Google pushes Android N Developer Preview, hints at ‘N’ meaning

Google I/O is happening on May 18-20, but forget about the Google I/O for now, as the developer preview of the next version of Android is launching right now. The Android N Preview can be installed on supported devices or tested through the Android Emulator.

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Android N will introduce notifications that customers can reply to inside the notification itself. Once users get their hands on Android N, pulling down on the notification shade will reveal a slim bar of mini toggles as opposed to just the time, date, and battery icon information. Since we’ve discovered from the leaks that the Android N is going to be featuring a dual-screen for your multitasking purposes, we aren’t sure if people are going to be excited over this. To install the Android N Preview through over-the-air updates similar to how regular updates are pushed out, users can sign up in the Android Beta Program. As such, Google has “more time to incorporate developer feedback”. So fast actually, that most Galaxy S6 or Note 5 users in the US don’t even have Android 6.0 Marshmallow yet, while Nexus devices can already try the new Android N release starting today. “With Android’s Jack compiler, you can now use many popular Java 8 language features, including lambdas and more, on Android versions as far back as Gingerbread”. In addition, activities can also go into picture-in-picture mode on devices like TVs, and is a great feature for apps that play video; be sure to set android:supportsPictureInPicture to true to take advantage of this.

Android N factory images are available to download on the Nexus 6, Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X, Nexus 9 and Pixel C Tablet. Android N or version 7.0 will release in at least five beta versions prior to the launch of the OS’ final cut, which the report said will touch down anytime starting July. Once notified by Google, the OEMs have the discretion to select which of their phones deserve the upgrade more than others. Non-developers should keep in mind, though, that Preview 1 is an alpha and has various stability and performance issues…

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There are other new features in Android N, including a redesigned Settings menu and a tweaked app-switching interface, but those are the major ones.

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