices as Droids, Samsungs, or Galaxies.