Everything You Need To Know About Android L

If you guys kept yourself updated with Google’s I/O conference, I am sure you guys know that Google is bringing out a major upgrade in their OS. This OS will give your phone a complete makeover.

l-theme

Android L is here, and it has brought a huge number of new changes, as Sundar Pichai, head of Android, proclaims it to be one of the biggest upgrades to Android yet.

Release Date:

Excited? We bet you are! We can’t wait for it to be released either. What you say? The release date? Oh yes, let’s tell you about the release date

Google has already released the developer preview of the Android L on June 26. But the consumer version won’t be released until sometime this fall.

If you are a Nexus 5 or Nexus 7 user and also a developer, you can easily get the developer preview.  But others will have to wait until individual carriers and handset providers issue an update for their selected smartphones. Till then, you can read about it and get even more excited!

Key Features:

As we patiently wait for this huge update to be available for the selected handsets, let us look at some of its key features and find out what Android L has to offer!

1. Design:

Well, Android L is going to give your phone a complete makeover. According to Google, Android L is going to change the way it looks. It is flat but is going to make every animation, every shadow, every ripple looks real, hence it’s going to be pretty loaded based on that fact.

material design

The design is in fact called Material Design, and it’s based on what Google called a “unifying theory of a rationalized space and a system of motion.” Specifically, Material Design will include (at least for mobile devices) new animations, themes, 3D views with real-time shadows, activity transitions, etc.

Duarte explained that elements, transitions, and animations should appear just like in real life: “Our material is grounded in tactile reality, inspired by our study of paper and ink, yet open to imagination and magic,” he said, noting again that the new effects will react to your touch.

The touch latency has also been improved in Android L and the Search results are going to be smoothly animated as well, for example, it will be fast and fluid at 60fps. And the Material Design look in Android L will also be present in the Chrome app on your mobile device.

2. Better Notifications:

Yes, Notifications get a complete makeover as well, hence improving the user experience.

With Android L, You will be able to see your notifications on your lock screen. If you want to launch apps, you will have to double tap them, or you could just swipe them away. To see the full list of notifications, all you got to do is swipe down.

lock screen

According to Dave Burk, the Director of Engineering at Google for Android, people mostly take their phone out of their pocket to check notifications: “So we wanted to streamline the process, everything from the phone buzzing to you acting on that notification,” he explained.

Nope, that’s not it! This awesome OS will analyse your habits and behaviour so that you can be presented with the most relevant and useful notifications first.

Android L is introducing a new type of notification called Heads Up. It actually provides pop-up notifications at the top of your display, whenever you’re inside of an app. You can accept them or dismiss them. They’re meant to show what you’ve received – without taking up your whole display or interrupting – Awesome, isn’t it?!

3. Authentication:

Next comes Authentication. Authentication has always been a big part of android OS since it keeps your android device safe from any unwanted access.

Authentication

“You waste many minutes a day cumulatively on that fiddly task of entering a pin,” Burk said. “So we figured there’s gotta be a better way. In L, we’re introducing a new concept we’re calling ‘personal unlocking‘.”

Now, what is this Personal unlocking? Well, with this personal unlocking, you phone is enabled to determine if it’s in a trusted environment. It can detect whether the person swiping the lock screen is the owner of the device, or not. The feature uses data like location, nearby Bluetooth devices, or unique voice prints to authenticate and then unlocks your device again.

Therefore, you can easily unlock an Android L device without ever having to enter a PIN code or pattern lock if you desire. And if you cannot be authenticated on a device running Android L, it will present you with a PIN lock.

4. Performance Improvement:

ART

Android L is going to feature ART, a new run time compiler that will process applications more efficiently and effectively.

Google claims that by switching to ART, Android devices will gain twice the performance over any Android device that’s running the older Dalvik run time compiler. ART will further support ARM, x86, MIPS, and 64-bit instructions as standard, meaning it’s cross-platform.

Don’t understand it? Well, no worries. All you need to know is that your applications will lag less (hopefully not at all), and your device will be more efficient. Specifically, ART in Android L could save you several MBs of memory.

5. Graphics Boost:

AEP

Android L is going to feature an Android Extension Pack. High-end phones and tablets shipping in autumn will support this new graphics capability. The Android Extension Pack is going to improve how graphics look and run. For example, you will notice in games – more realistic environments, characters and vastly improved lighting.

“Quite literally, this is PC-gaming graphics in your pocket,” Burk explained, after a video game demonstration of a title running Epic Game’s Unreal Engine 4.

6. Battery Optimization:

With major CPU and GPU changes being shipped with Android L, Google had to reevaluate battery life to make sure it keeps up with performance.

battery

Android L is going to feature Project Volta. It optimizes battery life. It’s kind of like the Project Butter, an effort for UI smoothness that Google unveiled two years ago, only newer and better.

“The goal of Project Volta is to optimize how the expansive subsystems of the device are used and to improve overall battery life,” Burk explained.

Project Volta will include a tool called Battery Historian. It offers a thorough breakdown of  what is eating your device’s battery. If you’re having battery life problems, you could use Battery Historian to identify and even stop whatever is draining your battery, no matter if it’s software or hardware. Fab., right?

There’s also a Battery Saver mode that allows you to clock-down the CPUs, turn down refresh rates, and even shut off background data to conserve battery. You can trigger this mode manually or set it to switch on when your battery level is low. Battery Saver mode could save a Nexus 5 up to 90 minutes of use. Awesome, right?

7. Data Separation:

data

With Android L, it will be easier for businesses or companies to give Android devices to their employees. The feature enables data separation, so both corporate and personal applications can run securely together on one device, without sharing data. And that’s the key.

The feature also lets companies control Android devices remotely, so your IT department at work can deploy apps in bulk and manage data. Google said you could thank Samsung for these new capabilities. It actually contributed a lot of technology to make the feature possible.

8. What’s More:

Google also quickly mentioned that Android L will feature a new keyboard UI, new quick settings, a Do Not Disturb mode, better multitasking, and “much more”. But the company didn’t provide a demonstration of these changes.

Exciting or what?! Well people, what do you think of this impatiently awaited, “Google’s next big thing”?! We are totally excited! Share your views with us in comments section below. You can also connect with us on FacebookTwitter and Google+ 24/7.