Apple recently released new MacBook Air and iPad Pro models, and now, Google has released the second preview build of its latest mobile operating system, Android 11.
Here are all the new features it has on offer.
No major user-facing features
Like the first preview, the second one is also aimed at developers, instead of the public, and includes new APIs and developer options instead of user-facing capabilities.
The release is not available via official OTA update, which means you'd have to download and flash it manually on the supported Pixel line of phones - Pixel 2, 3, 3a or 4.
Hinge angle detection
The first big change in this release is an API that enables the OS to detect the angle at which the hinge of a foldable phone is bent and relay that information to the app opened at that time.
This could eventually allow apps to use different screen states and adapt according to the advantage/convenience of the end-user.
5G state API for improved experiences
The new build also brings an API that enables the OS to detect when a 5G connection is active on a phone.
This information, when relayed to apps, would allow developers to enable experiences that demand a high-speed 5G connection. For instance, enhanced graphics in games.
The apps would reportedly also show a 5G sign when they are tapping on a 5G network.
Feature #3, #4
New APIs for robocalls and variable refresh rates
Among other things, the release also brings new APIs to screen robocalls better, and allow variable refresh rates.
The former would enable apps to check a call's SHAKEN/STIR status to decide if it is spam, while the latter would handle variable refresh rates at a system level, saving developers from building their own solutions to match 90 and 120Hz screens.
More user-facing features to be revealed later
For now, that is what the new Android 11 build has on offer. We expect to see more consumer-facing features from Google in the coming months as the OS moves into public beta stages.