Android N: Coolest New Features
The unexpected release of Android N developer preview took the industry by storm.
While most of the tech analysts were discussing the future name and its availability, Google took the road less traveled and went all in with releasing the new iteration of the world's most popular OS.
Well, "all in" might sound like an overstatement as the only lucky users to get the release OTA are the ones who have signed up for it as developers and happen to have recent Nexus devices.
The firmware itself is in the alpha release so far, which means it can't be considered fully operational and it will crash from time to time - and it's already bricking devices for some overly eager users, yet there's a fix for it.
Let's see what the newest release packs under its hood. We've listed 5 most appealing features we hope will make it to the market release.
The long-awaited feature that's already being utilized by rival iOS devices is extremely handy to have on tablets, which was showcased by Pixel C that lacked it. Now you can step up with your productivity, including dragging-and-dropping text instead of copying it. The possibility of doing two things at once is a tremendous addition for those who move a notch past casual browsing.
Instead of getting two hundred different notifications that you have to sort through separately, similar notifications will now be bundled together in the upper drawer menu. With chronologic sorting, you can now read message threads without opening the app itself.
With incremental improvements that were introduced to Android over the past few years, it's still great to see some further steps in this direction.
With 7.0, you can now reply to message notifications without opening the app, directly from the status bar. Also, you can preview the entire message or an email without leaving the shade. Drag, read, reply - this seems to be the way to answer now.
Quick Settings Toggles And Options
In Android 7.0, users are allowed to create custom tiles by dragging them to the quick draw menu. Developers are also able to utilize this function so they use tiles for controls or actions that are urgently required or frequently used. Hopefully, this wouldn't be overused by devs and we won't have to scroll the Quick Settings menu.
While the recent Android versions let you set limits so you don't churn through your monthly data allowance, the N will give us a feature that will help us delay the onset of the said limit.
This new option is called Data Saver and it's designed to help your smartphone use less data. You can find it in the Settings menu, and the only thing you have to do to activate it is to toggle the switch. It's going to be really helpful for those with limited data plans or frequent travelers who use data while roaming.
Not only it will block the usage of background data, but also, foreground apps are going to consume fewer bytes overall with this setting on.
The feature, however, will not compress data, and the foreground performance will depend on the goodwill of apps' developers unless Google comes up with a punishment policy, which is highly likely considering its monopoly in the Play Store and harsh approach to uniformity in other services.
The Long Wait
Most of the current owners of non-Nexus devices are poised to receive the update in 2017, and before then, some of the current features may be entirely wiped out from the system's UI. Fingers crossed that all the features we've listed pass the beta status.
What's your opinion on the latest Android release? Are you excited to try it? Share it in the comments!