Trying to keep up with the update schedule that Google established last year with the Android N update, Google made their Android O official. Not just that they even launched developer preview images of the same which can be flashed on the Pixel devices or the Nexus 6P/5X.
However, these images are strictly for developers to test and try the new features and API’s so that they can develop updates for their app making the best use of newly available features. These developer preview images might contain many bugs which shall be ironed out in the future releases.
Unlike the Nougat beta program, where the beta update was made available as on OTA update for all users who signup on the Beta page, this year Google chose to provide the developer preview as a flashable file for now. This doesn’t mean that a public beta via OTA has been canceled, Google probably wants to iron out the major bugs and make the software more usable before making their Beta version live for the public.
So what exactly is new in Android O?
This new feature of Android O will restrict what usage of background process and limit the abilities of an app that is running in the background. This feature should cause some significant improvement in the battery life and performance of devices by limiting the resource usage of these devices.
Android O comes with an all new updated notification channel which lets the developer define the different types of notifications and the user will be able to decide what notifications he wants to block and what he wants to allow. Android O has also added an option for grouping of notifications which lets users have a look at the notifications in a glance without getting distracted. Developers will also be able to set background colors for critical notifications such as alarms or driving directions. There is also a new snooze feature which would make the notification disappear for a while and then return back when the user is not busy.
PiP mode (Picture in picture)
This feature was first seen on the Android TV and looks like with Android O this feature is coming to Android phones and tablets. This will let you watch videos while doing other stuff, very similar to the YouTube app where you can hit the back button while the video is still doing and go browse for some more interesting content.The PiP windows will also have playback control and Multi-Display support is finally coming to Android. Although this feature might be mainly for Chromebooks running on Android, it still is expected to bring a lot of difference.
Android is finally said to introduce Systemwide autofill which would let the password managers automatically input the credentials into other apps and web pages. This is going to be as an API and apps will be able to register themselves as autofill providers and make use of this new feature.
Apart from all these major features, Android O is said to introduce Font resources in XML, Support for adaptive icons, Wide gamut color for APPS thereby improving the RGB output. Other features like LDAC, WiFi aware are also in the book. WiFi aware is a feature that’ll make communication with nearby devices possible without a network access point. There is also going to be a telecom framework which would let third-party apps integrate with the system framework, thereby letting your favorite third-party VoIP apps to integrate with the system so that the call and reject buttons.