• June 25, 2022

Google releases new features on Android Q

Google in a new blog post has stated that this year, Android is reaching version 10 and operating on over 2.5 billion active devices.

With a lot of changes since version 1.0 when smartphones were just an early idea, they’re now an integral tool in our lives­; helping us stay in touch and organising our days.

With the future in mind, Google is focused on working with partners to shape the future of mobile and make smartphones more helpful.

“As people carry their phones constantly and trust them with lots of personal information, we want to make sure they’re always in control of their data and how it’s shared.”

Google revealed in a blogpost

In view of this, there are three key areas the company is focusing on for the release of Android Q: innovation, security and privacy, and digital wellbeing.

New mobile experiences

Together with over 180 device makers, Android has been at the forefront of new mobile technologies. Many of them—like the first OLED displays, predictive typing, high density and large screens with edge-to-edge glass—have come to Android first. 

This year, new industry trends like foldable phone displays and 5G are pushing the boundaries of what smartphones can do. Android Q is designed to support the potential of foldable devices—from multi-tasking to adapting to different screen dimensions as you unfold the phone.

And as the first operating system to support 5G, Android Q offers app developers tools to build for faster connectivity, enhancing experiences like gaming and augmented reality.

Google is also seeing many firsts in software driven by on-device machine learning. One of these features is Live Caption. For 466 million deaf and hard of hearing people around the world, captions are more than a convenience—they make content more accessible.

The company worked closely with the Deaf community to develop a feature that would improve access to digital media. With a single tap, Live Caption will automatically caption media that’s playing audio on your phone. Live Caption works with videos, podcasts and audio messages, across any app—even stuff you record yourself.

Security and privacy as a central focus

Android has over the years built out many industry-first security and privacy protections, like file-based encryption, SSL by default and work profile. They also have the most widely-deployed security and anti-malware service of any operating system today thanks to Google Play Protect, which scans over 50 billion apps every day. 

Google promises to even do more in Android Q, with almost 50 new features and changes focused on security and privacy.

Below are a few updates in security and privacy:

  • Dedicated Privacy section under settings, where you’ll find important controls in one place.
  • Under Settings, you’ll also find a new Location section that gives you more transparency and granular control over the location data you share with apps.
  • Users can now choose to share location data with apps only while they’re in use.
  • Protections for other sensitive device information, like serial numbers.
  • Faster security and privacy updates for users.

Helping you find balance

Since creating our set of Digital Wellbeing tools last year, the app timers have reportedly helped people stick to their goals over 90 percent of the time, and people who use Wind Down had a 27 percent drop in nightly phone usage.

This year, Google going even further with new features like Focus mode, which is designed to help you focus without distraction. Users can select the apps they find distracting such as email or the news, and silence them until they come out of Focus mode.

 And to help children and families find a better balance with technology, the company is making Family Link part of every device that has Digital Wellbeing (starting with Android Q), plus adding top-requested features like bonus time and the ability to set app-specific time limits.

Available in Beta today

Android Q brings many more new features to your smartphone, from a new gesture-based navigation to Dark Theme, to streaming media and also to hearing aids using Bluetooth LE. 

You can find some of these features today in Android Q Beta, and thanks to Project Treble and other partners for their commitment to enable faster platform updates, Beta is available for 21 devices from 13 brands, including all Pixel phones.

Edward Kyei Frimpong-Mybeeponline

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