Google has finally unveiled a developer preview to the next iteration of Android operating system. While the developer preview is available to most phones on the pixel lineup released at least from 2018, it should be received with caution and not be used for day-to-day operations as its prone to have bugs that need fixing. Something that’s quite overlooked is just how important it is to own a Google Pixel, while other manufacturers are expected to bring their beta versions before the OS is finally deployed in masses, Pixel devices usually get these updates on day one.
And as seen from leaked images, the OS will have a major visual overhaul at the end of the year when it’ll be officially released alongside some handful privacy options. The developer preview was announced today, and as such, public beta should be expected anytime in a month’s duration. Android 12 will make it the sixth year when the tech giant gives the public a glimpse on the next iteration of android before its finally unveiled.
Looking at pandemic stricken 2020, the developer preview was announced in February, followed by a public release later on. The pandemic impacted on the dates, where Google changed from traditional March date to February, a move that was meant to give developers an ample time to make adjustments on their apps to work correctly with the OS.
Android 12 brings new tools for developers to build apps that offer great experiences to users. The overhaul starts from the notifications, which now has a new layout that provides more information when checked. Additionally, the OS has smoother transitions as well as animations and things like alerts should launch faster in Android 12.
In comparison with earlier versions of the OS, it’ll be now easier to copy and paste images, videos as well as other rich content, thanks to a new unified API that allows applications accept content from any source. We now have support for AV1 image file format (AVIF) which allows for better media quality without necessarily occupying more space. Additionally, immersive mode received a nice touch to play nice with Games, Videos and other apps using gesture navigation as well as single swipes.
Audio also received some touch-up under the hood to have haptics correctly correspond to audio playback. This will allow for per-contact vibrations or simply simulating rough terrain in racing games. Better part of the OS will now be updated via the Google Play Store.
Since I have an old Pixel 3, I can’t wait to get the preview so I can explore more features hidden underneath. It should also be noted some of these features may not end up in the final release, and some features may be added along the way. If you have any of these devices, Pixel 3 and 3XL, Pixel 3a and 3Axl, Pixel 4 and 4XL, Pixel 4a and 4a 5G or Pixel 5, then you’re in luck, they are all supported.