Google launches Android 12L OS for big screen and foldable devices
Following the launch of Android 12 for smartphones, Google, at Android Dev Summit, unveiled a new version of this operating system and it’s named – Android 12L. This version of Android is optimized with loads of new features designed especially for large screen and foldable devices.
So, why did Google launches Android 12L? Let’s take a look at some data shared by the U.S. tech maker.
Google says, there are a quarter-billion large screen devices running Android across tablets, foldable, and ChromeOS devices. In the last 12 months, there are nearly 100 million new Android tablet activations–a 20% year-over-year growth, while ChromeOS also grew by 92%.
The trend of foldable phones and their future demand can not be overlooked, the Foldable devices received year-on-year growth of over 265%. Furthermore, there are over 250 million active large screen devices running Android.
This large screen optimized Android operating system is designed for large screen devices and is currently available under developer preview testing. Aside from launching the new operating system, Google has also unveiled the latest Android 12L features onboard.
As detailed, the Android 12L brings new changes in the user interface and maximizes that for the large screen across notifications, quick settings, lock screen, overview, home screen, and other places of the UI. For example, the notification panel on a large screen now can be seen in two columns, the left side contains quick settings while the right part contains notifications.
There’s also a new taskbar on a large screen that instantly switches favorite apps on the home screen. This helps to deliver a better multi-tasking and split-screen experience on large screen devices.
With Android 12L, Android has also improved the visual and stability improvements to offer a better letterboxing experience for users and help apps look better by default. We’ve made letterboxing easily customizable by device manufacturers, who can now set custom letterbox colors or treatments, adjust the position of the inset window, apply custom rounded corners, and more.
Changes in Play Store:
Not only the UI and the features but Google is also intended to make new changes in the Play Store to highlight the apps for large-screen devices. Google announced to add new checks to assess each app’s quality against Google’s large screen app quality guidelines to ensure that we surface the best possible apps on those devices.
For apps that are not optimized for large screens, Google will start warning large screen users with a notice on the app’s Play Store listing page.
Google confirmed that Android 12 will launch early next year, this will be offered with the next generation of Android tablets and foldable devices.
First Android 14 Developer Beta announced, launch around HarmonyOS 4
Android 14 is the next software version for the Android ecosystem. On February 8, Google stepped ahead to begin the development of this major upgrade with the first developer beta.
Google has released the roadmap for the development, beta testing, platform stability, and the final release of Android 14, which reveals meet the launch of Huawei HarmonyOS 4 later in the second half of 2023.
The first developer preview is already out for the Pixel devices. However, Google could open early access to other smartphone makers such as OnePlus by April when the open beta campaign kicks off.
As mentioned by the Android company, Android 14 is projected to reach platform stability by the end of July. But there’s still a possibility of these milestone timelines to delay, similar to last year.
For your information, the Android 14 developer preview will be a very useful and early gift to the developer community. It will pave a way for the app devs to know more about the upcoming APIs and app features ahead of the final launch.
Looking into the developer preview features, Android 14 promises to improve productivity, enhances performance, improvements to security, and privacy, and bring new customizations.
Yes, there are new tweaks and changes made over Android 12, while there are more that will be visible as the development progress further. Throughout this phase, these developers (and later users) will help to fix bugs and make improvements to the Android 14 source code.
Aside from the Android 14 developer beta, Huawei is preparing for the HarmonyOS 3.1 rollout but the company is working on HarmonyOS 4 as a major release for the next generation of Huawei devices. For now, there’s no official launch date available but we are likely to hear more on this at the Huawei Developer Conference (HDC) 2023 event.
HarmonyOS 4 promises big upgrades over HarmonyOS 3 and a major restructure in the user interface (UI). Nonetheless, we’ll keep you posted.
(source – Android)
Despite being an Android babyface, Samsung failed to understand dynamic theme in 2022
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.
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.
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.
Below is the home screen, which looks as usual on both One UI 5 and stock Android 13.
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.
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).
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.
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.
On the flip side, stock Android gets these things done in the best way possible.
There’s further inspection on this available, apply Dark Mode and see the change.
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.
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.
MagicOS 7/Android 13 beta rolling out for Honor phones
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:
The phone is receiving MagicOS 126.96.36.199 upgrading from Magic UI 188.8.131.52.
Honor Magic 3 Series:
Honor Magic 3, Magic 3 Pro, and Magic 3 Supreme Edition are receiving MagicOS 184.108.40.206 upgrading from Magic UI 220.127.116.11.
Honor Magic 4 Series:
Honor Magic 4, Magic 4 Pro, and Magic 4 Supreme Edition getting MagicOS 7 version 18.104.22.168 version upgrading from Magic UI 22.214.171.124.
Honor V40 series is also eligible to download MagicOS 7 closed beta with version 126.96.36.199 users will have to download Magic UI 188.8.131.52 and 205 to participate in the beta activity.
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.
It’s noted that the active rollout is spreading as Log and Nolog software packages.
Currently, Honor is conducting these beta activities in China and it may soon open for global users of these devices.
- 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.