Android Q is anticipated to release in the second half of this year
Android Q, the next substantial version of the Google operating system, is anticipated to release in the second half of this year and will succeed Android 9 Pie.
Before fresh versions of Android debut, Google releases beta builds of the software that provide a glimpse into some of the operating system’s best features.
Android Q is no different in this regard with the Mountain View firm releasing its first beta on March 13.
While the software’s array of features is set to expand ahead of its full release, here is Express.co.uk’s list of the best currently offered in Android Q.
Google is introducing a number of new app permissions in Android Q that are designed to make the operating system for secure for fans.
In particular, Android Q provides users with greater power to choose when apps are allowed to gather data, specifically location information.
If an app requests access to location data in Q, users are presented with three options.
• Allow all the time
• Allow only while the app is in use
The second option is new in Q and does as it says; the software in question will only be able to take advantage of location information when it is open.
Google is introducing a number of new app permissions in Android Q
In a recent post on its Android Developers Blog, Google also discussed new privacy protections present in Q.
These include controlling app access to photos, video and more.
Regarding the changes, Google said: “Beyond changes to location, we’re making further updates to ensure transparency, give users control, and secure personal data.
“In Android Q, the OS gives users even more control over apps, controlling access to shared files. Users will be able to control apps’ access to the Photos and Videos or the 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.”
Google has stated it is improving how sharing works in Android Q.
The firm has announced a new feature dubbed “sharing shortcuts” that seeks to make it simple for users to transition from one app to another in order to share content.
Discussing the functionality, Google said: “When a user wants to share content like a photo with someone in another app, the process should be fast.
“In Android Q we’re making this quicker and easier with Sharing Shortcuts, which let users jump directly into another app to share content.”
Google has stated it is improving how sharing works in Android Q
Simpler Wi-Fi connectivity
Although the functionality was not detailed by Google in its recent blog post about Android Q, those that have downloaded the beta have discovered the operating system makes sharing Wi-Fi passwords with friends and family more simple.
CNET recently showcased an image of the software’s Wi-Fi settings that has a new toggle allowing fans to create a QR code for a particular network.
Once this has been completed, the user is then able to share the QR code with others to allow for more intuitive connectivity.
CNET recently showcased an image of the new Wi-Fi feature in action
A system-wide dark mode could be coming
Although the Android Q beta does not provide users with a toggle for turning on a system-wide dark mode, there are a few indicators that suggest such a function is coming.
At the moment if the user turns on their device’s battery saver mode a number of backgrounds in system apps adopt a new black aesthetic.
Android 9 Pie currently has a dark theme, however it is not system-wide.
That means when it is enabled only limited parts of the software take on such a design such as the app drawer and notification shade.
This means if the user wants to turn on a dark mode in Google’s Messages app for instance, they still need to head into the programme and turn it on manually.
Android Q could introduce a system-wide dark mode for fans
Giving a better estimate of remaining battery life
As noted by The Verge, when the user pulls down the quick settings menu in Android Q the software will not only tell you how much battery life you have, but now an estimate of how long the charge is expected to last is also provided.
However, the outlet noted the estimate does not appear to be completely accurate in the beta and will quickly change depending on usage cases.
In the screenshot shown it was said the Pixel 3 XL in use would last two days and four hours on a single charge.
However, the publication stated the hardware in question has never lasted that long in the past.
The Verge recently discussed Android Q’s new battery estimate feature
Smartphone notches are now present in screenshots
When you take a screenshot in the current Android Q beta the photo in question will now feature a cutout for the notch of the device in question.
The Verge posted a screengrab taken from a Pixel 3 XL that showcased the phone’s thick cutout at the top.
At the moment there is not an option to disable showing notches in screenshots.
However, it is possible Google will add such a toggle before the final build of the operating system releases.