Google, the dominant search engine giant, has surprised the world of mobile technology by introducing the very first developer preview after its Nougat, Pie and Oreo versions.
With the grand arrival of Android Q Beta 1, Google seemed to break its archaic tradition and launched its very first preview which is available for Pixels.
Making people anxious and excited, the Beta version for developers gives an early glimpse into novel features and tweaks to be released later this year.
The reason why people are thrilled to try new features of Android Q version is that it contains a slew of unique features, granular changes and improvements.
With newer capabilities and experiences, Google’s new Android Beta Program can add a lot of frisson and joy for users in terms of hardware and software.
Check out these top features about the latest Android Q.
Big Remarkable Features of Android Q
1) Better controls over privacy
With a lot of privacy issues questioning the operational integrity of leading tech giants, it comes as a great relief that Android Q focuses on privacy assurance as a pivotal element.
As Google offers different app permissions, users get better control over what they share with downloaded apps.
With a feature of runtime permissions in place, apps need clear permission from you if they want to track your location in the background.
You can allow location access when an app is running so you can limit the data an app collects.
2) Colors and themes
Even without a dark mode, users will be able to change the accent colors in Android Q by enabling developer settings. It might not appear like a detailed and elaborate theming engine, but it looks decent nonetheless.
The accent color settings offer three options: black, purple and green with default blue. Users can also change the icons from the system to options like teardrop, squircle or rounded rectangle, or switch the font to Noto Serif.
To enable the option for accent colors, go to Settings -> About phone, and hit the Build number seven times followed by PIN or password.
Then go to Settings -> System -> Developer options and scroll down to see the theming options, where you can change accent colors, body font, and icons.
3) Native Screen recording
This is the feature long awaited by Android users and Android Q finally brought it in. To test the feature, navigate to developer options and it works just as expected. You can easily record the screen with a voiceover.
Go to Settings -> System -> Developer options and scroll down to the Debugging setting to see Feature flags.
Turn on settings_screenrecord_long_press to start recording the screen.
If you need to launch the feature, hold the power button to pull up the menu, and long press the screenshot button. You will see a dialog box with options for recording audio such as a button Start Recording with on-screen taps.
Select it and you are all set. Like other settings, the Google may introduce an easier, faster way to enable the feature in future builds.
4) Native desktop mode
Surprisingly enough, Android Q is able to automatically switch to desktop mode as your phone is connected to an external monitor. You will get to see the interface that mirrors a scaled version of what you experience with Pixel.
Here you are free to explore multi-windows and open or move apps around on the screen. Though, as Android makers would say, desktop mode of Android Q may not be as good as Samsung Dex offerings, as a first Beta version it still looks pleasant. Hopefully, this one will also get better in upcoming versions.
5) Foldable Screen Support
To enable better innovative experience with Android Q, Android app developers could manage the way apps appear on the large foldable screens.
Users can get the best out of available large-screen devices as upgraded Android Q now facilitates improvements like onPlus and onResume for multi-resume support.
Further, to manage the app appearance and display on a large and foldable screen, Android Q has also worked on the way the resizableActivity manifests different attribute works.
For supporting the multiple-display type switching, Android Emulator has also been updated.
Read Also: 24 Best Android Apps 2021
6) Shortcuts sharing
This is another noticeable feature of Android Q. The option now makes shortcuts sharing easier than experienced before. With Shortcuts sharing, Android users can switch directly to another app for sharing content.
Developers can publish shared targets, which triggers an activity displayed the in the share UI.
Sharing Shortcut functionality is similar to the way the App Shortcuts works. Google is on its way to expand the Shortcutinfo API for streamlining integration process.
The API will also support the Direct Share functionality on pre-Android Q devices.
7) Enhanced photo bokeh effect with third-party apps
Android Q now supports a new file format for third-party apps to offer better dynamic depth effects in photos. This Dynamic Depth format in its single file contains a JPEG file, XMP metadata (for depth-related elements) and a depth and confidence map.
The additional details let the apps provide specialized blur and broken effects with possibilities of 3D images and AR use cases in future.
Google is trying to make Dynamic Depth an open format and working to make the feature more accessible across diverse Android devices.
8) Smart priority-based notification provision
Google realized how overwhelming it gets to handle notifications and latest alerts. To relax you, Android Q now adds a small bell icon (think of YouTube) next to the recent notification to visually indicate what needs your urgent attention.
What is interesting, the bell icon is there for only 30 seconds, but still it looks like handy solution if you are inundated by bursts of notifications.
Similarly, Android Q is also changing how you usually dismiss notifications and allows you to dismiss them with a swipe to the right.
Earlier, users could swipe notifications to either side of the screen to dismiss them. Now a swipe to the left initiates the notification actions.
Small but upgraded features
1) Detailed App page
So far, users were kept unaware of the how many notifications an app sends. Now the new Android Q has redesigned the app info page that lets you see the amount of notifications a particular app gets.
Moreover, the page also gives exact view of data consumed by an app on Wi-Fi and Cellular connection. Plus, users can open the app with new icon which is different from the icon for force-stop and uninstall.
2) Precise and proactive Wi-Fi settings
You might have been through instances where your Wi-Fi disastrously fades off while browsing. Android Q just got the solution for this; it enables you to see a floating UI settings pane that apps trigger in such instances.
So if you are using Chrome as a browser and it detects the loose Wi-Fi network connectivity, it will display settings window for you to view options for Wi-Fi, airplane mode and mobile data.
This feature gives you all the ease you need to change data settings without quitting the app.
3) Better AOD
Android’s On Display view has also received a tweak and changed for good features with Android Q. Now users can see what music it is playing and the battery indicator at the top right of the display instead of the bottom.
4) Revamped Screenshot shapes
This might be small, but Google has applied some twist to screenshot shapes, too. In this implementation, the screenshot will also show rounded curves and notches instead of sharp edges.
The multitasking window also shows app tiles with rounded corners. We can’t even imagine what is next and will be sick if Google would stop at this.
Bottom line: Expect more surprises from Google
What we saw is just a brief highlight of the new features from Android Q. This is still a fairly stable Beta for a first development build release.
As Google suggests, there will be six Android Q betas down the line and the stable build is likely to appear somewhere in Q3. It seems Google is going to add more devices to Android Q accessibility list though there is no firm confirmation on exactly when.
So people who are eager to try and access its early build better hold on for the next beta roll out. Hopefully, I/O 2019 becomes the occasion for this glorious announcement.