All you need to know about Google Android Q
Android Q, Google's new mobile OS, will arrive as a significant update over the existing Android 9 Pie version. At its I/O 2019 event, Google has released Android Q Beta 3 while revealing some of the new features like Live Caption, Focus mode, system-wide dark theme, and other privacy and security features. Here's a closer look at the Android Q's top features.
System-wide dark mode
With the latest iteration, Google has finally introduced a system-wide dark mode on Android. This much-needed feature offers a UI with a dark theme, allowing for reduced eye strain and battery saving, at least on OLED screens. Developers will be able to build their own dark themes, or they can choose a new Force Dark feature that lets the OS create a dark theme.
New controls for privacy and security
Android Q Beta 3 gets new privacy settings, giving users more control over their data and location. Under the new features, users have greater choice over when to give an app access to location while Scoped Storage limits storage access as much as possible, even for apps. Privacy features also include blocking of unwanted app launches in the background and prevents online tracking.
Gestural navigation and smart replies
In Android Q, Google has introduced a new fully gestural navigation mode that removes the navigation bar area. Now, you can trigger Back, Home, and Recents navigation through bottom-edge swipes. There's also Smart Reply and Actions features which enable system-provided smart responses that are inserted directly into notifications by default. Moreover, developers can also provide their own replies and actions.
Live Caption and Focus Mode
Live Caption is a brand new on-device captioning tool that lets the system provide captions for audio messages, videos, podcasts, and others, across any app. Google has also introduced a new Focus Mode feature as part of its Digital Wellbeing initiative. It allows users to silence apps they find distracting as long as they are in Focus Mode. These features will arrive in Fall.
Google has also announced Project Mainline for device security
Google is also introducing a new framework called Project Mainline. The tech giant says it is a "new approach to keeping Android users secure and their devices up-to-date with important code changes, direct from Google Play", without requiring device makers to issue an update.
Other new features and improvements
Google is also introducing Family Link parental controls built into the Settings menu. It allows parents to connect to their child's device and control things like screen time limits, review app usage, and even set a device bedtime. Other notable features include improved peer-to-peer and Internet connectivity, Wi-Fi improvements, audio playback capture, Dynamic Depth for photos, and new audio as well as video codecs.
Here's everything to know about the Beta 3 update
Android Q Beta 3 is now available for 21 devices including all Google Pixel phones, ASUS ZenFone 5Z, Essential Phone, Huawei Mate 20 Pro, OnePlus 6T, OPPO Reno, Realme 3 Pro, Vivo X27, and others. Notably, Pixel smartphone users will have to enroll their devices with the Android Beta programme to receive Android Q Beta 3 OTA update.