Google changed the style of Android's notification shade and quick settings with the release of Android 5.0 Lollipop, and based on an early version of Android N we've seen, it's changing things up again. The look of Android N's notification shade is being altered, but it's more than cosmetic. Notifications will include more info, and quick settings are finally creeping in. The full quick settings UI is getting a new paginated style, and editing tiles will be easier.

Disclaimer: No matter the confidence level, there's always a chance product updates, features, and some or all details will be changed or cancelled altogether. As with all rumors, nothing is 100% until it's officially announced.

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Notifications

The Android N images in this post are mockups based on what we've seen—sorry, we can't post the actual screenshots. The first thing you'll notice is the notifications are full-width, and the separation between items is less distinct. Each item in the list also includes a line with the app that produced the notification. That information is available in the current notification UI, but you have to long-press to see it. Notifications also appear to be able to display some limited color text elements. App icons are smaller and less obvious as well. See below for a comparison of the old vs. new UI.

2016-02-29 18.04.10 Notifications 2

Left: Current, Right: Android N mockup

Up at the top is a bar of quick settings toggles, which will be a welcome change. Most OEMs have made a subset of quick settings available from the notification shade for a long time, but Google has kept them all in the dedicated quick settings panel. You'll still be able to pull down the full quick settings, but the most important toggles are easier to access in Android N.

Quick Settings

When you open the quick settings panel, you get a really cool sliding animation as the compressed bar of toggles move down to the full QS. Like the notifications, it's full-width now. The expandable WiFi and Bluetooth icons aren't visible in the version we've seen either. There's an edit button here, indicating that Google is bringing the UI tuner options into the main quick settings. Hopefully that means the feature will be a little more fleshed out.

There appears to be pagination of the quick settings now as well, so you can put less frequently used toggles on the next page. See below for a comparison between the old and new UI.

2016-02-29 18.58.42 QS

Left: Current, Right: Android N mockup

This is all based on an early version of Android N, so it's possible Google will change the way things work in the final build. You may also notice there's an app drawer icon in our mockup; we haven't seen anything to indicate that it has been removed from Android N yet. Again, this is still early. Google is expected to show off Android N at I/O in a few months. We're trying to get more details on Android N, so stay tuned.