Since the release of android Nougart, few have kept up with the pace of new features that come with every new Android version. Google’s latest update code-named Android Pie(Android 9.0) does not disappoint in that respect. In fact, this latest update is focused on making the mobile experience more organized and calm. Currently, the rollout has begun for Google’s pixel phones with other mobile manufacturers set to follow suit. The biggest part of the update is the increased dependence of AI and machine learning that adapts to the users’ habits through leaning.
The new software grants access to huge new features such as Adaptive Battery that harnesses the power of machine learning to improve device life overall. Some of the key features include:
A New Gesture navigation
Android has used a standard three-button navigation bar at the bottom of the screen for ages. In Pie, you can drop the standard Back, Home, and Recent buttons in favor of a new gesture-based navigation system.
Future devices will ship with this enabled, but you’ll still see the old buttons after updating. To try it, head to Settings > System > Gestures > Swipe up on Home button. Your navigation bar will change right away. This feature might take some time getting used to but it offers a smoother way of navigating your phone especially in comparison to the old button style.
Adaptive brightness and battery
Adaptive Battery is an expansion of the Doze feature introduced in Android 6 Marshmallow. Doze put apps that you weren’t using into a “deep sleep” to prevent them from wasting battery. Now, Adaptive Battery goes further by learning about the apps and services you use most often, then adjusting what you don’t use as much to use less battery. Android’s automatic brightness also gets an upgrade in Pie. Now, your phone will learn the brightness level you prefer in certain apps and environments and adjust it automatically.
Similar to App Actions, Slices let you jump right to certain actions in apps. For instance, Google says that if you search for Lyft on your phone, you’ll see a shortcut to hail a ride to work, complete with price and ETA.
Many of Android Pie’s security upgrades are under-the-hood and not particularly interesting. However, key to note is a new restriction feature. According to Google, this version of Android “restricts access to the mic, camera, and all SensorManager sensors from apps that are idle”. This means that even if you’ve granted permission for an app to access your microphone, it can’t do so unless you’re actively using it.
Screenshot made easier
The default Power + Volume Down button combination for shortcuts is a little awkward. Thus, in Android Pie, you can take a shortcut from the Power menu anytime. What’s more, you can also tap the Edit command in the notification that appears to make adjustments to your shot right away.
Although the update is yet to reach a majority of phones, the next generation of device is expected to harness the power of the improved operating system come 2019.