Continuing the transparency of Android development, Google announced the first Developer Preview of Android O. This Developer Preview is meant to provide an early access to developers so that they can start making their apps compatible with the new APIs and design guidelines. This is in no way meant for consumers or as a daily driver being the very first preview and it unstable. However, if you’re an enthusiast and have an extra Pixel or Nexus lying around, I don’t see why you shouldn’t give it a try and get a taste of all the new features yourself.
As it stands now, Android O does not have a lot many eye popping features. Just like the previous developer preview releases for Android Marshmallow or Nougat, you can only get a taste of what’s to come. Google can and most probably will add more features as the development moves forward with new preview releases.
Here’s a quick overview of some of the noticeable new features in Android O compared to Nougat to help you decide whether you want to go through all the trouble of installing it. You can check out these features discussed in detail here.
Background app limits : For the first time, Google is cracking down on background apps limiting their background activities to specific time slots after which they need to shut down all background services unless the app is being used. This will supposedly reduce a significant amount of battery drain.
Notifications : Android O gives you even more control on individual app notifications than Android Nougat. App notifications are grouped into notification channels which can be individually turned off. For instance, you can turn off notifications for retweets on Twitter right from the notification shade on an OS level, instead of having to dig through the app settings inside the Twitter app.
Similarly, individual notifications can be snoozed for a specific amount of time instead of having to block all notifications from an app indefinitely or turning on Do not disturb mode which blocks notifications from every app unless whitelisted.
Bluetooth Audio : Google has partnered with Sony to drastically improve audio capabilities on Android, especially bluetooth audio. Android O supports high quality bluetooth audio codecs including Sony’s LDAC codec.
Adaptive Icons : You might have seen how different OEMs skin the stock Android icons to make them look specific to their brand. On devices from many Chinese OEMs, not only the stock app icons are modified but unsupported icons from third-party apps are encased in ugly looking colored boxes. Android O aims to fix that with icons that can adapt to the system. Thus, they can fit in on different phones with different interface looks.
Autofill APIs : Much like you can switch Keyboard apps, Android O will allow you to choose your “autofill” app which can then autofill passwords and usernames for you without you having to switch apps. In simpler words, LastPass and similar apps will work more seamlessly.
This is just scratching the surface of course but these are the more prominent changes that will probably get you excited for Android O. The first Developer Preview is available for the Pixel, Pixel XL, Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X, Pixel C and Nexus Player. Since Android O is not yet part of the Android beta program, if you’re a beta member, you might get notifications to go back to Android 7.1.2 Nougat.
Android O will see three more developer releases before the final release. Acording to the Android Developer website, the next preview will not be available until mid May.
Download Android O Developer Preview Factor Images
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Source : Android