Google I/O 2018 is now over, and it has to be one of the best events of 2018 so far. Although there were no hardware releases, there were enough announcements to make the crowd excited. Undoubtedly, Android P was the most prominent announcement at the event. The latest version of Android gets a lot of new features and polishes to existing features. Let’s find out what’s new and what’s changed!
Android M was marshmallow, N was Nougat… So, what’s Android P? Well, there’s no official name yet. What we know is, it’s called Android 9.0.
Google took a lot of time to talk about the new features on its next operating system. Let’s go through the top 3 features:
Fist and foremost, we have new gestures! Android P brings in new ways to interact with your phone. The idea here is to leverage as much real estate to the user as possible.
With bezels shrinking in size, the solution to navigating any modern smartphone was to use on-screen buttons. But with the new update, that’s all about to change. Google is introducing iPhone X like navigating features which (almost) entirely ditches the on-screen navigation buttons.
Swiping up from the bottom of the screen will take you to the home screen. There’s a pill-shaped button on the bottom of the screen. You can use it to navigate between various apps. Swiping up will also reveal the back button which can be used within the apps.
You can learn more about how the Gestures work and how to implement it by watching the video below.
2) Digital Wellbeing
People, today, have no control over electronics they use. It’s true for me and probably is true for you too. It’s not a good thing, and Google knows it. So, they are introducing a set of new features to bring ‘wellbeing’ to your Digital life.
First, there’s Dashboard. This has to be the coolest update to the software. It is a new statistics UI which shows the pattern of your phone usage. It gives you information like:
- Time spent on the phone on a particular day
- Time spent per app
- No. of notifications received
- No. of times the phone is put to sleep and put back on
And it does so by showing graphs and charts. This feature aims to make users conscious about their usage of the phone.
But the company isn’t stopping there. On Android P, the user can set a restriction to himself/herself and specify the max time limit of app usage per day. If he/she exceeds app usage time, the specific app will grey out to discourage the user from further using it.
And lastly, there’s a new feature called “Wind Down”. What it does is turn your screen into grayscale when you end up spending hours interrupting your sleep pattern. Google believes that with these features turned on and activated, smartphones will be a lot less intrusive.
3) Artificial Intelligence (AI)
AI is a term that you will hear a lot in 2018. And what Google is doing here is pushing this technology to the next level.
The first use of AI in Android P is for Adaptive Brightness. No, it is not your regular auto brightness which gets the brightness wrong half of the time.
Instead of just relying on an Ambient light sensor, the AI algorithm learns your brightness adjustment behavior and adapts the brightness accordingly. Google is working on deep machine learning to make this possible.
The other killer feature is the Adaptive Battery. As the name suggests, it optimizes the battery performance by using on-device machine learning. This feature learns what app you use at what time of the day or week. Google tested this feature and found 30% reduction in CPU wake-ups and big overall improvements in battery life.
Google also announced significant improvements on the Google Assistant front. There are 7 new voices, better integration into the system and now Assistant can make calls to businesses and set you an appointment. We will talk more about the features of the Google Assistant in the next article.
What’s your favorite feature in Android P? Let us know in the comments section down below.