Google releases new Android and WearOS features: Check what's new
Google is releasing a bunch of new Android features in celebration of the upcoming holiday season. These features aim to provide a better experience across Google Photos, YouTube, Wear OS, and other systems. One notable facility is that the Android reading mode now has support for visually challenged individuals. Also, the Gboard gets new emojis such as snowman and snowflake.
Why does this story matter?
- The Christmas season has kicked in and there couldn't have been a better time for Google to release its new bundle of holiday-themed updates.
- The upgrades cover WearOS, the company's operating system for smartwatches and wearables as well as its most famous apps, including Google Photos and YouTube.
- What's commendable is that the company is demonstrating inclusivity by developing features for visually challenged individuals.
The Reading Mode on Android has customizable display features
Google's new Reading Mode includes features that make reading easier for the blind, low-vision, or dyslexic individuals. Once the update has been installed on your device, you will be able to access several customizable display options when reading from webpages and apps. These settings include adjusting contrast, the type of font and its corresponding size, and the text-to-speech function with speed control.
Design templates from two famous artists have been included
Google Photos has incorporated new templates in its collage editor from designers such as Australian-couple visual artists DABSMYLA and the famous watercolor artist Yao Cheng Design. All you have to do to access these new artist-designed styles is simply pick your favorite photos, add them to the 'collage' option and you can experiment with the various layouts which have been offered.
YouTube has a revamped search widget for your home screen
You can also browse through content more easily with YouTube's new home screen search widget. You can track Shorts, your list of subscriptions, or library of videos from one place. The Google TV app is also getting updated. You will be able to cast directly from the app to a compatible TV with a single tap. The feature will arrive next week.
You can access your to-do list from your watch
Starting next week, you will be able to access more than 30 types of exercises from the Adidas running app. Google Assistant will immediately perk up when you say "Hey Google, start a run with Adidas Running." The speed, distance, and heart rate during the workout will be monitored via your smartwatch. Google Keep, the note-taking app, has also been updated on Wear OS.
You can share the digital car key with others
With digital car key, you can remotely lock/unlock your car or even turn it on by using your phone. And now, you will be allowed to share the 'digital key' with friends and family using a Pixel or iPhone. Select smartphones running Android 12 and above will also get the feature. You can track who has access to your vehicle via digital wallet app.