Google keeping up its tradition of releasing the developer preview of its next version of Android in March, has finally given us the sneak peek into what the new Android P will entail.
Word of caution, the first developer preview mostly focuses on the changes that will affect the developers but we can definitely draw conclusions as to what changes the users can expect in the upcoming Android P.
The new Android P will come with a plethora of changes so let’s dive into the few that we have uncovered so far from the surface:
Redesigned Notifications and Settings
The new Android P will come with a few changes in its user interface including the quick setting and notification drawer which have been slightly tweaked and appear with rounded corners.
Additionally, the icons in the quick settings are rounded and become blue when they are enabled. The icons in the settings have also changed and support distinct colors now.
The time bar which used to appear over the date has now been shifted to the left side probably in the anticipation of iPhone X-like notch that many Android phones are rushing to offer to the users especially the Android clones of the Apple’s premium smartphone.
New Style for Message Notifications
The new Android P will come with a new message notifications style where the user can see the full conversation including the stickers received during their chatting sessions along with the smart reply feature.
Now, this feature may get a bit controversial owing to the fact that some people may not feel comfortable with looking at their messages in the notifications bar in public space.
The user will also be able to choose whether they want to “Stop Notifications” or “Keep Showing” them by a long-press on any notification without wasting their time in the Settings app.
Google has brought new animations for transitioning between different activities and opening an activity from the notifications. You can see them in the videos below courtesy of XDA Developers:
Media and USB Dialogue Boxes
Google has also redesigned the volume panel which now appears on the side of the screen rather than being on top. The Bluetooth media output list will also show as a popup and the USB settings page has also gotten a quick makeover in the Android P.
Battery Information WIth Always on Display
With Android P, the Always on Display will show the battery percentage at the bottom of the screen which will make it easier for the user to check out how much power is left in their beloved smartphones.
Now the users will not have to use two hands to take a screenshot as by just holding the power/lock key, the shortcut option will appear below the power and restart option which will act as a virtual shortcut.
This feature may come as handy in devices using stock Android but other devices already have some easy shortcuts for taking screenshots for instance Huawei’s knuckle technology.
Notch Support in Android
Many Android devices are expected to follow Apple to offer the hideous notch that first made its way last year with the launch of iPhone X and for that purpose, Android P will offer the new settings that can manage the status bar height t separate the content on the screen from the cutout.
Most smartphones today have more than one cameras and now the new Android P will support access to simultaneous streams from two or more cameras. The new Multi-Camera API will create a fused stream that will automatically be able to switch between two or more lenses.
The new OS also has an API for display-based flash and access to OIS timestamps for app-level image stabilization and special effects.
Neural Networks API 1.1
The new devices will be all about AI and the Android 8.1 users already have Neural Networks API which accelerates on-device machine learning. With Neural Networks API 1.1, the P users will receive a Qualcomm Hexagon HVX driver with acceleration for quantized models.
Google will offer an improved Autofill Framework that will come in handy for the password manager apps and will feature dataset filtering, input sanitization, and a compatibility mode.
Finally, now when you’ll take a screenshot in Android P you’ll be immediately able to edit them by accessing the screenshot from the notifications bar and tapping the Edit button.
It is to be noted that many devices which offer their own UI have already provided the screenshot editing feature for quite some time now.
Text Zoom Tool
If you are one of those people who need to zoom in on a portion of a text when you’re typing something or using the text selector, well Android P is your solution to this issue as you can see in the video below:
Turning off Hotspot Automatically
For all those users who forget to turn off their hotspots will now have no worries as in Android P the device will automatically turn it off when no devices are connected which will help them to save their phone’s battery life.
Simplified Do Not Disturb Feature
Instead of choosing from different modes like Total Silence, Alarms only, etc. the user will get to decide what they want out of the Do Not Disturb feature by customizing the Behavior from the menu by accessing this feature from the sound settings.
With Android P, the user will be able to set preferences like whether they receive Alarms or Calls, allow Repeat callers and system feedback, etc.
Google has also made a video to help the developers in figuring out what’s new in the Android P. You can check it out below: