Google has officially announced Android M at its opening I/O 2015 keynote, and we have all the features, details, release date right here.
Google is introducing a comprehensive yet more convenient app permissions function. Now instead of an app asking for all kinds of permissions at installation point, you will be asked when the app needs to access a certain feature, say your contacts or photos. iOS anyone?
There are a total of 8 permission sets now, and include location, camera,microphone, contacts, phone, SMS, calendar, and sensor. You can even check out which features an app is currently accessing, or you can simply checkup all apps against a single type of permission as well.
Chrome Custom Tabs
App developers can now point user to an in-app browser like experience, instead of moving them out of it and into the browser’s window thanks to some sticky Chrome tabs. Google is calling the feature “Chrome Custom Tabs” and it pretty much allows developers to throw in a Chrome tab into their apps.
These tabs will also support the usual Chrome features such as saved passwords, signing in, autofill for forms, and a multi-process security layer.
Currently Android offers users the choice to choose which app you want to use to handle a function sent out by another app. With Android M, apps will be able to verify themselves as the most effective ones for certain tasks, of course users will be able to change that manually if they want.
Android Pay And Fingerprint Support
An answer to Apple Pay, “Android Pay is an open platform” as put by Google, and uses both NFC and Host Card Emulation to make the payments. The word is out that AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile will be pre-installing the feature on new devices. Apart from Android Pay, Google has now baked fingerprint support right into Android, so third-parties don’t have to mess around much with the software to get the feature up to speed from now on.
The implementation of both Android Pay and native support for Fingerprint readers in Android M is almost exactly similar to Apple Pay and Touch ID.
USB Type-C Support
This new USB Type-C is all the rage right now, and it’s not surprising that Google intends to introduce USB-C on newer Android devices. USB Type-C support means faster data transfers and faster charging. The new 12-inch Retina MacBook was the first commercial device to adopt this standard, so don’t be surprised if it’s coming to Android too.
New Power Supply Feature
If you have just too much of battery on your hands, Android M will allow users to charge another device connected to the primary device. Pop in the connector and the OS will ask you what you need done.
New Battery Saving Feature: Dozed
Android is trying to tackle the longstanding battery life issue, and with Android M a new feature is being rolled out which will save battery if your phone or tablet is sitting idle – read: motionless. Dozed, will detect motion in your device and will manage the battery based on that. If your device is idle, it will kill apps to save battery. Google claims that a Nexus 9 running with Dozed enabled can last twice as long as it does right now on Android Lollipop.
Improved Volume Controls
The volume adjustment menu now offers individual controls so you can tweak each kind of sound levels, alarm, music, and notifications.
Now On Tap
Tap and hold the home button in Android M, and Google will try and assist you with whatever activity you’re on at that particular moment.
Other Improvements And Bug Fixes
Obviously there are a plethora of smaller features some which are an improvement to existing ones as well with the software giant saying that there are over 100 new platform improvements. We will be able to look at it in more detail after we’ve gone through the developer preview.
Android M Release Date
Android M is available as developer preview today for select Nexus devices. Google expects to ship final version of Android M by Q3 2015.
Download Android M Developer Preview
You can download the developer preview build right now for Nexus 5, 6, 9 and Nexus Player from here: Download Android M Developer Preview For Nexus 5, 6, 9, Nexus Player [Direct Links]