Android 5.1 is still only available on a limited number of Android One phones, but a few interesting tweaks are already on display. One feature that seems tailor-made for Android One has to do with the dual-SIM capabilities. Android 5.1 includes the ability to set a different dialer theme color for each SIM so you'll know which one you're using to place calls.
OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei stated on Twitter early this morning that the company's One and only phone will be receiving its CyanogenMod 12S update (read: Lollipop) in "mid to late" March. Pei also implied that a similar timeline was in place for the company's in-house-ish Oxygen OS ROM.
Pei noted - in response to claims that current 12S nightlies seem stable - that "proprietary drivers, code, QA, [and] certifications" were responsible for the company missing its 90-day deadline to update the phone to Android 5.0.
Just about a week after the public release of the Xposed Framework for Lollipop devices, we are now privy to one of the best and most popular modules, GravityBox. And, like the framework, the developer of GravityBox is calling this version an alpha release. Still, those of you with Nexus devices are going to be very excited about this one.
For the unfamiliar, GravityBox is an Xposed module that offers a wide variety of tweaks for AOSP-ish ROMs.
We're back — and by we, I mean our best bro in the world, Ramit Suri — with another Android 5.1 interface change. This one is all about the screen pinning feature that was introduced with Android 5.0, which receives a small but useful facelift and an interesting change to its settings.
Screen pinning in Android 5.0
First of all, the above screenshots show how pinning works right now in Android 5.0. The settings screen only has one toggle to enable the feature with a detailed explanation of what it is and how to trigger it. When you pin an app, you get a dialogue explaining what you've done and how to unpin it later.
In case you haven't noticed, we love tiny details that make our everyday lives as Android users better. (And really, in case you didn't notice that, I'll show you the door — it's that X button next to the tab title up there in your browser.) Our friendly Android 5.1 tipster Ramit Suri loves them too, so much in fact that he noticed a teeny tiny detail on the lockscreen.
In Android 5.0, if you open the Quick Settings panel (henceforth referred to as QS) from the lockscreen, you would have to swipe the QS closed, then swipe again to unlock.
This might be the best new Android 5.1 feature yet. Lollipop brought with it so-called heads up notifications, where the entire notification appears at the top of your screen momentarily when it first arrives. The problem was that you had only three options:
Wait until it goes away
Tap on it to open up the app notifying you
Swipe it away, making the notification disappear permanently
With this feature addition to Android 5.1, you can swipe up to get it out of your way without losing it entirely.
Despite its appearance on Android One devices, we've had complete radio silence from Google about Android 5.1. Still, as long as it is in the wild, we're going to keep hearing about it. In this case, we have found out that the animation associated with toggling the auto-rotate feature has come back in 5.1 after disappearing in 5.0. Take a look.
This might not exactly change the way you use your Android phone or tablet, but it's nice.
Google has come out unscathed from a lawsuit in which consumers accused the company of anti-competitive practices. The basic allegation was that Google requires manufacturers to use a Google version of Android and that the way they place their own apps at the forefront has increased prices and prevented potential rivals from emerging. The main issue is the stipulation that Google's search be default in order to preload Play Services on Android devices.
Android 5.1 is in the wild on Android One devices, but it's still not totally official yet. Google has yet to announce it and there's no changelog available. As more people get their hands on 5.1, though, we're bound to learn some things about it. Like, for example, the quick settings changes and these neat little animations in the 5.1 clock app.
Back in 2014, one of the changes spotted in Google Search was support for settings toggles through voice commands. At the time, the feature wasn't complete — it merely gave you a shortcut to open the corresponding settings panel. That wasn't helpful at all, since you had to use your fingers to make the change, which would have been done much faster through the drop-down quick settings. In Lollipop, starting with 5.0, some of these toggles work as they are supposed to, through voice commands alone and without the need for some third-party hack like Commandr.