After being leaked a couple of days back, Google has now officially released the first developer builds for the next major update to Android. Like last year, though, the new features are mostly behind-the-scenes and less for the users. Android O primarily will be focusing on better battery life and notifications. Although this time, the build isn’t available via any OTAs, if you’d like to try out, you can flash the images from Google’s Developer page.
Now coming to the features, the first big upgrade is for your phone’s declining battery life. Android O will drastically turn down the activities being functioned in the background such as location tracking and reduce the impact apps have on the battery performance. Notifications on this version provide fine-grain control on what you receive from the source under app-defined categories, allow developers to customize the background color and better snoozing options. Additionally, Picture in Picture mode is now available for smartphones allowing overlays of various streaming apps on other screens.
Just like its iOS counterpart, Android now too has adaptive icons bringing dynamic shapes with animations and quick information. Google has also made some minor tweaks to the keyboard and has included more reliable, predictable models for what “arrow” and “tab” navigation will do. Starting from Android O, users will also have the option to configure a default password manager with new autofill APIs (Nice!). Another neat addition is support for A new native API designed specifically for apps that require high-performance, low-latency audio.
Download Android O Developer Preview
Those were some of the substantial updates Google is ushering with Android O, they will obviously keep on adding more as we approach the official launch dates i.e. scheduled for May 17 to May 19. If you own a Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel C, Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, Nexus Player and would like to download the dev preview of Android O, head over to the Android Developers page.