The Android team is revealing its plans for the next version of its operating system. The first developer preview of Android 11 is now out and features new capabilities for foldable phones, 5G, call-screening, and machine learning.
Developers can download the system image for Pixel 2, 3, 3a or 4 devices.
“Android has led the way towards the future of mobile, with new technologies like 5G to foldable displays to machine learning built into the core. A hallmark of our approach is a strong developer community that provides early and thoughtful feedback, helping us deliver a robust platform for apps and games that delight billions of users around the world,” Dave Burke, vice president of engineering at Google, wrote in a post.
For 5G experiences, Android 11 will feature a dynamic meteredness API to check whether connection is unmetered, and a bandwidth estimator API to check the downstream/upstream bandwidth.
For new screen types, the team is adding and updating APIs for apps to use pinhole screens or waterfall screens.
The release also focuses on security and privacy with one-time permission, scoped storage, expanded biometrics support, platform hardening, secure storage and sharing of data, and identity credentials.
Other features include a dedicated conversations section, bubbles for multi-tasking on phones, insert images into notification repliceand a neural networks API 1.3.
In order to make updates faster, the team will also be working on minimizing the impact of behavior changes and simplify testing and debugging.
“Developers also told us that preparing for early app compatibility was a challenge without a clear date for final changes. So in Android 11 we’re adding a new release milestone called “Platform Stability”, which we expect to reach in early June. This milestone includes not only final SDK/NDK APIs, but also final internal APIs and system behaviors that may affect apps,” Burke wrote.