In a surprising turn of events, Google has publicly unveiled their newest version of Android, called Android N. This reveal was meant to take their competitors, Apple, by storm, as they haven’t had the chance to unveil their new software. Although Android N is only a code name, and the entire feature roster is yet to be revealed, here is what we currently know about the next generation mobile operating system.
Android N’s notification system will be reworked and improved, as users will now be able to respond to some notifications in the notification itself – no need to open your messaging app to reply to messages: now you can do it without abandoning the previous app. Sure, Android has had interactive notification cards for years, the most notable one being the Music one, which allows you to pause, play or skip the current song. However, this was about the best you got so far, besides Google’s Hangouts app, which allows users to reply from the notification, but through a popup. Android N will expand the notification a bit to remove the need for a popup.
Android N will also include “bundled notifications,” which will keep all notifications for a single app in one line. Users will be able to expand those notifications using a two-finger gesture or by tapping a new expansion button.
Perhaps the biggest known feature of Android N is its split-screen ability. Finally getting into the ranks of PCs, Macs and iPads, common smart devices will finally be able to run multiple apps on-screen at once. Google has stated that this feature will allow users to continue watching a YouTube video while checking their emails, or browsing the Internet. This means that, without a doubt, the productivity of many people will increase, and with it, Android’s popularity.
Samsung has already given its customers the ability to run multiple apps on the same screen, but only as an add-on for official Samsung devices. Thus, Android N will mark the first time split-screen apps become available for the majority of the Android market.
Better battery management
With Android N, smart devices will get a better battery life, as Google has stated that they have improved Doze. What is Doze? It is a feature introduced in the current version of Android, which puts phones into a deep sleep mode when they are left untouched for a long time. This means that phones get a lot more battery life when idle, and they’re about to get a lot more with the new version of Android.
More to come
You might think “That’s it? What a lackluster reveal!”. However, this was only a taste of things to come. Keep in mind that usually, we don’t hear news about the new Android version before Google’s I/O presentation, which will take place on May 18-20 this year.
In a blog post, Google stated “We’re doing something a little different this year by releasing the preview early… really early.”
Google noted that a super-early preview allows developers to weigh in much sooner, giving Google more time to incorporate app-makers’ feedback. It follows Microsoft’s nearly yearlong preview of Windows 10, allowing anyone to download it and submit suggestions along the way. It basically builds on the open beta system that many software companies adopt for their newest products, which often lead to some of the best and bug-free releases on the market.
While we can’t wait to see what new things Google has for us in this exciting new version, we most likely won’t even have to. You have our guarantee that as soon as there’s a leak on the Internet regarding Android N, we’ll post about it. That being said, stay tuned for more news about Google’s new version of Android!