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Google Android 12 Features: Developer Beta 2

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To date, Android is the most used mobile phone operating system across the globe. As of now, Google has revealed the 11 versions of Android and currently working on its upcoming version, Android 12.

Ahead of stable rollout, Google is creating excitement among the consumer and disclosing some features with every Android 12 Developer Preview. We are still around 4 to 5 months away from a stable launch and in this journey, the company will unveil a bunch of new features and improvements but, it will not unlock all of its cards at once.

Last month, Google released the first Developers Preview of Android 12 that brought new features including new accent color, notifications, quick settings, lock screen, AVIF image support, and much more.

Now, Google is delivering the Android 12 Second Developers Preview for pixel devices, which comes with lots of newly added features. The interested Pixel users can download and check the full timeline of Android 12 beta to the stable release.

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Let’s take a look at new features and changes, which are introduced with Android 12 second beta for developers listed and detailed below.

Google Android 12

App overlay controls – The Android system alert will now provide controls for whether these app overlays need to be shown on the top of the active app. Android’s system alert window gives apps a way to get user’s attention for important actions by showing then overlay on the top of the active app which can interrupt the users.

Extended security for lock screen notification actions – The Android 12 adds more security to the controls over the notifications displayed on the lock screen. The users will now be able to configure the notification actions, so when these are accessed from the notifications it will show authentication besides revealing it. This extends the notification visibility controls already available through the notification APIs.

Access to app digests – For apps that need to validate the integrity of app packages installed on Android devices, we’re introducing a new API that lets you query the platform directly for the checksum of an installed app. You can choose from several digest algorithms such as SHA256, SHA512, Merkle Root, and others.

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Support for Rounded corners – As per the trend, Google has also added rounded corner functionality on the screen to provide a clean and modern look. To deliver a great UX on these devices, developers need to account for the rounded corners and adjust any nearby UI elements to prevent them from being truncated.

Picture in Picture (PIP) improvements – In the scenario of multitasking, the picture-in-picture function is the one that needs to be accessed easily access by the users. Google is making improvements to its PIP mode with the latest version.

Apps transition to picture-in-picture (PIP) mode on swipe up-to-home has now been improved. If an app enables auto-PIP, the system now directly transitions the app to PIP mode on up-to-home, instead of waiting for the up-to-home animation to complete.

Keeping companion device apps awake – Companion devices such as smartwatches and fitness trackers that are needed to be managed through smartphones has also received something new for ease of use. Google is expanding the Companion Device Manager with a new CompanionDeviceService API. Apps that manage companion devices can implement this service to let the system wake the app whenever the companion device is nearby.

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Bandwidth estimation improvements – The Android 12 will provide an improves bandwidth estimation for the developers who need to know bandwidth available for users over the services. The bandwidth estimation has been enhanced to let users retrieve an estimate of aggregate throughput per carrier or Wi-Fi SSID, network type, and signal level, for all users on the device.

Easier blurs, color filters, and other effects –  In Android 12, we’re making it easier to apply common graphics effects to your Views and rendering hierarchies. Now, RenderEffect can be applied to blurs, add color filters, and more to any RenderNode.

This allows you to blur the contents of an ImageView without having to get the bitmap data, process the image, create a new Bitmap, and set it back into the ImageView. RenderEffect leverages the existing rendering pipeline to minimize excess calculation.

(Source)

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Also, Check:

Google Android 12: Latest News, Features and Launch date

Amy is our firmware and software specialist, she keeps her eagle eyes open for new software rollouts, beta programs, and other software related activities as well as new smartphone launch.

Android

Despite being an Android babyface, Samsung failed to understand dynamic theme in 2022

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Samsung

2022 is the year of Android 13 and Android phone makers spotted sending this software update with improved dynamic theme options, but as a babyface, it seems like Samsung still has not learned the core concepts of the dynamic theme.

Introduced with Android 12, the Material You powered dyanamic theme brings brand new settings to tweak the user interface. Instead of being just a feature, the dynamic theme became a part of Android’s soul. With Android 13, Google further polished the dynamic theme so it could be adapted to all Android devices.

Dynamic Theme (Simple version): Once you apply a new wallpaper, the phone generates a range of colors based on that wallpaper. The set of colors is called a color palette and it is then applied throughout the user interface.

Following the decline of Huawei, Samsung is enjoying unlimited Android prowess. It’s projected as a major Android promoter and a babyface. And why not? After all, the South Korean phone maker keeps on posting new mobile shipment records.

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However, the handling of the dynamic theme in One UI 5 (which is based on Android 13) shows that Samsung wasn’t serious about being an Android babyface in 2022.

You may want to know, how I reached this conclusion and why Samsung is a failure when it comes to precise work. Let’s find out together.

Appearance:

The user interface is all about appearance, and so does the dynamic theme. Using the dynamic theme on Samsung One UI 5 is different from stock Android 13.

Note: I’ve used the same pixel wallpaper on both Samsung and Pixel devices. So, we can keep the comparison on the same level.

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Home Screen:

Below is the home screen, which looks as usual on both One UI 5 and stock Android 13.

home screen

Quick Settings:

Both of the quick settings are using Material You in elements, such as quick access icons and sliders. However, the background on stock Android 13 is solid and remains black. On the other hand,  Samsung uses a translucent background in the quick settings, which has not changed even with the Android 13. It is Samsung’s way of implementing features. While in some scenarios, this way obstructs the viewing experience.

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Quick settings

For example, the translucent background is now reflecting the colors of the app opened in the background. It also compromises the look and feel of the quick settings icons and the whole quick settings UI. But it becomes subtle when used on top of the Settings menu.

Below you can check the example of the quick settings opened over the following screens.

(Left – on top of home screen wallpaper, on top of Play Store, on top of Settings menu).

Quick Settings

Settings:

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The setting is an important part of UI, which we access at least once a day. The layout, font, and elements are different in these two softwares. But Samsung used a slight proportion of the color palette in the Settings’ background and remain neutral for applying to the rest of the user interface.

Settings menu

Themed Icons:

I love themed icons because it brings a new look to the app icons. However, Samsung’s way of doing things is a little more disappointing than what it actually looks.

Below you can check Samsung One UI icons painted with color pallets alongside stock android icons. The use and management of contrast in the background and tint on the shape (size too) are super lazy on One UI app icons.

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On the flip side, stock Android gets these things done in the best way possible.

themed icons

There’s further inspection on this available, apply Dark Mode and see the change.

dark mode

Verdict:

We don’t need to explain the results. But It is certainly not nice to implement the dynamic theme for the Android babyface Samsung in 2022.

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What could’ve happened?

If possible, Samsung should’ve to blend more into the material rather than bleed into the material. Improve icons, and check visibility levels of the UI elements and the current issues may resolve to an extent.

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Android

MagicOS 7/Android 13 beta rolling out for Honor phones

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Honor MagicOS 7 eligible devices

Last month, Honor announced Android 13 based MagicOS 7 and its beta is now rolling out for several models. The rollout is confirmed on various models mentioned in the official roadmap.

According to the information, Honor MagicOS 7 is released for closed beta testers and selected participants will move to public beta in the next phase. After completing the beta test, Honor will send stable MagicOS 7.

Let’s look into the models and their corresponding Honor MagicOS 7/Android 13 beta versions:

Honor Magic V:

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The phone is receiving MagicOS 7.0.0.101 upgrading from Magic UI 6.0.0.185.

Honor Magic v Android 13 magicos 7

Honor Magic 3 Series:

Honor Magic 3, Magic 3 Pro, and Magic 3 Supreme Edition are receiving MagicOS 7.0.0.107 upgrading from Magic UI 6.0.0.139.

honor magic 3

Honor Magic 4 Series:

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Honor Magic 4, Magic 4 Pro, and Magic 4 Supreme Edition getting MagicOS 7 version 7.0.0.108 version upgrading from Magic UI 6.0.0.178.

Honor magic 4

Honor V40:

Honor V40 series is also eligible to download MagicOS 7 closed beta with version 7.0.0.121 users will have to download Magic UI 4.0.0.201 and 205 to participate in the beta activity.

honor v40

MagicOS 7:

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Honor MagicOS 7.0 is a people-centered intelligent interconnection ecosystem, it continues to improve AI Services. The software is also released with a personalized OS, protects privacy and security proactively, and updated the accessibility operation.

honor magicos 7

Beta:

It’s noted that the active rollout is spreading as Log and Nolog software packages.

Global:

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Currently, Honor is conducting these beta activities in China and it may soon open for global users of these devices.

Notes:

  • All of the eligible Honor smartphone owners must have to download the required firmware version before upgrading to MagicOS 7 closed beta.
  • During the closed beta testing, users are recommended to join the software user experience improvement program. You can report or suggest features to support closed beta testing environments.
  • This software update won’t erase your data but it’s recommended for you to make a backup of important files.
  • Users are suggested to update system apps to meet the compatibility.

(source – Honor 1, 2, 3, Reddit)

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Google releases new Android features with reading mode, creative emojis, and more

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Google Android features reading mode

Google is releasing a huge bundle of new Android features including advanced reading mode, innovative emojis, a useful pic editor, and many more. Eventually, these tweaks will offer effective and improved functioning to your device.

As per the inputs, the US tech giant is celebrating the holiday season. And to bring exclusive benefits to its users, the company has extended Android’s feature section with various goodies-like elements.

To begin with, Google has added a new reading mode to the Android features list. It counts as an accessibility feature and helps in reading and extracting text from web pages and other eligible applications.

Moreover, it provides customizing options for display, fonts, speed, and more. As a result, you can adjust the brightness, and font size, or can use the text-to-speech option (with speed control) to access the web pages more efficiently.

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Being an accessibility feature, the reading mode is very useful for those with vision impairments, or low eyesight problems. You can check and install the latest reading mode app from HERE.

Google Photos – Pic Editor

Yes, the US manufacturer has added a new collage editor to the Photos application. Consequently, you can create ultimate collages and give a new look to your memories. Just pick a handful of images, select the design or templates, and arrange the snaps accordingly by the simple drag-and-drop method.

A cluster of new emojis!

To enhance the chat experience, Google has tossed several new emojis in the Gboard. Since it’s the holiday season, you will find some relatable emojis such as holiday flair, wolf stickers, snowflakes, and more.

YouTube Search Widget and Google TV features

Now you will find a new search widget on YouTube’s home screen. Ultimately, this will help you to have a quick search of your libraries, shorts, and other subscription content without puzzling between several tabs or sections.

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Meanwhile, the company has made the functions of Google TV more convenient. Now you can directly cast the phone objects, and services on your Google TV as well as browse other apps with just one tap. To access the app, click HERE.

Digital Car Key

Now you can lock or turn on your car by just using your smartphone. The company has installed the digital car key feature in the Google Wallet in such a manner that within a few steps you can access your smart vehicle.

Furthermore, you can share your digital car key with your friend and family. This also allows you to keep an eye on who is accessing your car, using the Google Wallet app.

In addition to these features, Google is also performing some tick-tacks to its Wear OS. The latest information suggests that the company is making the Wear OS widgets and tiles more efficient to use. Alongside this, it is also upgrading some major apps.

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So Android users, enjoy this holiday season with new and bashing features on your smart gadgets.

Google Android features reading mode

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