O Google I / O 2021 served as a stage for some news from the Android 12, but many were left out of the event or received little attention. The good news is that Android 12 Beta 1 is now available for download. With that, “secrets” of the new version are beginning to be revealed. You can check some below.
Google Assistant with shortcuts and widgets
If you use or have had any experience with the Google Assistant, you know that the tool can be useful in several ways. Google wants to increase that sense of usefulness with shortcuts and widgets.
This is an interesting novelty because it will allow Google Assistant to integrate with third-party applications more easily. This integration already exists, but it is very limited. In the current phase, the assistant can receive commands to open apps or play on an audio player, for example, but it doesn’t go much beyond that.
The shortcut function within the Google Assistant was introduced in 2020 and, in Android 12, it will be definitively incorporated. The user will be able to count on a varied list of shortcuts within the Google Assistant gallery to carry out the most diverse actions in applications, such as ordering lunch in a delivery app.
Just as or more interesting is the integration with third party widgets. With this new feature, Google Assistant will be able to extract certain information without having to open the main application.
Suppose, as an example, that you want to check how many kilometers you have traveled with Strava; upon receiving this command, the Google Assistant will be able to open a Strava widget instead of a specific app screen.
Warning for apps that copy data
This is perhaps the most useful new feature in Android 12. As we said here in Tecnoblog, the operating system will alert the user to applications that access the data on the clipboard.
If this data corresponds to a barcode on a boleto, for example, it is natural for the bank application to access this information when you want to pay that bill. However, it is unreasonable for a social networking app to access this data, especially without the user knowing it.
Well, Android 12 will be able to “sneak out” applications that access the content copied to the clipboard. If this action is expected, that’s fine. If not, well, it’s time to turn on the switch.
Pending apps on the home screen
A user using the profile @outbraegeous on Twitter he is testing Android 12 Beta on a Pixel 5 phone. He has discovered a curious feature: the operating system displays a darkened icon on the home screen that indicates that the application is pending, that is, it has not yet been fully downloaded.
A border around the icon reveals the progress of the app download. This feature can be useful for showing the installation progress of a large game, for example.
However, it is still unclear whether this is a native feature of Android 12, a feature linked to the Pixel Launcher or, still, something linked to the Google Play Store. Since many testers were unable to enable this feature, it is possible that the feature is nothing more than an A / B test conducted by Google.
Android 12 hibernates unused apps
If not everyone, most users have little-used apps on their cell phones. On Android 12, you can make these apps hibernate. This mode revokes the permissions of the applications to reduce the risk of security problems and optimizes the space occupied by them (temporary files are eliminated, for example).
Applications will be able to hibernate automatically if they are not accessed for several months (apparently three months). For the app to “wake up”, just access it again.
Ringtones and recharge animations
It is not new that Android 12 will have design based on the concept Material You, which makes the interface more personal and adaptable to different screen sizes. The visual change involves even small details, such as animations.
The beta version of the operating system shows an animation with a brilliant effect when the user touches buttons and other resources (however, it is difficult to see this effect in screenshots). If the button is pressed for some time, the glow effect will continue to manifest, but close to the edges.
It does not end there: when the cell phone is placed for battery recharging, a new circular animation will be displayed. If charging is done with a cable, the circle will appear in the center of the screen; if by induction (wireless), the circle effect will start at the bottom edge and go upwards.
Less confusing toast notifications
One toast notification displays complementary information to the user in small balloons that disappear on their own after a certain time limit. This feature is not new, but in Android 12, it will receive aesthetic changes to be more contextualized and elegant.
To start, the balloon will assume the same color pattern activated in the operating system (in Android 11, the balloon is white). In addition, the icon of the application that generated the notification will appear to the left of the message and it should be as short as possible. Thus, Android 12 will make toast notifications less confusing for the user.
Another noticeable change in the beta version: the animations that show the balloon appearing and disappearing have become smoother compared to Android 11.
How to download Android 12 Beta
The final version of Android 12 will be released in the third quarter of 2021. If you don’t want to wait until then, you can test the beta versions (if your phone is eligible for that). Android 12 Beta 1 was released on Tuesday (18) for the following smartphones:
- Asus Zenfone 8 (ZS590KS)
- Google Pixel 3, 3 XL, 3a, 3a XL, 4, 4 XL, 4a, 4a (5G), 5
- Nokia X20
- OnePlus 9 and 9 Pro
- Oppo Find X3 Pro (CPH2173)
- Realme GT
- Sharp Aquos R6
- TCL 20 Pro 5G
- Tecno Camon 17
- Vivo iQOO 7 Legend
- Xiaomi Mi 11, Mi 11 Ultra, Mi 11i and Mi 11X Pro
- ZTE Axon 30 Ultra 5G (China)
An updated list of compatible devices and installation guidelines can be found on the Android 12 website.
With information: Android Police , , , , ; XDA Developers , .