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Google Releases “Android O” Developer Preview

Google doesn’t look like it wants to take any chances with Android. This was evident when they pre-released a developer preview for the current Android Nougat OS for smartphones last year. The preview version was dubbed Android N, which evolved into Nougat for its official public launch. This was done so that developers get enough time to test the operating system for its flaws and new additions before a full-fledged public release. Similarly, this year they’ve presented yet another preview version for developers named ‘Android O’.

This release was met with immense fan response as most have dubbed the upcoming Android OS version as Android Oreo. Not just this, but there are a lot of new changes and features, most of which are related to battery conservation.  Although there aren’t a lot of details that Google have floated regarding the new OS, there are few that we could test out. So, if you’re excited to learn more about the next Android version, here are some details that we know so far.

New Limit on Background Activity

Like we’ve mentioned already, the new OS lays special emphasis on battery conservation in devices and hence they’ve decided to put some extra restriction on background activity in apps. This allows users to limit various background activities such as implicit broadcasts and location update etc. Most of these services are automatized so they do not impact the device’s battery life.

Autofill Support for Better Security

While smartphones and mobile devices have become the primary way how people access the internet. But features such as autofill still makes mobile devices lightly inferior to full blown computers. Thankfully, with the new version Android will feature a new Autofill API that will add more security. Users will be able to choose whether they need Autofill for a specific app or not. Moreover, all user passwords along with repetitive and login information can also be managed with Passwords Managers that will work cohesively with the new Autofill API.

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PiP Display

Picture in Picture display is already in motion with Android TV so why not use this for Handsets. PiP display support will not only make the interface appear unique as compared to Apple, but could also strengthen Android’s claim as a standardized mobile device OS. Android O is also rumored to feature a wide Color Gamut for apps that will enhance the various photo editing and image viewer apps.

More Control on Notifications

Android O will group different notifications together based on their category. This allows users to individually control the way notifications are displayed for various apps. Although notifications are managed by the apps, users can now choose whether they want persistent notifications from an app or not. This again will help conserve phone data and battery.

XML Font Resources

While this means nothing for users, XML font resources is certainly a great treat for developers who have a better control over various fonts in apps giving them the opportunity to use custom fonts. It also de-complicates font incorporation for developers just like how they control the color schemes.

HD Audio with Bluetooth

Finally, good news for users as they will be able to now enjoy HD audio on their Androids, even when using Bluetooth earphones. This might be indicative of the fact that devices will continue to shed off the 3.5 mm jack in favor of Bluetooth audio. Thanks to the inclusion of Sony LDAC codec, you can enjoy high quality audio with Bluetooth audio hardware. The new AAudio API also reduces overall latency, that will be beneficial for apps such as Garage Band and others to smoothly operate on Android devices.

See Also: 10 Android Hacks You Probably Don’t Know

3rd Party Calling Apps

Another departure from the conventional calling app on your device, Android O will now provide an even better support for 3rd party apps that will easily work with your service provider. The calling data can now be controlled and displayed over Bluetooth and can work with your phone data.

Neighborhood Networking

Neighborhood Aware Networking or NAN is another special feature that will surface with new devices powered by Android O. This allows these supported devices to communicate with each other over wi-fi, without using any central access point.

Better Keyboard Navigation

Navigation is one of the major challenges when it comes to mobile devices. To improve this, the new OS provides support for arrow and tab key that will enhance app navigation with the keyboard. This is beneficial for both users and developers, who can design new apps with better keyboard navigation options.

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There are several other features such as Adaptive icons like Google Pixel Launcher and the inclusion of JAVA 8 API that are also rumored to be a part of this new operating system. Nevertheless, these above details might keep your gizmo loving brain satiated, till the time Android Oreo makes its official presence.

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Akshay Peter

Akshay Luke Peters is a writer and blogger for Systweak Software. He likes to write about off-beat topics and technological awareness. He is also part musician who likes to explore the future of technology in entertainment and popular media.

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