In 2019, mobile innovation is stronger than ever, with new technologies from 5G to edge-to-edge displays and even foldable screens.
Android is right at the center of this innovation cycle, and thanks to the broad ecosystem of partners across billions of devices, Android’s helping push the boundaries of hardware and software bringing new experiences and capabilities to users.
The first beta version of Google’s upcoming version of OS, the Android Q, is finally here.
Here are the Beta 1 features:
- Device location: Giving users more control over when apps can get location, including when the app is not in use (in the background). Users will be able to give apps permission to see their location never, only when the app is in use (running), or all the time (when in the background).
- Scoped storage: Giving more control over access to shared files. Users will be able to control apps’ access to Photos, Videos, and Audio collections via new runtime permissions. For Downloads, apps must use the system file picker, which allows the user to decide which Download files the app can access. Developers will also have to change how apps use shared areas on external storage.
- Background activity starts: Reduce interruptions like apps unexpectedly jumping into the foreground and taking over focus. Apps will be prevented from launching an Activity while in the background. Developers will still be able to get the user’s attention quickly — such as for incoming calls or alarms — with a high-priority notification or a full-screen intent.
- User data IDs: Limiting access to non-resettable device identifiers, including device IMEI, serial number, and similar identifiers. Android Q will also randomize the device’s MAC address when connected to different Wi-Fi networks by default (optional in Android 9 Pie).
- Foldable and innovative new screens: Apps will be able to take better advantage of these and other large-screen devices. Changes to onResume and onPause support multi-resume and notify your app when it has focus. The resizeableActivity manifest attribute now helps manage how your app is displayed on foldable and large screens.
- Sharing shortcuts: Faster sharing to other apps. Sharing Shortcuts, which let users jump directly into another app to share content, are getting faster. Developers can publish share targets that launch a specific activity in their apps with content attached, shown to users in the share UI instantly because they are published in advanced. Because Sharing Shortcuts is similar to how App Shortcuts works, the ShortcutInfo API now integrates both and is supported in the new ShareTarget AndroidX library (early sample app source code).
- Settings Panel: Show key system settings directly in the context of an app. The new Settings Panel API uses the Slices feature introduced in Android 9 Pie to give users a floating UI with relevant system settings (such as Wi-Fi, airplane mode, mobile data, NFC, and audio volume). There’s no need to leave the app.
- Connectivity permissions, privacy, and security: For Bluetooth, cellular, and Wi-Fi, the FINE location permission will be required. Wi-Fi standard support, WP3, and OWE, will also be included to improve security for home and work networks as well as open/public networks.
- Improved peer-to-peer and internet connectivity: The Wi-Fi stack has been refactored to improve privacy, performance, and common use-cases like managing IoT devices and suggesting internet connections. The network connection APIs will help apps initiate connection requests indirectly by specifying preferred SSIDs & BSSIDs as WiFiNetworkSpecifiers. The network suggestion APIs will let apps initiate connections indirectly by providing a ranked list of networks and credentials as WifiNetworkSuggestions. Android Q will handle the Wi-Fi scanning itself, display matching networks in a Wi-Fi Picker, and connect based on past performance when in range of those networks.
- Wi-Fi performance mode: High performance and low latency modes will let developers request adaptive Wi-Fi by calling WifiManager.WifiLock.createWifiLock() with WIFI_MODE_FULL_LOW_LATENCY or WIFI_MODE_FULL_HIGH_PERF. Google expects these to be useful for real-time gaming, active voice calls, and similar use-cases.
- Dynamic depth format for photos: Apps can request a Dynamic Depth image which consists of a JPEG, XMP metadata related to depth related elements, and a depth and confidence map embedded in the same file. Requesting a JPEG + Dynamic Depth image makes it possible for developers to offer specialized blurs, bokeh options, or use the data to create 3D images and support AR photography use-cases. Dynamic Depth will be an open format for the Android ecosystem.
- New audio and video codecs: Support for the open source video codec AV1, audio encoding using Opus, and HDR10+ for high dynamic range video. The MediaCodecInfo API will help determine the video rendering capabilities of an Android device (use VideoCodecCapabilities.getSupportedPerformancePoints() to get a list of supported sizes and frame rates).
- Native MIDI API: This API lets apps that perform their audio processing in C++ communicate with MIDI devices through the NDK. It allows MIDI data to be retrieved inside an audio callback using a non-blocking read, enabling low latency processing of MIDI messages (sample app source code).
- ANGLE on Vulkan: Experimental support for ANGLE, a graphics abstraction layer designed for high-performance OpenGL compatibility, on top of Vulkan. Apps and games that use OpenGL ES will be able to take advantage of the performance and stability of Vulkan and benefit from a consistent, vendor-independent implementation of ES. Android Q will support OpenGL ES 2.0 — ES 3.0 will come next.
- Vulkan everywhere: Google is working with device manufacturer partners to make Vulkan 1.1 a requirement on all 64-bit devices running Android Q and higher, and a recommendation for all 32-bit devices. Vulkan will thus become a uniform high-performance graphics API for apps and games to use.
- Neural Networks API 1.2: 60 new ops including ARGMAX, ARGMIN, quantized LSTM, alongside a range of performance optimizations. This will accelerate a much greater range of models — such as those for object detection and image segmentation. Google is working with hardware vendors and popular machine learning frameworks such as TensorFlow to optimize and roll out support for NNAPI 1.2
- ART performance: Improvements to the ART runtime that help apps start faster and consume less memory. Garbage collection overall has been made more efficient in terms of time and CPU, reducing jank and helping apps run better on lower-end devices.
BiometricPrompt has been extended to passive authentication methods such as a face, plus implicit and explicit authentication flows. Google has also improved the fallback for device credentials when needed.
- TLS 1.3 support has been added and enabled by default for all TLS connections. Google says its benchmarks indicate that secure connections can be established as much as 40 percent faster with TLS 1.3 compared to TLS 1.2.
- Compatibility through public APIs: Google is restricting access to more non-SDK interfaces and asking developers to use the public equivalents instead. The restrictions are only for apps targeting Android Q, so make sure to test accordingly. Use the StrictMode method detectNonSdkApiUsage() to warn when your app accesses non-SDK APIs via reflection or JNI.
- Modern Android: Google Play will require targetSdkVersion set to 28 (Android 9 Pie) in new apps and updates later this year. Android Q will warn users with a dialog when they first run an app that targets a platform earlier than API level 23 (Android Marshmallow). Also later this year, Google Play will require 64-bit support in all apps (developer guide).
There will be six betas in total. Here’s the preview schedule:
- March: Beta 1 (initial release, beta)
- April: Beta 2 (incremental update, beta)
- May: Beta 3 (incremental update, beta)
- June: Beta 4 (final APIs and official SDK, Play publishing, beta)
- Beta 5 (release candidate for testing)
- Beta 6 (release candidate for final testing)
- Q3: Final release to AOSP and ecosystem
Read here complete…
Apple opposing Huawei MatePod trademark, applied for new headphones
Recently, Huawei has published a new trademark opposition decision document that contains the relevant info about the Huawei MatePod trademark which is being opposed by Apple. It’s another trademark dispute of the smartphone maker with the other companies.
As per the information extracted from the document, the China base form has previously applied for the Huawei MatePod trademark name. It includes 9 kinds of international classifications under headphones electronic chips.
However, the US-based phone maker believes that its headphone collections- AirPods, EarPods are knowingly forged by the Chinese firm. Thus, it’s strictly opposed to using this name in practice. The company doesn’t want its customers to get confused.
The Chinese State Intellectual Property Office announced its verdict in favor of Huawei and grant the Huawei MatePod trademark name after giving a satisfactory clarification to Apple.
Although, the intellectual believes that the cited trademark (Apple accessories) and opposed trademark (Huawei MatePod) share the same functionality, marketing, and belong to the same industry. Still, the English latter composition, pronunciation, and overall appearance of both trademarks are easily recognizable.
Hence, there is no clashing scenario, so it won’t cause any confusion to the consumer of both companies. Moreover, the opponent’s claim of imitating the names hasn’t adequate facts, so the intellectuals are granting permission to Huawei.
Huawei Trademark Dispute:
Sony and Huawei: The Japanese company files a lawsuit against the Huawei Watch GT series in the UK IPO office. The reason was its famous racing game series Gran Turismo’ which is generally abbreviated as GT. However, the China-based firm isn’t easy to give up its famous smartwatch series label.
Xiaomi and Huawei: The Chinese Intellectual Property Database previously published a case dispute regarding Xiaomi’s “MiService” and Huawei’s “MyService” trademark. Containing almost similar pronunciation, and text style, Xiaomi’s trademark has been rejected.
Huawei CAF model bringing network competitiveness for operators: Marketing Chief
On behalf of Huawei, the company’s marketing and solution sales department president- Peng Song, addresses the 7th Ultra-Broadband Forum 2021. This 2-day conference is taking place in Dubai from 19th October.
At the event, President Song talks about network connection and growth under his speech entitled “Connect + New Growth”. It was mainly a short description of the Huawei CAF (Coverage/Architecture/Fusion) model which is bringing network competitiveness among the operators.
During his speech, Huawei President noted down that the CAF model is becoming a key to operators, which is opening new opportunities in the market. He further describes that although the past year was a bit challenging, we have seen tremendous changes.
Even the families are moving towards diversification from the single entertainment center. Today, people have merged the network connection for multiple functions such as education, office, and trade, which is no longer solely concerned with bandwidth.
Huawei CAF Network Model:
According to President Song, the extension and the integration of the connection are the main keynotes of the connection plus. It means, the continued acceleration of the digitalization process making the society recognize the importance of a stabilized and strong connection.
Based on this fact, Song Peng introduced the Huawei CAF network model where “C” denotes coverage, “A” denotes architecture, and “F” denotes fusion. Furthermore, there was an in-depth discussion about all three points at the event.
It mainly highlights the different points where a connection tries to reach different households and businesses. Considering today’s demands, operators need to provide the connection to every room for each device in a family. Furthermore, there are mainly two technologies currently leading this sector- AirPON and Digital Quick ODN solutions.
It refers to the algorithms where a connection needs to integrate with the cloud to enable digitization of the industry. However, it’s divided into two stages- the first one is to connect to the cloud. Meanwhile, the second stage is the difficult one and is coupled with cloud integration to gradually build an ecology.
This term lets us mainly focuses on exploring the network architecture that will support current and future business success. In addition, there were some leading technologies recommended by the president. It includes the use of copper-to-optical, OXC, SRv6, ADN, and other technologies.
Huawei to bring a plain leather version of Mate X2 foldable smartphone
Huawei has always provided a huge variety lits of its products for the customers in both markets. The products vary in terms of hardware configuration including display, camera, memory, battery, and processor, colors, and software features.
Besides all these variants, the smartphone maker also brings new editions of the previously introduced smartphones with new tweaks. Although the features and hardware components mostly remain the same, the company mainly modify the device’s appearance as well as added new functions.
Some reports show that this Shenzhen-based firm is going to introduce a new edition of its latest folding screen smartphone. According to our fruitful tipster- DigitalChatStation, the company is preparing a new plain leather version of Huawei Mate X2.
Yet, there is only limited information available about this subject. However, the tipster further informs that Huawei Mate X2 plain leather version will come with the Kirin 9000 processors with 5G network accessibility, which is really hopeful news for the users who were waiting for the company to return with 5G.
On top of this, the software capabilities will be powered by the HarmonyOS software system. Apart from all these, there are no other changes mentioned by him. It suggests that the rest configuration including hardware and software will be the same. Furthermore, he didn’t leave any clue about the availability of the plain leather version of the Huawei Mate X2 foldable.
Huawei Mate X2:
Huawei Mate X2 was initially launched in February 2021 featuring the two display systems combines with a new technology hinge. It makes the smooth switching from an 8-inch screen to a 6.45-inch screen. The smartphone is powered by a 5nm Kirin 9000 processor. In addition, it features a 5400 mAh large battery, supports a 55W SuperFast charge that is half chargeable within 30 minutes.
The camera system also works in the smartphone, even in the foldable state. This futuristic smartphone has a 50MP quad-camera system of Leica lenses with 100x zoom capabilities. Aside from the specs, the color scheme in Crystal Blue, Crystal Pink, White, Black are another highlight in the device.