Google has just announced the latest flavour of their globally popular Android OS. The latest version is 9.0 and Google have lovingly dubbed it as only… P. While Google is keeping us in suspense some have guessed that the P stands for “popsicle” or “peppermint”. Although, the official dessert name, is yet to be announced.
While a lot of the new features that Google displayed to the public in their Developer Conference 2018 were simply the features from the latest public beta, most users did not like Google’s specific support for the new notch design in phones nowadays according to various polls, yet we hoped that Google maintains this support, since there are plenty of phones available in the market with the notch design. Luckily, most of the nice features that were displayed in the beta have been carried into the retail update as well as some new stuff.
What the users need to know
What is Android P? It is the next version of Android OS.
When can get you Android P? Public beta is out and the final version likely available till August 2018.
How much will Android P cost? It will be a free update.
Phones Supported by the new OS
- Google Pixel phones
- Nokia phones
- Vivo phones
- OnePlus phones
- Xiaomi phones
- Sony phones
- Oppo phones
- The Essential Phone
New Home Button Shape
On the home screen users are greeted by a pill-shaped button which acts almost exactly the same as the old home button: Tap it once and you’ll go home; press and hold it and you’ll open “Google Assistant”. Once you jump into an app, you’ll see the back button appear on the left of the home button. It works exactly the same as before, but it looks a little more angular.
Although this feature has been on Android overlays for ages, yet Google implementing it on a system level means it intends to bring battery life improvements. The OS will prevent apps from going rogue on power draw, and Google cited a 30% reduction in CPU wake lock, a feature which takes up the most battery life.
Navigate with swipes… and a home indicator
Google will be introducing a new home bar indicator at the bottom similar to iPhone X, but a bit shorter in size. The Recent Apps button functionality is taken over by a swipe-up gesture. Swiping on the elliptical indicator serves as an App scroller. The Back Key still exists on the new Navigation bar.
If you’re annoyed by auto-rotates then you could be in luck. Users will now be able to rotate the screen manually, with an indicator in the navigation bar.
App Actions is an AI based feature. The OS predicts what you’ll do next, or do most often, and loads it for instant access in the background beforehand. For example, when you connect your headphones to your device, the OS will prompt you to resume your music playlist. But for now, this feature doesn’t work in third-party apps.
Would you like to be able to pop a part of an app right when you need it most? The new Slices feature of Android P lets you do just that, giving you an even deeper look into your favourite apps. The example given was with ride-sharing. Search for “Lyft” and a Slice will surface that gives you the price and time for a trip to work, and you can even tap on it to finish the booking.
On the whole, it looks like an improvement but having to swipe up twice to get to the app drawer isn’t a backwards step? First you had the app drawer icon – that’s one press to get to your destination. Then it switched to a swipe up which is okay, still one gesture. This new one is two swipes to get to the app drawer which is weird. Glad Google is giving you the option to stick with the current format.
If I want to buy Apple I would prefer to buy iPhone. Why don’t they prefer something instead of making it an apple look like OS!!?
If Samsung phones will get Android P next year, don’t tell me they’re gonna follow this interface! It’s an iPhone X rip off!!!
I think virtual buttons were really better than those of gestures. Even if I go for an iPhone, I would like to buy iPhone 8 series instead of the X!