Google has released the first beta version of the new major version of the operating system that dominates the mobility industry. Android 11 Beta is here available for Pixel devices and its arrival to models from other manufacturers is expected in the coming weeks.
After four previous versions and after a certain delay caused by the COVID pandemic, Google opens the way to the new Android for the launch of a final version that is expected to arrive between September and October, focused on «people, notifications and privacy ».
In addition to the Android 11 Beta, Google has released the final APIs for the new version, along with a new development kit for creating applications and an updated version of the Android emulator to test them. Google has not cited relevant changes in this version except its greater stability over previous ones. The general news was known and we will remind you below.
Installation of Android 11 Beta
The beta version is only officially available for the following Pixel devices:
Pixel 2 XL
Pixel 3 XL
Pixel 3a XL
Pixel 4 XL
However, Google points out in the announcement that the Android 11 beta program will also support other devices “In the next weeks”. OPPO has already confirmed to XDA developers that it will release the version for Find X2 and Find X2 Pro later this month. Other original equipment manufacturers have yet to make an announcement, but based on previous Android beta programs, you can expect it to reach OnePlus, Nokia, Sony, Asus and Vivo smartphones.
If previous previous versions required flashing images, installing the beta version is much easier and it only requires three steps:
New in Android 11 Beta
“With Android 11 we maintain our focus on helping users take advantage of the latest innovations, while continuing to keep privacy and security a top priority,” Google’s vice president of engineering described in the system announcement last February.
To the news that we saw when we analyzed the first version, Google has been adding some others, although the main ones are maintained and it is unlikely that other important ones will be incorporated and the rest of the development will be aimed at correcting errors and optimizing the version. We will make a complete guide to the final version, but we leave you with the main news:
5G. Google is improving Android connectivity APIs to take advantage of the capabilities of new mobile networks. A new API will offer a bandwidth estimate and the user interface will display up to five different 5G icons depending on the connection.
Privacy. Users will be able to grant temporary access whenever an app wants to access the data and there will be a single permission for the most confidential data types, not only for the location, but also for the device’s microphone and camera.
New form factors and displays. Google will improve operational support for specific applications on folding devices, such as those that use split screen. It will also better support Pinhole hole screens such as the Galaxy S20 or the waterfall type of the Huawei P30 Pro. Applications will be able to use the entire screen surface, including the curved edges.
People and conversations. Android 11 includes changes that will help developers create “deeper” conversation experiences, Google promises. We see a dedicated conversations section in the notification box, where users can instantly find their ongoing conversations with favorite apps.
Another new function will be the «Bubbles», A way to keep conversations visible and accessible while doing other tasks. It will also be possible to insert assets directly into online notification responses, with the ability to copy / paste images, for example from Chrome via the Gboard clipboard.
Connectivity. In addition to 5G, there will be improvements in other aspects such as in the call detection service; greater manageability of wireless networks Wi-Fi and others such as Passpoint.
Images and cameras. New metadata tags to enable bokeh modes and a new API to silence vibration of ringtones, alarms or notifications while captures are active. Also animations in HEIF files; new image decoder for applications to decode and encode images such as JPEG, PNG, WebP from native code; or low latency modes HDMI or MediaCode, thinking about improving latency in real-time video transmission services such as Stadia.
Security. Google has extended Android defense strategies in more areas of the system and has added new functions and APIs for applications. We see the expansion of biometric support to a wide range of ways and devices; blockages in memory access; secure storage and sharing of data and identity credentials
Updates. Since Android 10, Google has increased investment in Google Play system updates (Mainline Project) to improve security, privacy and consistency across the ecosystem in collaboration with device manufacturers. In Android 11, they have added 12 new upgradeable modules, for a total of 22 available modules.
There are many more news that you can check on this Google page for Android development.