Google has rolled out the first Developer Preview of Android P. The first Android P Developer Preview provides the first look at the upcoming Android OS and its features. Since it is a developer preview, the features are set for the testing purpose for now. Also, the Android P Developer Preview is available only for Google Pixel devices as of now.
The Android P Developer Preview hints that a lot of new features and design changes are coming with the next Android OS. Some of the changes include a refreshed look for the settings menu, notifications, quick settings and others. Interestingly, Google is also incorporating the recently popularized iPhone X-like notch design in stock Android, making it easier for OEMs to launch phones with a notch.
What’s new in Android P
Unlike Android 8.0 Oreo, Android P seems to be coming with a lot of new features. Here are some of the most important features of Android P.
Notch display support
It looks like notch display is the future of smartphones. After the iPhone X was launched last year, phone makers have been trying to adopt the notch display on their smartphones. So, to promote this Google is adding support for display cut-outs that will allow developers to upload apps that support the different sizes of notches.
Android P Developer Preview 1 comes with an option under ‘Device Theme’ that has options related to a notch design. It has options like narrow, wide and even tall display cut-out which accordingly can add a notch display on the top of the device. The notch display is expected to be seen on many upcoming Android phones including the OnePlus 6.
For notifications, more information and smart replies are coming to Android now. The Android P preview reveals that Google has improved the notification panel, especially for messaging apps. Now, users will be able to view more information including photos and stickers directly from the notification bar.
Other features of Android P include volume buttons changing media volume instead of ringer volume, which is also the default. Google has also repositioned the volume slider to the right. Do Not Disturb will now have only an On/Off toggle instead of the earlier options such as Silent, Alarms Only etc.
Another big feature is for the precision of indoor location tracking which has been made by the introduction of WiFi Round-Trip-Time (RTT) on the Android P. Apart from above-mentioned features, there are more features and those are expected once the final version rolls out.
Eligible devices and timeline
First of all, Android P developer preview will officially be supported on Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel 2, and Pixel 2 XL devices. Google has also said that more details around Android P will be shared at Google’s upcoming annual I/O conference in May 2018. Google also shared the official timeline for the final release of AOSP and ecosystem of Android P which is planned for Q3 2018.