Google has revealed the latest Android P mobile operating system to the world and with it comes lots of new information about what Android users can expect soon.
Details were announced at the Google I/O 2018 developer conference keynote on May 8.
You can already opt to be part of the tester program and install Android P Beta now. But first here’s everything you need to know about Android P.
First and foremost is the name, Android P is called Android Pistachio Ice Cream by Google – in house at least. That isn’t the final name though. So the guessing game is still on.
Android Pineapple Upsidedown Cake is still a favourite.
When it comes to feature upgrades, Android P is not lacking. Google has clearly listened to the needs of its users and has quickly begun implementing the necessary changes.
Indoor positioning could be an exciting feature. This will allow Google Maps to pinpoint your location when indoors, something GPS can’t currently offer.
This is thanks to new Wi-Fi RTT which allows for more accurate location information using Wi-Fi location data.
Digital Wellbeing is another nice addition which lets you set restrictions. For example you could set the phone to stop you watching Netflix after two hours.
You could even have it go into black and white mode to encourage you to stop using the app.
Following the iPhone X notch screen, Android phone manufacturers are copying and so Google is there to support.
This will allow for the phone to display content like battery, time and notifications around the notch area.
Crucially this is thought to be a first step towards support for foldable phones in the near future.
Android P will be more adaptive thanks to AI smarts that help optimise the phone. That means throttling apps that are not in use so as to save battery.
This also means better adaptive screen brightness and it can even bring application forward when it predicts you’ll need them.
Slice is up
A new UI change called Slices will allow apps to offer more information at the search level.
So if you look for a place, for example, you won’t only get Google autofill suggestions, you will also get app insights like Google Photos in the list displaying pics of that place that you’ve taken, for example.
Do Not Disturb
The Do Not Disturb (DND) feature on Android P takes personal space to a new level thanks to more drastic protections.
If you turn on DND in Android P all notifications will be hidden. Only alerts for starred contacts will be allowed to come through – and even that is restricted to phone calls only.
Smart home button navigation
Gone is the simple home button icon in favour of a new, smarter and more complex replacement.
The home button responds to different touches and swipes for quicker and easier access to varying areas of the OS.
Tap to skip to home screen, long press to launch Google Assistant, half swipe up to launch overview, full swipe up to go to app drawer, slide to the right to scroll through recent apps or tap the back button within apps to jump back.
While Google set the Android P developer preview live already, it’s only just officially launched the Android P Beta. So we could still be in for a wait but the rumour mill suggests we could see Android P as soon as August.
While the Android P Beta is available to download right now, it’ll only be available on certain Android phones. At the moment it’s out for the Essential Phone PH-1, Google Pixel, Google Pixel XL, Google Pixel 2, Google Pixel 2 XL, Nokia 7 Plus, OnePlus 6, Oppo R15 Pro, Sony Xperia XZ2, Vivo X2 and Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S.
The complete list of phones due to get Android P 9.0 update, announced so far, includes:
Pixel 2 XL
Huawei P20 Pro
Huawei Mate 10
Huawei Mate 9
LG V30S ThinQ
All Motorola phones released in 2017 and 2018 will get the Android P update.
Galaxy S9 Plus
Galaxy S8 Plus
Galaxy Note 8