Google is experimenting in Android 12 with disabling the little-known notification half-swipe
Android 12's system settings are looking a little blue
Android 12 has an iPhone-style one-handed mode
Pixel Launcher gets a 4x5 grid size option on Android 12
The first Android 12 preview lands today with more changes than we expected
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Phones just keep getting bigger, and there's no sign things will change anytime soon. As such, one-handed modes are a common add-on from Samsung, Motorola, and other OEMs, but Google hasn't implemented its own version until now. Android 12 has a one-handed mode as rumored, and it's reportedly fully functional. However, it's not exposed in the settings in the first preview build.
XDA's Mishaal Rahman got the feature working in the dev preview. Google decided to take an Apple-y approach to this feature. Rather than shrinking down the entire screen like most Android OEMs, Google simply moves the screen down. This cuts off the bottom but allows easier access to buttons and switches that are near the top. Here's what it looks like.
Here's Android 12's one-handed mode - fully working. Sadly, it's like Apple's Reachability (vertically downsizing) rather than OHM on most OEM software (both horizontal and vertical downsizing). pic.twitter.com/IznRVHTgPu
— Mishaal Rahman (@MishaalRahman) February 18, 2021
So, that's an almost carbon copy of Apple's Reachability feature. This looks to be more geared toward helping you tap an inconveniently located control before bouncing right back to the fully expanded mode. One-handed modes that shrink the vertical and horizontal axis keep the entire screen visible at the expense of making it much smaller. We can't say for sure this feature will launch with Android 12, but it looks close to done as is.
For more about the Android 12 launch, check out our announcement post detailing what's new here. If you want to install the developer preview on your own device, find out how in our Android 12 download guide.