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Google announces Android O developer preview

Going along with the timing of last year’s Android N announcement, Google has officially announced Android O.

The developer preview for Android O is also available now and just like the developer previews before it, O doesn’t have a version number or name yet. Most people are predicting that Android O will be called Android Oreo (but nobody really knows at this point).

Let’s get into the details of the Android O developer preview:

The preview images are available now (or really soon) for the Nexus 5X, 6P, Nexus Player, Pixel C, Pixel and Pixel XL (the Nexus 6 and 9’s OS support ended back in October, so they won’t be getting Android O).

Google says the preview images are strictly development images and can be very buggy and unstable and as of right now, aren’t suitable for daily use.

The first major change is background limits which is to help improve user battery life and device performance. There will be automatic limits on what apps can do in the background.

Next is notification channels, which will let developers bundle the type of notifications that their apps sends out into types. This is done via a standard API for much more control over the type of notifications that you receive. There will also be a new notification grouping behaviour and a new notification aesthetic.

The next new feature is Autofill APIs, which means that apps such as LastPass will have access on a system-level to be able to fill in your usernames and passwords for you.

Picture In Picture (PIP) was initially only on Android TV boxes running Nougat but now it’s coming to phones and tablets. There is also a new windowing feature that lets apps use a native overlay window instead of a system alert. There is also support for multi-display, so you’ll be able to do stuff on a remote display.

Android O will also bring native support for Bluetooth aptX, which is supposed to provide high-quality Bluetooth audio codecs.

If you’re one those people who like to use a keyboard with Android, you’ll be happy to hear that Google is adding better keyboard navigation support in Android O.

Also in Android O is adaptive icons which will help you integrate better with your device’s UI, so it can change icons in different shapes based on the system display.

On the Android developer website, it breaks down the timeline and updates release schedule.

  • Preview 1 (initial release, alpha) (this is the one that was released today)
  • Preview 2 (incremental update, beta)
  • Preview 3 (incremental update, beta)
  • Preview 4 (final APIs and official SDK, Play publishing)
  • Preview 5 (near-final system images for final testing)
  • Final release to AOSP and ecosystem

There tons of other stuff that I haven’t mentioned and there will surely be more features that Google has yet to announce. Also some features that you find in the Android O developer preview could change or be removed in future previews or before the final release which is scheduled for Q3 2017.

There was also new wallpaper that can with the developer preview:

 

Source: Android Developers Blog




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