Google I/O is planned for this week. And, if history is any indicator, it's pretty likely we'll see the first Android 12 beta land sometime during I/O, potentially delivering the first Android 12 builds for third-party, non-Pixel phones. Given both what we've already seen and the rumored visual redesign, Android 12 looks like it will be one of the biggest updates in memory. So, are you going to try Android 12 before its released to stable later this year, or are you leaving that to the early adopters?
With I/O just around the corner, we're reaching a fever pitch on Google leaks. Earlier this week, we saw what could very well be the Pixel 6, and now, we've caught an eyeful of Android 12 in motion — and it looks like it could be Android's biggest visual overhaul in years.
A new, seemingly themed Google Assistant interface has been spotted in the wild. The images of it in action are incredibly garish, and though it probably isn't working as designed, the change is plausible given what we know of Android 12's upcoming theme support. The images also show off the anticipated "my actions" Assistant feature previously spotted in development.
Google Discover is one of the search giant's most popular products in recent memory. Even Samsung finally relented and put it on the homescreens of some of its wildly successful Galaxy smartphones — no mean real estate achievement, even for Google. As such, UI tests on Discover are almost as numerous as the dozens of content cards it displays, with constant tests, refreshes, and tweaks coming and going.
We are now a mere one release away from Android 12's first beta releases, but big new changes are still landing, like a wide rollout of the hidden "silky home" redesign, new animations, and a bubbly, rounded appearance to many UI elements. In fact, Android 12 is shaping up to be one of the biggest visual updates to Android in years, so let's take a look at all the new features — both in the recent Developer Preview 3 release and in Android 12 overall — that you can look forward to your phone getting with Android 12.
Android 12 Developer Preview 3 landed this week with many smaller design tweaks, but there's one thing you'll instantly notice when you start using the new release. Things have become considerably more bouncy. Whether it's the notification drawer or the overscroll animations, Google is working on making things feel much more physical and realistic.
Just about every major Android update has come with some changes to the notifications, sometimes in the form of major functional additions, or possibly just some minor layout tweaks. Google already made a change in the first Android 12 developer preview to put notification snoozing in a more easily accessed location, but the latest update to DP3 is adjusting the layout of stacked notifications so the total is more visible and makes better use of space.
Android 12 Developer Preview 3 brought a whole slew of new design elements hinting that we're in for even more extensive changes in future pre-release versions. But Google is also working on eliminating smaller inconsistencies that should make the latest OS even more pleasant to use. It's introducing properly themed toast messages for dark mode, as first spotted by 9to5Google.
The ability to customize software as you wish is among the most attractive traits of Android, and Google is looking to give users even more choice with Android 12's hidden extensive theming options. While these have yet to become available to everyone in the latest developer preview of Android 12, Google is adding yet another grid size option to the Pixel launcher that aims to make your home screen less overwhelming.
While Android 12 is already available in its third iteration (Developer Preview 3), there are still many hidden options and features under the hood that we might only get our hands on officially once the first beta launches next month. The so-called conversation widgets are among them. We first saw them as part of mockups ahead of the first Android 12 build, and avid coders managed to activate them in the previous developer previews. But now it looks like these widgets are becoming available to a few people using Developer Preview 3 without any hacks, as spotted by 9to5Google. They're among the first publicly available interface elements to automatically change the color based on your wallpaper.