Android Police

Articles Tagged:

series_android_q_feature_spotlights

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After a week with Android Q Beta 1, here are all the little changes we've noticed

There are quite a few new features (and some removed functionality) present in the first beta of Android Q — we've documented around 50 major changes already. There are also plenty of smaller tweaks that don't warrant separate coverage, so we're going over them here. Without further ado, here all of the smaller changes in Android Q Beta 1.

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Do Not Disturb schedules can be customized on Android Q

Do Not Disturb mode on Android has a long and troubled history. Since its inception on Android 5.0 Lollipop, Google substantially changed the behavior of the feature with every other update of its OS, taking away many options on Pie. Between that version and Q, apart from some improvements to the menu item structure in DND settings, the UX basically stays the same, with an improvement some of you power users might love: Schedules are now customizable.

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Android Q won't let apps turn Wi-Fi on and off, potentially crippling apps like Tasker

Android is known and loved for the extensive amount of automation and customization that can be achieved through its APIs. One of those is giving apps the ability to turn on and off Wi-Fi without user input. Tasker and IFTTT are major beneficiaries of this capability, but there is always malware that could abuse access to that system feature. To prevent that, Android Q will cut off apps' access to Wi-Fi settings.

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Google mimics iOS navigation gestures with hidden features in Android Q Pixel launcher

Android Ice Cream Sandwich was the first version of the operating system to introduce virtual navigation keys to phones, allowing manufacturers to dismiss physical ones. Although some decided to wait much longer to implement these, — I'm looking at you, Samsung — almost all Android devices nowadays have finally abandoned traditional buttons in favor of on-screen input. With the introduction of the iPhone X, Apple wanted to maximize screen space and therefore designed an ingenious swiping-based navigation system, that didn't require the need for buttons. With Pie, Google took its stab at it, but didn't quite make up its mind between using keys or gestures and instead went for a combination of both.

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Android Q adds hidden native "chat head" bubbles for all notifications

Back in the day, when Facebook first introduced chat heads for quickly replying to messages without leaving the app you were using, it was groundbreaking. Google picked up on those cues and added an option to answer messages right from notifications. The concept of chat heads even made into Google's phone app. Now, Google is testing a native implementation of those floating bubbles for all notifications on Android Q, as our colleagues over at 9to5Google found out.

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Android Q Beta has hidden option for remapping Pixel squeeze gesture to other assistant apps

The Pixel 2 and 2 XL included an 'Active Edge' feature, where squeezing the phone opened Google Assistant. This functionality carried over to the Pixel 3, but there has never been an official way to remap the squeeze action to something else — until now.

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Android Q has a new sound effect for ending calls

Android Q has plenty of major changes, but also many smaller tweaks that take a while to get noticed. Despite smartphones being used less and less for actual phone calls, we've received many tips that Android Q has a new sound effect for ending calls.

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Android Q steps up the fight against overlay-based malware

One of the bigger developer-facing changes we've spotted in Android Q is a mild deprecation of the SYSTEM_ALERT_WINDOW permission which controls overlays. (Think Facebook's chat heads or those Pokémon Go stats apps and you should get the idea.) Sideloaded apps on Android Q will see that permission revoked after 30 seconds, Play Store apps on Q will see it revoked on reboot, and the permission is being taken away entirely on the "Go" version of Android Q.

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Every new Android Q feature we have found so far [Continuously updated]

It's that time of the year again. Google has pushed out betas for its latest, greatest version of Android: Q. Your eagle-eyed Android Police editors have been combing through looking for new features, changes, improvements, and even setbacks. We've enumerated everything we've found here, together with a brief description of what's new. So, let's take a look at Android Q.

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Android Q's new feature flags modify the power menu, make audio output switching easier, and allow for other tweaks

We've already taken a look at one of the new feature flags in the Android Q Beta 1 — a buggy but potentially very useful native screen recording function — but there are several others worth mentioning too. Some of them bring about barely noticeable changes, but a few are actually pretty interesting.

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