As the latest version of Android is being released, exciting details are emerging about potential new features. For years, Android users have been wanting a way to further customize their interface & it appears that this long-awaited wish may finally come true with the integration of an application. Get ready for more updates & prepare for a more personalized Android experience.
We are currently testing Android Q in its sixth beta, the last one before receiving the final version. The first official version is estimated to arrive during the third quarter of the year, so in theory, it should be ready before the end of September. It seemed that with the last beta everything would be decided.
We will start by explaining what exactly Android Q is and what it means to be a beta version. Then we will tell you the Google forecasts for their release dates, and we will continue listing all the news that it contains, and we will end by telling how you can download it. Some of them may not reach their final versions, but they help us to get an idea of what approach you want to take.
What is Android Q
Android Q is the next version of Google’s operating system after the launch of Android 9.0 Pie last year, so we could also refer to it as Android 10.0. Like each new version, we will find several improvements for the operating system, some new and others with which it internalizes improvements that other manufacturers have been implementing through their respective layers of customization.
What you have for the moment is a beta or trial version, and we don’t expect the final version to reach the second half of the year. Android versions always have candy names in English, but in the betas phases they are usually limited to putting a letter of the alphabet, and each new version is the next letter of the previous one. Then from that letter, the final name comes out, such as an Android P that in its final version was called Android Pie, or an Android O that ended up being Android Oreo.
Google launches several betas to receive the opinions of developers and users who want to test it, and thus solve bugs, debug performance, and give developers the possibility of adapting their applications for when the final version arrives.
When does Android Q arrive?
According to Google, this year they have very defined plans regarding development, beta testing and the official launch of Android Q. The objective is to launch six beta versions before releasing the final version of the operation during the third quarter of the year, at which time its final name is also disclosed.
Betas 2, 3 and 4 were scheduled for the beginning of each month (April, May, and June). In July, there came the 5th version and now in August, we have already downloaded the sixth and almost the final beta. Now sit tight and wait for the final version that will be the official Android Q perhaps at the end of September or early October.
Does this mean that your Android will have the new version in autumn?
As Android users eagerly anticipate the latest version of the mobile operating system slated for arrival this Autumn, they may be disappointed to learn that not all devices will be receiving the update right away. Those with Pixel phones or Android One devices may be lucky enough to access the update sooner, but for the majority, the wait may stretch well into next year. Manufacturers must first adapt the new version to their devices & personalization layers, before initiating the rollout. This process can take months, resulting in staggered software updates for Android users worldwide.
What’s new in Android Q
One of the main novelties of the first vein of the next version of Google’s operating system has to do with privacy. It is a new setting with which we can have greater control over the applications that make use of our location in real-time, even if they are in the background.
With this setting, you can decide which applications you want that cannot access your location. In addition to denying access to the location, you can also choose between authorizing applications to use the device’s location only when they are being used or at all times, a distinction that lets you know who accesses your location and when.
It will now be possible, for example, for a home delivery app to know only the user’s position during the order and delivery phase. When you change your app, you will stop sharing this information.
Android Q will also have new permission systems for apps to access user photos and videos and Google will eliminate access to many of the unique identifiers of each smartphone, such as the IMEI number, to prevent apps from developing detailed profiles of the user.
Limiting access to storage
And speaking of permissions, new ones will also be added with which you will be able to control the access of the applications to the photos, videos, and music of the internal storage of your device. These three elements and the downloads will have new execution permissions, so you can decide which applications your files can use and at what time.
This change also means that developers will have to change the way their applications use shared storage areas. In any case, facing the user means that apps will not be able to use these type of files that are usually more sensitive without your explicit permission.
More control of background applications
Android Q brings greater control over background applications & offers new features to curb automatic foreground jumps that may hijack users’ attention. These jumps may involve unsolicited ads or notifications from apps that users may find annoying or disruptive. Android Q’s updates aim to prevent these background apps from opening & grabbing users’ focus without their consent, a crucial step in enhancing users’ satisfaction & engagement with their mobile devices. With these enhancements, Android Q seeks to improve the overall user experience & satisfaction with the platform.
From now on, applications will no longer be able to launch such ads while they are in the background. They can only call the user’s attention in case of incoming calls, alarms or notifications classified by the user as “high priority”, which will be the only ones that will appear in full screen.
Restricting access to your mobile IDs
Android’s special approach to privacy in its next version does not end here. A new function is also included with which to restrict the access of applications to the identifiers of your device that cannot be modified, such as the IMEI or the serial number, as well as other private data.
Besides, as an extra security measure, the MAC address of the device can also be changed randomly when connected to different WiFi networks, although this is completely optional and you can deactivate it. As we have explained, the Mac address is a unique identifier that each manufacturer assigns to the network card of its connected devices.
A new image format with depth
The portrait mode is one of the biggest photographic trends in the last generations of mobile phones, and Android wants to make it easier to do it. To do this, in Android Q they implement a new image format, which will save the XMP metadata with the depth of the photos you take next to the JPG.
With these metadata that include information about the depth in the photo, the idea is that these can then be used to edit the photos with any other gallery or editor and we can add depth to them … making effects like the famous background blur that has a portrait mode.
One of the most anticipated functions by users is the ability of recording the screen without having to resort to external applications. Android Q, finally includes it natively, allowing the user to start recording what happens on their phone by simply pressing on the screen and choosing the recording option.
Neural Networks API 1.2
Android Q adds support to Google’s new neural network API, which will allow manufacturers to improve the artificial intelligence of their devices. In the API they have added 60 new operations, which allow, among other things, to accelerate and improve the detection of objects and images.
A Pixel user receives a suggestion in settings
Google Pixel are usually the mobiles that receive relevant news before anyone else, not in vain is where Google first tests the operating system. Sometimes, some characteristics catch us by surprise, although many of them are half done in the betas.
As we read in Android Police, a user has appeared with a suggestion in the settings, inviting him to personalize the experience of his mobile, as we can see in this capture.
The potential for extensive customization options is hinted at in a notice encouraging users to experiment with various styles, wallpapers & watches. Upon clicking on the notice, users are redirected to the wallpaper application, leading us to believe that any customization updates will likely be incorporated into this app. However, there is also speculation that the wallpaper app could eventually be replaced entirely by a new, more comprehensive customization platform.
In the development settings, users can already modify accent colors, icons & typography. It seems logical that these options will become standard features accessible to all users in the final version. The possibilities for personalizing the user experience are vast & promise to add a whole new dynamic to the application.
Goodbye Smart Lock, Hello Pixel Presence
Although Smart Lock, the system that, among other things, allows us to keep our device unlocked when it detects our face, when we carry it on or when we are in a place of trust, is still present in the system settings. Some lines of the text suggest that this feature could be named Pixel Presence. We do not know if this means that, in the future, this could cease to be a native function of Android or will just become exclusive to Pixel devices.
One of the most important news introduced with the first betas of Android 10 Q were the notification bubbles, now compatible with all applications. To make your intentions on this functionality even clearer, the option to activate notification bubbles is already in the system settings. However, it is the developers who must make their apps compatible with this feature.
This same function has allowed us to see the total redesign of the notification settings panel, which now shows animations that indicate the operation of some of the features and settings available in this menu.
Improvements in the dark theme of the Pixel Launcher
The Pixel Launcher has received improvements when the dark theme is enabled. The Google search bar becomes dark, and the system shutdown menu also receives a redesign for a darker gray background.
Live wallpaper preview
When setting up an animated wallpaper, a checkbox located at the top of the screen will allow you to see a preview of the moving image before applying it as wallpaper.
New Wi-Fi icon
To adapt to the new appearance of the icons, the Wi-Fi indicator on the quick settings panel and the status bar has been renewed.
The option to postpone notifications is back
After disappearing in the third beta, a function that had almost become a classic such as the possibility of postponing notifications has returned with this fourth edition. Also, it is again possible to discard notifications by sliding to both sides.
New accent colors for the interface
In its idea of improving the customization capabilities of the system in this new version, Google introduced the possibility of changing the accent color of the interface, being able to choose between several predefined tones through the developer settings. This new beta introduces even more colors to choose from.
The option to rotate the screen content manually returns
One of the best news introduced with Android Pie was the possibility of rotating the screen content manually, through a small icon that would appear on the screen when we changed the position of the device.
With the arrival of the new gestures of Android Q in the third beta, this option disappeared. Fortunately, it is back again in this latest beta edition.
The lock icon on the lock screen
Probably the first change that Pixel device users will see as soon as they turn on their mobile for the first time, is the new iPhone-style lock icon that will appear at the top of the lock screen. The icon represents that the phone is locked, and when authenticating with our fingerprint or with the unlock method configured, a lock opening animation will appear.
The first beta released for Pixel phones confirms that Android Q will have a desktop mode. With it, you can connect the phone to a screen and make use more similar to that made with a computer. The option, currently available to developers, reveals the appearance of the desktop after connecting the phone to a screen. A configuration menu would appear in the lower-left which could offer the options to change the desktop background and add app shortcuts. It will also allow third-party launchers to improve its design. Ah … And double screen!
Energy-saving mode based on phone usage habits
In the beta version of Android Q, a new option for energy-saving mode is added. In addition to being able to choose, in which the percentage of the battery is activated automatically, an option is included that activates it according to the habits of use of the phone. In this way, the phone would take into account the battery consumption habits according to the use we give daily to activate the saving mode automatically at the appropriate time.
Improvements in haptic responses
Vibrating responses are a feature that improves the experience of using the phone. Well, now we will have this type of response when selecting the texts, plugging it into the charger or putting it in silence.
File Explorer more simple and intuitive
A remarkable redesign is introduced in this application, in which we can appreciate a cleaner, tidy and intuitive user interface.
The Focus Mode is a mode designed to concentrate on your work when you are using the mobile, so it limits applications such as Instagram or other social networks and gives you access to apps that you may need to work, such as Gmail or Slack.
Better parental control
Do you have children and leave them the phone to play? Or are they starting to have their first phone? Well, parental control will be improved, allowing you to set a maximum of hours in an application, establish a bedtime, or as usual, block certain applications.
Improved Smart Reply
Smart Reply is the option that lets us send messages from the notification itself, and will be improved to send emoji, open Maps when they send us an address, Gmail when they send us an email address, etc. All without leaving notifications.
Google knows that the future is in telecommunications, so like other manufacturers, it is already betting on 5G, which will be the new standard in a few years, and is already preparing Android for the speeds and needs of this new network.
Welcome folding devices
In the past Mobile World Congress 2019, we have seen the arrival of the first mobile folding new generation, such as Samsung Galaxy Fold or Huawei Mate X. And there are other companies that are also preparing possible devices of this format, and Android does not want to be left behind when it comes to offering them facilities.
Therefore, if last November Google released support for folding screens, Android Q will improve it when used with applications and functions such as onResume and onPause. Also, if you use the big screen with two or more applications, support for simultaneous notifications is now added. Finally, developers will also have a new tool to test how their application looks on these devices.
ZAZZ is always committed to staying abreast with the latest developments in the world of technology. Our Android App Development Company is constantly testing & reviewing the updates we receive from Google regarding Android Q. With this new version, Google has continued its legacy of providing competing features in the market. What’s more impressive is that Google has addressed users’ privacy, wellbeing & presented an uncomplicated operating system. We can assure you that the latest Android Q is worth trying out. If you have any question regarding this upcoming Android Q, feel free to ask us at Zazz and rest assured that we will update you with all the happenings and news.