There's little worse than going to pick up your phone when you need it, only to find out that it's not charged. And even when we're making our best efforts to keep our batteries topped-up, all it takes is a loose cable, or someone accidentally unplugging a power strip, for those good intentions to go to waste. Thankfully, Android P is introducing a new audio confirmation to give you a little peace of mind that your phone is charging as intended. Read More
Android is designed to be gentle with your mobile data, but all bets are off when you get on WiFi. Your phone will likely save large downloads until the instant you reconnect to WiFi, but not all networks should be treated the same. Some WiFi hotspots are metered, and Android P makes it quicker and easier to tell the device when that is the case. Read More
The System UI Tuner has never really been a feature for the masses. It was a way of hiding experimental features from the majority of users — you had to long press the quick settings cog to activate it — while still letting the more inquisitive of us play around if we wished. In the early Oreo developer previews there were quite a few interesting things in there, but by DP3 it was reduced to just a couple of status bar and DND settings. In Android P, it appears to have been removed entirely. Read More
You probably get a lot of notifications on your phone. So many, in fact, it's easy to forget which apps were in that batch you just dismissed. Android P includes a handy menu that tracks recent notifications so you can disallow an app that's been pestering you in just a few taps. Read More
The name of the game in Android updates is usually adding features, but occasionally we lose something. That seems to be the case in the battery menu. In past versions, you could see per-app battery usage in the system settings. In Android P, that's all gone. You can, however, see app usage in the developer options. Read More
Adaptive brightness has long been a feature of Android smartphones. It uses an ambient light sensor, usually placed above the display, to measure the amount of light in the environment and change the brightness of the screen to best suit the conditions. It's often noticeable when changes occur, particularly right after you unlock your device, but now the quick settings brightness slider moves in tandem to further demonstrate this. Read More
A couple of days ago we learned that Google Lens was now rolling out to everyone inside Google Photos (and to more devices with Assistant), and one side-effect of that universal availability is it now works in ChromeOS. Aside from that, the promised identification of plants and animals is now active.
First, as discovered by Chrome Unboxed, you can download the Google Photos Android app on any Chromebook and use Lens inside it. It's a simple solution to not having a Pixelbook and one that should allow you to discover things inside your photos without having to reach for your phone first. Read More
It turns out that the screenshot button isn't the only new button in the power menu. In 'Lock screen preferences,' there's now a toggle called 'Show lockdown option' that brings a fourth button called 'Enter lockdown' to the menu. It's said to disable fingerprint unlocking and something called extended access, though we're not entirely sure what that is. Read More
We're not sure if this is a bug or a sign of things to come, but if you've purchased a movie on Google Play Movies in HD that has a 4K version available now and you open your purchases in the YouTube app on Android TV, you might spot a 4K sign below it. However, when you start playing it, the highest resolution available is 1080p.
Our tipster spotted this 4K label in his library, and Cody was able to confirm it as well. So far it's unclear whether this is a bug or it's a sign of Google upgrading HD Play Movies purchases to 4K for free when applicable - something that Apple did when it launched 4K content on iTunes, but that Google didn't. Read More
We already posted about battery saving mode no longer using flashy orange bars in Android P, but there's more to it than that. It also seems to be having an identity crisis with a total of three different names being used for it, and it's now adjustable to activate from anywhere between 5% and 70%. Read More