5 things you need to know about Android O

Thursday, 23 Mar, 2017

Last year's Android 7.0 Nougat release is only running on less than 3% of internet-connected Android devices, but Google is already charging forward with the next release, currently called Android O. The developer preview of the new version is available now. Since then it has only reached around three per cent of all Android phones.

On the lock screen in Android Nougat there is a microphone icon for quick access to Google Assistant and a camera icon for quick access to take a picture. Known as Android O - an official name will be assigned closer to its public launch - the OS has a focus on improving the battery life of your device. Unfortunately, there is only one new stock wallpaper in this version of Android O, but it's still a cool one.

Google has given its mobile search capabilities an overhaul, introducing new tappable shortcuts to surface information on selected topics much more quickly. Android O resumes the principle with its background limits system for apps. Applications can change this behavior by bringing the application to the foreground, using a foreground service, using the Geofencing API, or using a passive location listener. Efforts have been put in to improve battery life of a device, and Dave Burke said that "additional automatic limits have been put on what apps can do in the background". Since Google may not be ready to reveal everything on Android O, the company did share a few details like a number of new features that will debut on this new OS' and is sure to get Android fans anxiously waiting for the update. What's more, notifications can also be snoozed for 15 minutes, 30 minutes or for an hour. It's possible to drown in alerts that may not be wanted at that time or are irrelevant.

Thoughts about Android O's new features?

On the other hand, Google's operating systems have always been codenamed after candies such as KitKat, Marshmallow and Nougat.

The chances of you encountering malware on your Android phone is incredibly small, according to Google. It will also be possible for a phone to use the same interface to manage notification settings.

By the end of previous year, less than 0.71 percent of Android devices had installed a "potentially harmful application", such as spyware, a Trojan, or other malicious software.

Other features includes Picture in Picture (PIP) display for handsets and new windowing features, Font resources in XML, Adaptive icons, Connectivity, Keyboard navigation, Web view enhancements and many more. You can double tap them to see more.

Support for high-quality audio codec is the need of hour for Android, and seems like Google has finally heard our prayers. "In North America, just over 78 percent of flagship devices were current with the security update at the end of 2016", he explained. On a PHA level, Google is still doing a bang-up job on not letting through many bad apps that could do you harm, but the security patch situation still isn't great even after a solid year of improvements. This, in turn, will enable, apps to display more colors for more expressive designs.

Acknowledging the fact that nearly every major Android OEM has their own design language, Google is introducing something called "Adaptive Icons" in Android O. This feature will allow icons to easily adapt to whatever environment (read skin) they are in, be it Samsung's TouchWiz or OnePlus's Oxygen OS.