Here’s What the New Android OS Will Do for You

June 8, 2016

It will begin with the letter “N” and will likely be named after some sort of dessert. That’s what we know about the new Android operating system that’s being developed. The whole dessert theme is beginning to make more sense because operating systems seem more like afterthoughts for Googlers busy developing the sexier artificial intelligences and virtual realities. But Android has a huge impact on just about everyone, and here’s the new stuff we’re going to see in the new OS. USA Today reports of these advancements:

Split screen mode:

Google is not on the vanguard with this. You’ll be able to run two apps at once, either stacked one above the other or side by side.

Simpler multitasking:

Switching from one app to another should also get simpler in N, where a tap of the recent-apps button will no longer show a seemingly infinite list of every app you’ve opened in recent history. Instead, Android N will automatically sweep away apps you haven’t used in a while – Google’s research showed that most people only flipped through seven apps in this list – and let you swipe the whole thing clean. To jump back to the last app you had open, just tap the recent-apps button twice.

More interactive notifications:

Android N will take an existing option to respond to an app’s notification after it appears atop the screen by letting you carry on entire conversations within the notification view. Where a messaging app might now only show a preview of a message, in N it will add a “Reply” button.

Longer battery life:

The current Android Marshmallow release has a great feature called Doze that suspends most app activity when the phone isn’t moving. N will expand this function to the times when the phone may be moving but its screen is off — as in, the large amount of time a phone is not being used because it’s in a pocket or purse.

More efficient apps:

Reworked code should cut down on the time apps need to install and should also trim their storage needs. And a new Data Saver option will let you constrain an app’s appetite for wireless data.

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