This year, Google is giving us a sneak peek at its latest smartphone OS, called Android P. This Android P is a big upgrade from 8.0 Oreo. This update is near-final, according to the company, with the final Android 9.0 release expected in August. In other words, this version of Android P should be pretty polished. For developers, the third public beta of Android P is the same as the fourth developer preview of Android P.
It completely changes Android’s navigation system. Android P is the first time Google’s heavily relying on gestures for navigating the UI, and in their current form, they work as follows:
- Tap the Home button/pill to go home
- Swipe up to access the recent apps page
- Swipe up twice or do a long swipe for the app drawer
- The Back button only appears in certain apps/menus when it’s needed
This combination of taps and swipes is a bit confusing right now, but we’re expecting Google to roll-out a more refined version of this in later Developer Previews or in the final build. You can still use the traditional three buttons in Developer Preview 2 and 3 if the gestures aren’t your thing, but it’s rather obvious that this is the future Google wants for Android.
App shortcuts are everywhere
In the Android Nougat, Google introduced us to App Shortcuts everywhere for the first time. Holding down on an app icon to quickly access certain elements of it can be genuinely useful at times, and with Android P, Google’s taking these to the next level with App Actions and Slices.
App Actions will try to determine what you’ll do next with your phone and give you recommend shortcuts for doing so within the app drawer, Assistant, and more. For example, if you watch song on youtube each day with breakfast, you might see an App Shortcut in your app drawer for a searching song on YouTube during the morning.
On the other hand, Slices will allow you to perform more complex actions from the Assistant or Google Search. In the example Google gave at I/O, searching “I want to book a ride” will give you a special link to call a ride and some related apps ready to install on your mobile.
Adding new emoji
In Developer Preview 3, Google added a ton of new emojis to keep your conversations bright and colorful.
Although we won’t run through the entire list, some of the highlights include red hair, superhero, face with three hearts, bagel with cream cheese, mooncake, lobster, and llama.
There are also improvements to existing emoji, including two new gender-neutral family and couple designs and updated looks for the bacon, salad, turtle, and cricket emojis.
Fingerprint sensors and face unlock systems make it easier than ever to access private information on our phones, and in Android P Developer Preview 3, Google added a brand-new standard for this called “BiometricPrompt API“.
There is new API, developers no longer have to create their own dialog for using biometric systems with their apps. This isn’t something you’ll notice in day-to-day use, this is an important upgrade from Android P.
Change navigation bar
Ther is one of the biggest change in the navigation bar. Android P now allows you to use the Home button to access recent apps. With the updated Home gesture, you’ll see your home button replaced with a small pill-shaped icon at the bottom of the screen. You can swipe up to access apps or see all open apps. It will also serve as a slider to help with navigation.
Dashboard is a new feature that helps track the amount of time you spend on your device. With Dashboard, you can see how long you’re using your phone to send messages, stream content, surf the internet, or even make calls.
With certain apps like YouTube, you can even receive recommendations to take a screen break. You’ll also be able to set up screen time limits for specific apps.
Adaptive Brightness uses A.I. to determine your preferred brightness settings. Once it understands your preferences, it can then make the necessary adjustments depending on your lighting conditions.
One of the biggest changes in notifications. Specifically, Google wants to make notifications a little more useful meaning you’ll be able to do more without having to open a full app. Now, from notifications, Google will suggest smart replies, allow you to attach photos and stickers, and type your own replies. It all comes about because of Google’s new “MessagingStyle” notification style.
Improved battery life
New Android update comes promised battery improvements. Google has made lots of changes in Android P to maximize your battery life. Android P also features an improved Battery Saver app. Android P makes it easier to enable Battery Saver as your battery begins to drain.
Instead of the option to enable Battery Saver at 5 or 15 percent, the Android P update features a slider, allowing you to enable Battery Saver once your battery reaches 70 percent or below. And as an added bonus, the updated Battery Saver no longer features the obnoxious orange bar — it’s been replaced by a persistent notification icon.
You’ll also find Adaptive Battery in Android P. Adaptive Battery learns how you use apps and will restrict battery use for apps you don’t use very frequently.
When is Android P coming out?
With the Developer Preview announced in March, and a Public Beta announced on 8 May at Google I/O 2018, we should be on track for a mid- to late-August release as in previous years.
What will Android 9.0 be called?
Since the early days of Android updates have been named after sweet treats and in alphabetical order. So far we’ve seen:
- Android Donut (v1.6)
- Android Eclair (v2.0)
- Android Froyo (v2.2)
- Android Gingerbread (v2.3)
- Android Honeycomb (v3.0)
- Android Ice Cream Sandwich (v4.0)
- Android Jelly Bean (v4.1)
- Android KitKat (v4.4)
- Android Lollipop (v5.0)
- Android Marshmallow (v6.0)
- Android Nougat (v7.0)
- Android Oreo (v8.0)
- Android P??????(v9.0)