Google today released the first Android 12 Developer Preview for those who own Pixel devices.
The new Developer Preview update can be installed on Pixel 3 and newer devices, although we really wouldn’t suggest that you do that – especially in this initial release form.
The update itself, when complete, is set to focus on improvements to notifications as well as a few visual changes that will make Android nicer to look at. Some might suggest this update makes Android look more like iOS, but we’re not sure we’d agree with that.
As noted by Android Central this update will also improve the way people interact with apps, too.
Android 12 is also introducing better ways to interact with apps. This includes a unified API that lets developers accept various types of rich content into their apps, like photos and videos, from sources like keyboards, clipboards, or drag-and-drop. There’s support for enhanced spatial audio and haptic-coupled audio feedback that can use the device’s vibration motor to match what’s playing. For instance, your device vibrations can match music or ringtones and even simulate different types of experiences based on gameplay.
Google is also putting more work into optimizing Android for different screen sizes including tablets and foldable phones. The Google TV interface is also seeing some love in that regard, too.
Android 12 introduces support for images that use the AV1 Image File Format (AVIF). AVIF is a container format for images and sequences of images encoded using AV1. It takes advantage of the intra-frame encoded content from video compression. This dramatically improves image quality for the same file size when compared to older image formats, such as JPEG. For an in depth look at the advantages of this format, see Jake Archibald’s blog post.
(Image in JPEG format)
(Image in AVIF format)
However, it isn’t likely you’ll see much of this in the first Developer Preview. Instead, the initial release tends to set the groundwork for these improvements to come in later releases.
If you wish to give this preview a go, head over to the download page here to get started. Instruction on how to install it on your device can be found here.
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