Google has finally announced the release of Android 12 beta at its Google I/O 2021 developer conference. This is coming after months of rumors and leaks of Android 12 developer previews. The new Android OS is getting some interesting stuffs.
It appears that Google is focusing more on design and privacy. From the beta announced in the Google I/O 2021 developer conference, most of the features shows easy personalization and more privacy controls.
Android 12 Beta Design changes
To emphasize its focus in users, Google is tagging the Android 12 as “Material You”. And from the features revealed in the beta version released, showed how true that is.
One of the very first things that’ll cathc your attention about the Android 12 is the brand new system-wide theming, which extends to most aspects of the platform, including the lock screen. That is not all, Android 12 can also “extract” color from your wallpaper and apply a matching color scheme.
Even Google’s first-party apps like the calculator, volume rocker, Gboard, and more are not excluded from this theming system. Also, you change the colours anytime to the one you like.
Google is also making everything bigger in the Android 12. The clock in the lock screen is bigger, the display notification is bigger and even the quick settings panel is bigger. You’ll now see just four buttons when the quick settings panel is condensed and when expanded it’ll turn to eight.
The menu banners are larger, volume and brightness are also much more pronounced, as is the toggle to expand notifications. Also, the user interface is pushed further down to make it easier to reach.
Some major improvements to the CPU usage and reduction in use of powerful cores makes animation more fluid. Android 12 has reduced the core system’s CPU usage by 22%, along with a 15% reduction in the use of the more powerful cores.
One of the two reasons why Harmony OS seems better than Android OS was the fact that application opens allot faster there. Well, Android 12 is stepping up the game with these new improvements to its CPU usage.
Unlocking your phones, swiping away notifications, and doing some other things appears to be smoother and faster in Android 12.
Other new features includes, new conversation widget, native scrolling screenshots, and access to Google Assistant via the power button. Google is also making it easier to access and use third-party app stores.
Android 12 beta Privacy Dashboard and Security
In our previous report, we reported that Google is working on introducing more privacy controls options for its users. Well, the Privacy Dashboard is one way Google is doing that.
In the Privacy Dashboard, users can see which app have access to which components of their phone and how often. Users can decide to revoke the access they feel uncomfortable with how often these apps access the components.
Android 12 will also include a small notification at the top right display of your phone. The purpose is to show you which of the device components are currently in use. From there, you easily check to know what’s in use and what app is using it.
And to make things even easier, you can access new system-wide toggles in the quick settings panel, allowing you to revoke access to the camera and mic from the entire system.
You can now also grant limited access to apps using your location. When an app asks for permission to use your location, you can grant it access to either precise or approximate location data. This is one good way you can restrict apps from getting access to location data they don’t need.
Google is also introducing an Android Private Compute Core, which helps secure certain on-device AI processing, like Live Captions, Now Playing, and Smart Reply. Google states that this allows the company to build new features into Android 12 that are “private by design,” especially since Private Compute Core is open source.
Android 12 beta release
Only few phones can actually make use of Android 12 beta right now. Top of the list is Google Pixel 5. But other good Android phones can also use the Android 12 beta. The availability will depend on the phone manufacturer.
The Android 12 beta is a more stable Android 12 than the one from developer preview. That is not to say it’s really deal. Once installed, you might still get some glitches here and there and to be honest it won’t be the software you’ll want to use in your everyday phone. In other words wait for the official Android 12 to be release.