Google has introduced a new design specification for app icons. App developers will be able to submit new icons to the Google Play Console starting in early April. After May 1, developers will no longer be able to submit icons that do not meet the new specifications. By June 24, all icons, new and old, will need to meet this new specification, the team explained.

Some requirements of the new specification are that transparent backgrounds are not allowed and Google Play will apply rounded corners and drop shadows to icons.

Google reveals restrictions on how Android Q apps access location and network information
Last week, Google revealed that it will provide new capabilities that will give users more control over their location data. It will also be placing further restrictions on how apps can access location and network information.

Changes that affect all Android Q apps are that access to camera information requires permission and apps can no longer enable or disable WI-Fi. Apps that target Android Q will need additional location permissions in order to use methods within telephone, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth APIs. Manual configuration of the list of Wi-Fi networks is also now restricted to system apps.

SUSE is now an independent company
SUSE has officially been split off from Micro Focus after being acquired by EQT. SUSE is now an independent company, which will allow it to better meet the needs of its customers and partners.

It will expand its executive team with new leaderships roles, such as a new chief financial officer and chief operations officer.

SAS to invest $1 billion in AI over the next three years
Analytics provider SAS has announced that it is investing $1 billion in AI over the course of the next three years. According to the company, this investment will be spread throughout areas such as software innovation, education, expert services and more. The company believe that education and expert services will provide business leaders and data scientists with the skills and technology needed to transform their organizations.

“At SAS, we remain dedicated to our customers and their success, and this investment is another example of that commitment,” said Jim Goodnight, CEO of SAS. “With our innovative capabilities in AI, SAS helps businesses deter damaging fraud, fight deadly disease, better manage risk, provide exemplary service to customers and citizens, and much more.”

Khronos Group releases the OpenXR 0.90 specification
The Khronos Group has announced the release of the OpenXR 0.90 specification, which is a “unifying, royalty-free, open standard that provides high-performance access to augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR)— collectively known as XR—platforms and devices.”

“OpenXR seeks to simplify AR/VR software development, enabling applications to reach a wider array of hardware platforms without having to port or re-write their code and subsequently allowing platform vendors supporting OpenXR access to more applications,” said Brent Insko, lead VR architect at Intel and OpenXR working group chair. “The OpenXR provisional specification—together with the runtimes publicly available at launch and coming in the next few weeks—will enable hands-on, cross-platform testing by application and engine developers. The working group welcomes developer feedback to ensure an OpenXR 1.0 specification that truly meets the needs of the XR industry.”