Android P with developer preview about the upcoming Android 9.0 operating system

Android P Developer Preview is out this week, and the whole Android community is combing through it looking for changes. When Android P is released later this year, it will bring an all-new notification panel, new settings, official notch support, and a ton of other tiny changes.

Other changes that users may see is staring you right in the face in the image below: a tweaked look for the Quick Settings panel and notification drawer with rounded corners.

New look for notifications from messaging apps: they will be able to include recent lines from your conversation if you want to reply inline right inside the notification. It’s similar to how iOS iMessage notifications, but without all that force-touch fuss. Apps will also be able to include “Smart replies” images, and stickers directly in the notification

android p preview version
android p available preview developer
  • A multi-camera API android app can individually request the data from more than one camera sensor at once. So for dual camera smartphone, there will be a standard way for apps to more control them.
  • Google is about to start “a gradual process to restrict access to selected non-SDK interfaces.”  That’s code for “use the public APIs that we have created for Android or might someday your app won’t work”. The company is taking this one slowly and is encouraging developers to reach out if their app isn’t covered
  • Google is also warning developers that Android P is going to start throwing up warning boxes at users when they install apps that “targets a platform earlier than Android 4.2.” Basically, if you’re not using a recent SDK for your app, Google will make you feel bad by making your users distrust your app a little. It’s also going to expect that apps submitted to the Google Play store target Android Oreo in November and, in 2019, that they support 64-bit hardware.
  • Improved performance for ART and apps written in Kotlin.
  • Support for Wi-Fi RTT (Round-Trip-Time), which allows apps to get indoor positioning data down to a meter or two. It works by measuring the distance to various Wi-Fi access points.
  • Autofill, which should make it easier for password managers to enter your password for you so you aren’t constantly doing a switch-apps-and-copy-and-switch-apps-and-paste
  • “Android P restricts access to mic, camera, and all SensorManager sensors from apps that are idle.” If an app is in the background and not active, they won’t be able to access your microphone. This is a huge bummer for Facebook-is-listening-to-you conspiracy theorists. ♥

Google promises we’ll have four more developer preview releases to try out before the final release, which will be sometime in Q3. In the meantime, we’ll likely hear a ton more about the OS at Google I/O, which is just two months away.

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