by Sri Soundhar | 14 June, 2018 | 0 Comments

ANDROID P: Packed with smart and simpler

Android "P" is the upcoming ninth major version of the Android operating system. It was first announced by Google on March 7, 2018, and the first developer preview was released on the same day. The second preview, considered beta quality, was released on May 8, 2018. The third preview, called Beta 2, was released on June 6, 2018.

Android p is officially Android 9

As spotted in the third developer preview, Android P is Android 9. This signifies that Android P is a big upgrade from 8.0 Oreo, and based on what we're about to dive into, we've got no problem agreeing with that.

Gesture-based navigation system

One of the biggest changes to Android P is the removal of the traditional navigation buttons. There’s now one elongated button right in the center, which acts as your home button. You can tap it to go home or long-press it to bring up Google Assistant.

Swiping up from the new home button and will bring up a screen called Overview. It features your most recently used apps, a search bar, and five app suggestions at the bottom. From there, you can swipe left to see all your recently opened apps. You can also drag the home button to the right to quickly scroll through your apps as well — Google calls this gesture Quick Scrub. To open the app drawer, do a long swipe up from the home screen.

Android Dashboard and App Timers

Android Dashboard helps you get a hold on your “digital wellbeing,” otherwise known as how much time you’re spending on your phone. The feature shows exactly how you’re spending your time on your phone, including what apps you use the most. It also tells you how many times you’ve unlocked your handset and how many notifications you’ve received.

Google's trying to squeeze as much juice as possible out of your battery

It seems like Google's always trying to find ways to maximize your phone's battery life as much as possible, and with AndroidP, those efforts are present in a new Adaptive Battery mode.

Similar to how Adaptive Brightness automatically adjusts your display's brightness level based on your environment and usage, Adaptive Battery will examine how you use your phone and limit CPU usage to apps you infrequently use.

Google notes that Adaptive Battery can lower CPU usage by as much as 30%, and thanks to the use of Machine Learning, it'll only get better the more you use your phone.

App shortcuts are everywhere

With Android Nougat, Google introduced us to App Shortcuts 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.

Security updates

In the case of each update, the most important issues are Security updates. Android P introduces few features that allow developers to increase security. The first of the described ones is unified fingerprint authentication dialog represented by the class called FingerprintDialog. You can now use dialog with unified look that improves user’s experience and gains user’s trust. Such a purpose takes ConfirmationDialog which was designed to confirm the short statement by the user. You can display this dialog for user to allow him to confirm sensitive action (e.g. payment transaction) and get hash-based cryptographic signature of the statement. The signature is, for sure, produced using KeyStore API and Trusted Execution Environment.

A new standard for biometric authentication

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."

Thanks to the 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, but it's an important background change we're more than happy to see.

All the little things

In addition to the big changes found in Android P, there are a ton of smaller elements also scattered throughout the update. Some of my favorites include:

  • Built-in screenshot editor
  • Zoom pop-up when highlighting text
  • Changing the volume now defaults to your media volume
  • Volume controls appear on the right of your screen instead of the top
  • Do Not Disturb is more customizable and easier to understand
  • 157 new emoji
  • Improved messaging notifications
  • And more…
The official build should be released in August

Google notes that the final release for Android P will be published in Q3, and based on the above timeline and Oreo's release schedule, we should see Android P get a proper launch at some point in August.

However, Google's Pixel phones aren't the only ones that get to have fun with this early access. Google's opening up its Android Beta Program to third-party OEMs for the first time ever thanks to Project Treble, including Nokia, OnePlus, Sony, Essential, Xiaomi, Vivo, and Oppo.

  • Wikipedia
  • Google developers blog
  • Android central
  • Android Authority

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