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Android P feature spotlight: Volume buttons change media volume by default instead of the ringer

Android's separate volumes for media, calls, and alarms can be great in some situations and terrible in others. I'm sure many of you have tried to preemptively turn down the volume as a YouTube video is loading, only to set your phone to vibrate and have the video play at full volume anyways. Nine years after Android was first released, this problem has finally been solved.

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Android P feature spotlight: Here are some sweet new transition animations

I'm a sucker for animations. Objectively speaking, they don't add any functionality (some might even say that incessant animations make tasks slower and end up actually reducing productivity), but I still can't get enough of them. Fortunately for me and for any other animation fans out there, Android P has a couple of new transition animations that look pretty dope.

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Android P feature spotlight: Do not disturb settings have been simplified down to a single mode

Android's "Do not disturb" setting has an incredible degree of flexibility, but as of the recent Developer Preview, it looks like it may be simplified a bit going forward. In our hands-on time today with Android P, we have discovered that the Do not disturb setting, and its various modes, has been reduced to a single toggle accessible only via quick settings. Gone are the old "Total silence," "Alarms only," and "Priority only" modes. 

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Android P feature spotlight: Quick setting toggles are no longer expandable

By now, most of you are probably used to expanding your Wi-Fi and Bluetooth quick settings by tapping the text underneath the icon. From there, you can easily select which Wi-Fi network or Bluetooth device you'd like to connect to. Well too bad, because Google is taking that ability away from us in Android P.

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Android P feature spotlight: Unlock pattern now fades out as you swipe

Android has supported pattern unlock since time immemorial, but the look of the pattern has changed over time. It started off huge and garish, but now it's more minimalist. The overall vibe hasn't changed in Android P, but there is one notable alteration to pattern unlock: the path fades away as you swipe.

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Android P feature spotlight: Battery Saver no longer turns the navigation and status bars orange

We've got some big news: Battery Saver mode no longer forces you to stare at those giant orange bars on the top and bottom of your screen. These orange bars were first introduced about 3.5 years ago in Android 5.0 Lollipop, likely to let people know that the Battery Saver was on, but Google has decided to remove them for some reason. At least your screen won't hurt your eyes when you're trying to save some battery anymore, right?

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[Update: Now available for Pixel C] Google posts system images and OTA files for March 2018 patches

Another month is just starting, and that means it's time for the latest round of Pixel and Nexus patches to roll out. Google has posted both the system images and the OTA files, so you can get the latest version on your device without waiting for the update. You might actually want to go out of your way this time as there are some functional updates for Pixel devices.

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[Update: Only on Pixel 2] Android P feature spotlight: Screenshot editing is now native with 'Markup'

Google recently started rolling out a screenshot editing popup for the Google app beta that also made its way to other apps for some. But it looks like that won't be necessary for devices running Android P, as a native screenshot editing tool, dubbed 'Markup,' has been implemented. It's not bad.

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Android P feature spotlight: There's a new cell selection animation in DP1

It's always fun to poke around a developer preview in search of what might have changed in Android. Some things are more obvious, like moving the volume slider around or making Quick Settings vertically scrollable, while others are a little more subtle. This one falls squarely in the latter category.

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Android P feature spotlight: The power menu now has a screenshot button

The power menu now has a new button: the appropriately-named 'Screenshot.' Custom ROMs have had an option for it for years, and Google has finally added it to its own builds. The old power + volume button combo still works, but this might come in handy when the buttons are inconvenient to press for whatever reason.

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