Android is receiving a massive upgrade and Google developers are promising a sweet threat, nicknaming the new operating system release as Android 8.0 Oreo. But what’s in the middle of the OS named after the Nabisco cookie?
Plus, we’ve got a video review of its offerings.
“Android 8.0 brings a ton of great features such as picture-in-picture, autofill, integrated Instant Apps, Google Play Protect, faster boot time, and much more,” wrote Dave Burke, Vice President of Engineering at the Android Developers Blog.
“We’re pushing the sources to Android Open Source Project (AOSP) for everyone to access [Monday]. Pixel and Nexus 5X/6P builds have entered carrier testing and we expect to start rolling out in phases over the next several weeks, alongside Pixel C and Nexus Player. Android Beta users will receive the update to the final version [Monday] and images are available to download and flash manually. We’ve been working closely with our partners over the last many months, and by the end of this year, hardware makers like Essential, Huawei, HTC, Kyocera, Motorola, HMD Global Home of Nokia Phones, Samsung, Sharp and Sony are scheduled to be launching or upgrading new devices to Android 8.0 Oreo.”
Specifically, here’s what Oreo offers, according to Burke:
- Picture-in-picture lets users manage two tasks simultaneously on any size screen, and it’s easy for apps to support it.
- Notification dots extend the reach of notifications and offer a new way to surface activity in your apps. Dots work with zero effort for most apps — we even extract the color of the dot from your icon.
- Autofill framework simplifies how users set up a new device and synchronize their passwords. Apps using form data can optimize their apps for Autofill, and password manager apps can use the new APIs to make their services available to users in their favorite apps. Autofill will roll out fully over the next few weeks as part of an update to Google Play Services.
- Android Vitals, a project focusing on optimizing battery life, startup time, graphics rendering, and stability, while giving developers better visibility over the health of their apps:
- System optimizations: We worked across the system to help apps run faster and smoother — for example, in the runtime we added a new concurrent compacting garbage collection, code locality, and more.
- Background limits: We added new limits on background location and wi-fi scans and changes in the way apps run in the background. These boundaries prevent unintentional overuse of battery and memory and apply to all apps — make sure you understand and account for these in your apps.
- Complementary Android Vitals dashboards and IDE profilers: In the Play Console you can now see aggregate data about your app to help you pinpoint common issues – excessive crash rate, ANR rate, frozen frames, slow rendering, excessive wakeups, and more. You’ll also find new performance profilers in Android Studio 3.0, and new instrumentation in the platform.
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