Every new version of Android changes the way our smartphones work, and guess what; Android O is just around the corner.
Wait, let us clarify that. The developer preview for the next Android operating system is already available on most modern Pixel and Nexus devices!
Why are we excited? And why should YOU be excited? Well, run through the reasons one by one, shall we?
Image: Android Gadget Hacks
1. Battery life improvements
There’s nothing quite as annoying as having a really great phone that just doesn’t make it through the day. One of the key improvements this new version of Android is bringing is smarter background task management. Without getting too deep into the details here, Android O will limit what apps can do when you’re not using them. Less activity, better battery life; as simple as that. Hopefully, this doesn’t negatively impact usability.
Image: 91 Mobiles
2. Notifications that actually make sense
How many times have you pulled down your notification tray to preview a WhatsApp message only to have it disappear under a pile of other notifications? The answer is TOO MANY TIMES. With Android O, things will be very different. Now, you expect a lot more control over individual notifications. Plus, there’ll even be a snooze function that will cause them to appear at a later time. Developers can also specify background colours for app-specific notifications. Will we see blue-on-white Facebook updates in the future? Time will tell.
3. Better wireless audio playback
The future is wireless, right? Well, it’s not so simple for audiophiles. Currently, they have no choice but to sacrifice audio quality if they want to rely on their wireless headphones. Thankfully, this new version of Android will prioritise high-quality, low-latency wireless audio. Word is that support for the LDAC codec will find its way in. There’s also a new native API for apps in need of really good sound called AAudio which ought to help iron things out.
Image: Tech Crunch
4. 3rd party password managers
Passwords are just not safe. Study after study has shown that people who use regular old passwords will end up using the same password multiple times, thus costing them their security. Nowadays, Google and Apple give you the option of using a built-in password manager. But if you’ve got one you prefer (something like Avast Passwords, for instance), Android O will be open to integration.
Image: XDA Developers
5. Picture-in-picture apps
Remember when multitasking on your smartphone was a big deal? Well, this is the next step. With picture-in-picture apps, you can finally watch YouTube while browsing Facebook or answering emails! Samsung Galaxy users have had this feature since the S3 in the form of the ‘multi-window’ feature. But hey, now we can all share in the glory of Android.
While the rest of us wait in line for Android O’s official name and release, check the list below to see if your device supports the Developer Preview. Let us know what your experience of the new version is like!
List of supported devices:
- Nexus 5X
- Nexus 6P
- Nexus Player
- Pixel XL
- Pixel C