June 2, 2015
Are you ready for Android M?
This year’s I/O conference focused mainly on the changes Google would roll out in the next version of Android. For now, it is simply being referred to as Android M; but the successor to Android Lollipop incorporates some major and some minor yet important changes over its predecessor. All these changes are expected to make the Android M a more fluid and functional software update. So what were some of the major announcements made at the Google I/O 2015? Well, here’s a quick rerun of what went down.
- We still don’t know what it’s called. Macadamia Nut Cookie, Milkshake, Muffin or Meringue; it could be anything. Whatever it is, we know it’ll begin with an M and would be a sweet treat.
- App permissions would be less scary. You know that long list of phone functions that an app requests access to when you want to install it? The one that sometimes looks so intimidating that it drives you away from the app itself? Well… no more (or at least less) of those. Android M will request for access to user device segment on an individual level. This means that it will request for access to a phone function, only when the app develop needs to access it. Another development is the fact that users would now be able to see which phone function a certain app is accessing at a given time.
- In case you missed Chrome for in-app browsing… with Android M, Google is bringing users Chrome Custom Tabs, instead of the basic stripped-down browser that opens when you access a website from, let’s say, Facebook. Chrome Custom Tabs would not only ensure a consistent browsing experience for Chrome loyalists, but would also load pages faster, with its ability to preload certain elements of a website.
- No more sweating for switching between apps. In retrospect, switching between apps would require intermediary steps. For instance, if you were to access a picture on Instagram from Twitter, you would have to go through the step of choosing whether you’d like to view the picture in Chrome, the stock browser or Instagram. With Android M, the movement between apps is seamless, in a way that if you have Instagram installed, the picture would automatically open in Instagram.
- Battery life: Don’t lose when you snooze. With swanky new smartphones, comes their shiny new touchscreens. The glamorous battery drainers that don’t spare the life of the device even when in sleep mode. Not anymore, devices on the Android M, will apparently switch “app freshness for battery life”. Google is introducing a new feature called Doze that uses motion detection sensors to identify long periods of device inactivity. During such lull periods, Doze would push the device into a deeper mode of sleep, thereby conserving its battery.
- Unlimited shelfies for your selfies. Google understands that visual memories in the form of pictures and videos are a major aspect of a user’s relationship with a device. It also understands that there are only so many pictures and videos your device can contain. Enter Google Photos, a free online storage for pictures and videos. Best part, there is no limit. Photos would also allow users to organize their media according to customizable titles based on locations or people. Apparently, Google is employing a super intelligent means of auto-tagging in order to accomplish the feat.
- Your door, thermostat and bulb will be smart. It was only a matter of time before Google incorporated a way for you to control home appliances with its smartphones. The Internet of Things is no longer just a concept. With Project Brillo, Google will essentially convert its smartphones and tablets into universal remote controls. And we are not complaining.
- GoogleNow adds to the wow-factor. GoogleNow is Google’s latest version of its virtual assistant. What is different about GoogleNow is that it incorporates context in order to provide a rather robust experience, offering more tailored recommendations to users.
Google has a lot of exciting new things lined up for Android users in the near future. Currently being offered on all major platforms, including Android, SmartIO is excited about what’s in store for the future. Since SmartIO automatically rolls out updates, our users need not worry about adjusting to changes that come with the upcoming software update. Regardless of whether you’re currently an Android user or not, if you wish to switch to a device that offers Android M (whenever it is released), SmartIO will help you make the switch. Our cross-platform content transfer application will help you transfer up to 12 different content types, in a way that is wireless, seamless and stress-free.