Your friends competence still be watchful in line to buy a new iPhone 6 or 6 Plus, though while they’re out there braving a indeterminate weather, you’re inside your friendly residence customizing a heck out of your Android device. That’s a beauty of being an Android user: we can tweak a interface, change adult a icons on particular apps, and noise widgets wherever we see fit. Can your iPhone-loving crony do that? 

Apple’s new iOS 8 competence have blatantly appropriated some of Android’s marquee features—like a Notifications row and support for third-party keyboards—but it still misses some of what Android users adore about a mobile handling system. Your Apple-using friends competence try to massage your nose in their glossy new chronicle of iOS on their glossy new iPhone, so here are 10 facilities that Android has that we can repartee with. (And of course, don’t forget to remind them that Android L is entrance soon, and that will have even some-more facilities to exaggerate about.) 

Better app management

In Android’s Settings menu, underneath Application manager, we can force quit and uninstall apps as we see fit. You can also pure a cache for apps that are behaving up, or perspective how most storage space any app takes up. And if your conduit bundles bloatware on your device, we can invalidate it in batch Android, or censor it wholly on Samsung and LG’s user interfaces. Best of all, we can select your possess app defaults, so if we unequivocally don’t wish to use Google Chrome as your browser (for example), we can select something else from a Google Play Store.

android appinfo2

You can force stop, uninstall, or invalidate an app, and pure a information or cache if it’s bumming out your OS, man.

iOS 8 merely allows we to force-quit an focus by swiping adult on a app in a App Switcher. You can undo an app by long-pressing it on a interface or by iTunes. But we don’t have most control over either or not we wish to use Safari as your default browser, for example, and not many applications offer pure options for tying how most room a information takes up.

Widgets on Home and Lock screens

It’s smashing that Apple finally authorised widgets inside iOS’s notifications panel, though it’s too little, too late. Android users have been means to noise widgets on both a Home shade and a Lock shade for years now.

android widgets

Widgets competence take adult a screen, though it’s adult to we to select that offer profitable information.

Most widgets come bundled with an focus when we download it from a Google Play Store. The FitBit widget, for instance, helps we lane your stairs and how many calories you’ve burnt via a day, while a Google Keep widget lets we fast coop records and voice reminders to yourself with usually a daub of a button. There are even customizable widgets available, like Elixir 2 Widgets, that lets we emanate tradition widgets for your Home screen.

Total interface customization

iOS 8 competence have a few new neat new interface perks, though a altogether interface of Apple’s mobile handling complement hasn’t developed most over a years. It’s still a same aged grid of icons, one built after a other. You can’t censor apps, and we still have to cycle by several screens to find a app we wish to use. You can’t even change a icons or unequivocally customize how things appear, save for changing a wallpaper.

android interface

On Android, we can use apps like Beautiful Icon Styler to character particular app icons. Here, I’m regulating two opposite idol packs.

Android allows we to customize a interface as we see fit. You can pierce icons around, organisation them however we like, anathema apps to a Application Drawer so that they’re there if we need them though aren’t holding adult Home shade space, and toss in a few widgets to change it adult a bit. You can even use apps like Beautiful Icon Styler to fast change a icons on your Home screen.

And, if we really wish an interface makeover, we can download one of a many opposite launcher apps in a Google Play Store to tweak each small indentation and corner of a Android interface. 

Transit directions in Maps

android transit

Don’t feel like holding a bus? Take a subway! Don’t feel like holding a subway? Take an Uber! Google Maps offers many options.

Apple competence have bound a Maps app given a disastrous launch in iOS 6, though when we ask it for directions it still won’t tell we how to get there by bus. Google Maps offers options for opposite forms of transit, too, so if we confirm to take a boat, bus, or sight to get to where you’re going, you’re covered. And while some competence not be too crazy about a fact that there’s Uber formation in Google Maps, during slightest we have a choice to call for a float when you’re in a bind.

Easy split-screen multitasking

While split-screen multitasking isn’t a underline that comes with batch Android, manufacturers like LG and Samsung have finished it a customary partial of their interfaces. Samsung calls it Multi Window Mode, and LG calls it Dual Window, though both do accurately a same thing: concede we to use twin apps simultaneously, side-by-side. It’s something that each large-screened phone or inscription should have to make it easier to flip between apps. 

LG G3 twin window

LG’s Dual Window lets we run twin apps side by side with ease.

At present, iOS 8 does not have a underline for split-screen multitasking. There’s scuttle-butt that Android L will have it during launch, though zero has been confirmed. Still, it’s a good instance of how Android’s honesty has enabled a growth of these forms of features, and a some-more users commotion for it a some-more it seems to turn a customary partial of a interface.

Individual user profiles for tablets

There’s zero worse than carrying to share your device with a kid. They’re already removing their grubby, gummy fingers all over your phone or tablet, and now we have to accommodate them with apps to keep them entertained? Ugh.

androidusers primaryMichael Homnick

You competence have to share your tablet, though we don’t have to share your apps, or your data. 

That’s because Android’s profiles were a acquire remit for all a unavoidable tool sharing. It radically allows we to emanate opposite partitions in a handling complement with a possess tradition apps and settings. Currently, this underline is singular usually to Android tablets using Jelly Bean and above, though there’s some evidence that it competence come to smartphones too in Android L. 

NFC accessible for some-more than tap-to-pay

It’s flattering cold that iOS users can use a NFC chip in their new iPhones to compensate for stuff, solely that Apple Pay won’t be accessible for another month. Android users already have this capability—and a ability to do some-more than usually compensate for stuff.

nfc lead image

Paste NFC chips anywhere in your residence to make your phone do cold things. 

Apple won’t open adult a NFC capabilities to other developers in iOS 8. So, while we can use your Android phone to do things like travel into a room and suitable a phone on an NFC tab to rivet Do Not Disturb mode, your iPhone-using crony can usually use his smartphone to compensate for things like nachos during a ball game. Been there, finished that.

Keep music, movies, and some-more on a MicroSD card

Apple requires as most as 5.8GB of giveaway space before it will let we ascent your iPhone to iOS 8, that has caused a lot of users to go by deletion anxiety. It wouldn’t be such an emanate if iOS users could store their videos, images, and song on a MicroSD card.

Android users can. If we wish adult to 128GB some-more room to store photos, music, and videos, all we have to do is buy a MicroSD label and afterwards cocktail it into a phone or tablet. And while it’s loyal that Android KitKat nixed some of a absolute abilities of expandable storage, we can during slightest still pierce over those unconnected files as we see fit. Oh, and we can use a USB peep drive, too. 

More phone confidence options

android screenlock

Choose a shade lock—any shade lock! 

The iPhone lets we swipe, indicate a fingerprint, or enter in a four-number PIN series to clear your device. Android offers some-more choice: we can enter in a PIN series that’s 4 or some-more numbers, snippet a settlement opposite a grid of dots, have Android indicate your face, or use a super prolonged cue to clear a phone. Samsung’s Galaxy S5 also lets we use a fingerprint scanner, if we so wish, while a LG G3 has a neat Knock Code. Also, when we encrypt your Android device, a OS requires that we set adult a PIN series or settlement to keep your phone sealed up. It’s one good approach to get in a robe of cue safeguarding your phone, and if all else fails and we still remove your device we can lane it down with a web-based Android Device Manager.

Installing apps from a web—or anywhere

This is simply one of a best things about Android. If we wish to implement an app, we can form in “play.google.com” from any web browser, record in with your Google account, and strike Install to download an app to any of your related Android devices. The iTunes App Store doesn’t unequivocally exist on a web for iOS devices; if we click to implement an app, it opens adult iTunes or a mobile App Store app on a device.

Also cool: if we wish to try out a new app that’s in beta, or simply can’t wait for a Google Play Store to pull out an update, all we have to do is download a suitable APK from a devoted source and afterwards sideload it on to your device. You don’t need to be a hacker to do this, and it’s easy-to-do hacks like this that make Android that most some-more customizable than iOS. 

Image around Flickr user Tiago A. Pereira

The new launch of iOS 8 saw millions of people upgrading their iPhones’ handling systems (and many unwell to have enough accessible memory to do so). It’s a bit some-more difficult for Android users, who get their updates from Google, device manufacturers, and their wireless providers. This week, Malwarebytes shows us a antagonistic Android app that takes advantage of that difficulty by disguising itself as a program refurbish for your Android.

Fake Update
On a own, a antagonistic app isn’t able of rooting your phone. But Malwarebytes explains that it does check to see if your phone is rooted. If it is, it takes advantage of base collection and commands to work with escalated privileges.

What can it do with those extended powers? Monitor incoming calls for one, in further to content messages. It can also send content messages though your permission. Getting control of content messages and calls is frightful from a remoteness perspective, though it has inclusive consequences for security. If an assailant can manipulate your texts, he can pointer we adult for reward SMS numbers that supplement charges to your wireless check and line a attacker’s slot (or a pockets of a attacker’s affiliates).

When banks and other institutions need to yield an additional covering of security, they infrequently use SMS messages to send two-factor authentication codes. We’ve seen some cases where modernized Android malware works with PC malware to take bank logins though victims being a wiser. However, we can usually assume how a malware authors use these powers.

Lastly, Malwarebytes told SecurityWatch that a feign refurbish app can also download and implement additional apps. While we don’t know what kind of apps it’s installing, there are any series of reasons because this could be dangerous. It could, for example, implement additional malware. This could let an assailant take login information one day, and afterwards spin putrescent phones into a botnet a next. Again, pristine speculation, though a intensity is positively there.

Staying Safe
The researchers during Malwarebytes contend they trust a antagonistic app originated in China and is widespread by URLs in spam messages. While it’s not transparent if this nasty app has a aim audience, it’s not surprising for malware attacks like this to be rarely regionalized. Either a malware is tailored for a sold group—say, business of a specific bank—or a spam debate that carries a malware is rarely targeted.

The best approach to equivocate apps like this is to never implement program from outward a Google Play store Android updates will come true from Google, or your wireless provider. Updates are never pushed out by Web links. In fact, we should be really questionable of any links sent to your phone, even if they appear to come from someone we trust.

Lastly, it’s a good thought to implement Android confidence software. There are many options available, and we suggest Editors’ Choice winners Bitdefender Mobile Security and avast! Mobile Security Antivirus.

Android 5.0 OS, also famous as Android L or Android Lion is set to accept a many formidable refurbish Google has ever achieved on a in-house-made handling system. The Android L will have a totally new pattern and a array of new features. Also, it will yield 32 bit and 64 bit support, and this will many really change a substructure for mobile handling systems. Looks like a new Android L has a garland of good things in store. HTC have also announced they will perform vast scale updates on their destiny Android L phones. The HTC Nexus 9 will be a initial smartphone device with factory-loaded Android L. It will be a phone’s local handling system.

Samsung recently announced they have motionless as good to exercise a new updated Android on their Galaxy S5 and Galaxy Note 4 models. The Galaxy Note 4 is already fueled by a 64 bit processor, and this refurbish is approaching to move vital improvements in a Note’s altogether output. The dual models are scheduled to accept a refurbish somewhere around late Nov or early December. It will be engaging to see if other mobile device manufacturers will deliver a new Android L to their uninformed of a line products. So far, HTC is committing a many to this new Android OS, with an endless list of models to underline a update, including comparison devices.

Obviously, a Nexus 4 and 5 do not take partial in this contention as they are already propitious with Android L. Similar to Apple’s IOS 8, a Android L introduces a new information encryption process that will offer users a high grade of privacy. Google says user information will be encrypted automatically around a unlocking password, and not even they will be means to entrance it during that point. Even a user’s clear formula of a Android L operated device will be stored exclusively in a memory, and will not uncover adult in Google servers. The destiny sounds earnest for Android users that will be energetically watchful to exam out this new OS.

Google has officially done it probable to run Android apps on Chrome OS devices, yet a stream doing of this underline is a tiny underwhelming. First of all, it’s singular to usually a handful of apps, and second of all, it requires a Chrome OS laptop or desktop, and can’t be run in some-more widely-used handling systems. Now an desirous developer has managed to overcome both of those limitations, enabling (in theory) any Android app to run anywhere that Chrome does.

chrome app

Developer Vladikoff done ArChon, a customized chronicle of a Android Runtime for Chrome, that loads adult as a customary primer Chrome extension. (Power overwhelming.) The user afterwards takes an Android APK record and runs it by a delegate module that will modify it into a record entertaining by ArChon. Each Android app is installed into Chrome as a apart extension. The routine is most some-more formidable than Google’s central version, of march – if you’re not gentle messing with a authority line or two, it competence seem intimidating. But so distant users, including a few of us here during Android Police, have had success on non-ChromeOS computers. Vladikoff includes minute instructions on GitHub, along with a exam diversion for users to try out.

Here’s Vladikoff’s video proof of tradition apps on his Chromebook Pixel. The routine is a same for OS X and Linux, and usually a bit some-more formidable on Windows.

At benefaction ArChon is really unstable, generally on non-ChromeOS machines – any Android app that relies on Google Services is expected to pile-up a prolongation and presumably Chrome itself. But when it works a complement is impressive, including sound and adequate opening for light gaming. The fact that it’s probable with a comparatively tiny volume of growth from a third celebration means that Google competence be tighten to rolling out a wider Android-Chrome ecosystem. If zero else, Google has got to be salivating during a possibility to get all that additional functionality into the browser.

Source: GitHub – shawl tip to /r/chromeos and Ars Technica

With an Android L recover in sight and Samsung now rolling out Galaxy Android 4.4.4 KitKat updates to name devices, we wish to take a demeanour during a many critical things Galaxy smartphone users need to know about Samsung’s ongoing Android 4.4 Kitkat release.

At a commencement of June, Google expelled dual new Android 4.4 KitKat updates. First was Android 4.4.3. A few days later, a association pushed out Android 4.4.4 KitKat. Both were, and still are, bug fixers directed during squashing vital Android 4.4.2 KitKat problems and they continue to land for pivotal inclination in a build adult to Google’s Android L release.

Over past 3 and a half months, we’ve seen several Android manufacturers make it a indicate to broach these dual updates to smartphone and inscription users. And while it waited several weeks, Samsung finally assimilated a Android 4.4.4 KitKat party a few days ago as it, and a conduit partners, work to urge their large name devices.

Android 4.4.4 KitKat isn’t a usually name in city though. Samsung continues to pull out other forms of Android 4.4 KitKat including a aging Android 4.4.2 KitKat refurbish that initial started rolling out behind in Jan of this year. In addition, there are still some Android 4.4 KitKat refurbish mysteries that are swirling for pivotal devices.

Here, we wish to take a demeanour during a many critical information per a Samsung Galaxy Android 4.4 KitKat recover for pivotal inclination like a Galaxy S5, Galaxy S4, Galaxy Note 3, Galaxy Note 2, and a aging Galaxy S3. These sum will move Galaxy smartphone owners adult to date with all of a latest concerning Android 4.4, Android 4.4.4 KitKat and even a recover of Android L.

Android 4.4.2 KitKat Updates Continue

First things first. Samsung’s Android 4.4.2 KitKat refurbish continues to hurl out to a comparison inclination including a Galaxy Note 2, Galaxy S4, and even a Galaxy Note 3 in some regions. This is critical to indicate out since it means that your subsequent Android 4.4 KitKat refurbish might not be Android 4.4.4 KitKat, Google and Samsung’s latest.

android_kitkat-575x383android_kitkat-575x383

Remember, Samsung’s hurl outs are intensely indeterminate and pointless and there’s no approach to accurately envision hurl outs forward of time. Android 4.4.4 KitKat , for a moment, appears to be focused on a United States and there’s no revelation where it will land next. For many Galaxy smartphone users still on Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, and there are a garland of people on Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, Android 4.4 KitKat will substantially be next.

New Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat Updates Coming

We still don’t know when Telstra, C Spire or MetroPCS will hurl out their Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat updates, sum sojourn blank in action, nonetheless we do have a stone on some arriving Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat updates.

Australian conduit Vodafone says that a Galaxy S4 Cat.4 Android 4.4 KitKat refurbish is now in contrast nonetheless it doesn’t mention a version. Again, it’s probable that it will be Android 4.4.2 KitKat and not Android 4.4.4. What’s peculiar is that a unchanging aged Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat refurbish is not in testing, during slightest not as of late final week.

Galaxy-S4-Best-Cheap-Phone-June 2014Galaxy-S4-Best-Cheap-Phone-June 2014

Fellow Aussie conduit Optus still doesn’t have a Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat updates in for testing. It says it expects them in for contrast in October. What this means is that it, and other carriers, are expected weeks divided from an Android 4.4 KitKat recover presumption Samsung doesn’t opt to recover Android L instead. We simply haven’t seen any swell here, peculiar given that a Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 Kitkat refurbish started rolling out behind in February.

Galaxy S4 mini Android 4.4 KitKat Updates On a Way

We should also indicate out that a Galaxy S4 Android 4.4 KitKat refurbish should make swell in a subsequent integrate of weeks. Vodafone says that it has it in for contrast and presumption a contrast goes well, it should hurl out to business in a nearby future. Testing typically takes a integrate of weeks to finish nonetheless updates mostly face delays.

Canadian conduit Rogers still lists a refurbish as entrance soon. Oddly enough, it lists it as an Android 4.4.3 KitKat update. We’re not certain what this means for a Galaxy S4 mini in Canada nonetheless we overtly doubt that a Android 4.4.3 KitKat refurbish will land for a Galaxy S4 mini. Android 4.4.2 KitKat or Android 4.4.4 KitKat seems some-more likely. Rogers also says that a Galaxy S3 mini and Galaxy Mega will be removing Android 4.4 KitKat shortly as well.

Finally Optus is observant Oct for a Galaxy S4 mini Android 4.4 KitKat refurbish so we are still weeks divided from a release. Look for a recover standing to emerge in a weeks ahead.

Galaxy S3 Android 4.4 KitKat Update Takes Step Backward

The Galaxy S3 Android 4.4 KitKat stays MIA for many users after a hurl out that initial started behind in May. We’ve listened that Samsung still hasn’t done a preference about a recover and this appears to be personification into a one general recover date that we’ve seen.

Vodafone Australia originally had an OTA adult for a Galaxy S3 Android 4.4 KitKat update. Now, we’re behind to block one. The conduit says that it doesn’t know when a refurbish will be done accessible for contrast that means that it could still be weeks divided during least.

Samsung Galaxy S5 vs Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S3 - Display HEROSamsung Galaxy S5 vs Galaxy S4 vs Galaxy S3 - Display HERO

We’re not certain where a T-Mobile USA Galaxy S3 Android 4.4 KitKat refurbish is either. T-Mobile’s rivals have pushed out a refurbish already nonetheless a UnCarrier stays wordless about a plans, even as it rolls out new Android 4.4.4 KitKat upgrades.

Galaxy Note 2 Android 4.4 KitKat Updates Still MIA

Galaxy Note 2 Android 4.4 KitKat updates sojourn adult in a atmosphere as well. T-Mobile USA still hasn’t pushed a refurbish and all of these aforementioned carriers, reduction Rogers, have nonetheless to pull out their Galaxy Note 2 Android 4.4 KitKat updates. The usually idea that we have right now is Optus’ guarantee of contrast in October.

Point is, we’re awaiting a Galaxy Note 2 Android 4.4 KitKat refurbish to continue pulling out into a tumble and perhaps, into a winter as well. Keep in mind, we’re still saying Android 4.3 Jelly Bean updates hurl out to inclination like a Galaxy S3. Samsung’s routine is intensely delayed and users will need to sojourn patient.

Hopefully, Samsung pushes out a remaining Galaxy Note 2 Android 4.4.2 KitKat refurbish and fills owners in on a prospects of Android L.

Android 4.4.4 KitKat Update Update

Here’s what we’ve seen this far:

Android L Release Dates Rumored

It looks like Samsung is formulation to recover Android L updates after Android 4.4.4 KitKat. That doesn’t come as most of a warn given that a competitors have already reliable Android L updates.

According to SamMobile, Samsung will recover Galaxy Note 4 and Galaxy S5 Android L updates to reinstate a Android 4.4 KitKat program that’s now on house these dual flagships. Furthermore, a announcement claims that a Galaxy S5 and Galaxy Note 4 Android L updates could be expelled in a Nov to Dec time frame.

If true, this would be most quicker than final year’s Android 4.4 KitKat hurl out that started in Jan after an initial Android 4.4 KitKat recover in November. Samsung is still pulling out Android 4.4.2 KitKat updates to Samsung Galaxy users roughly a year after it was initial released.

Galaxy-Note-4Galaxy-Note-4

It’s critical to note that program refurbish recover dates, generally vital ones like a Android L release, can change during a dump of a hat. Release dates are heavily contingent on contrast and a contrast routine will mostly furnish formula that lead to delays. Samsung’s Android 4.4 KitKat hurl out has gifted several delays.

In other words, 2015 isn’t out of a question. Older inclination are roughly positively going to get Android L in 2015.

Alongside a recover of ten million iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus handsets, Apple also expelled a subsequent chronicle of its mobile operating complement for its older devices. iOS 8 is a vital recover of a platform, and 5 days after a launch, one in 4 iOS inclination are running a latest chronicle of a OS.

Five days after a open recover of iOS 8, it has been commissioned on 25.95% of authorised iPads and iPhones. That compares to an designation rate of 48.41% for iOS 7, and 41.07% of iOS 6, in a same timescale. The data was collated by Fiksu from its cross-platform mobile marketing platform.

iOS 8 Usage Data (compiled by Fiksu)

iOS 8 Usage Data (compiled by Fiksu)

While a reduce commission total might feel like a failure, a increasing user bottom of Apple inclination will have contributed to that reduce percentage. Apple’s user bottom will consist of some-more unchanging users, who will not be prepared to burst onto a new OS recover a second they are alerted to it. It’s substantially some-more critical to demeanour during a figure of a adoption curve. In a box of iOS 6, iOS 7, and iOS 8, a peaks, curves, and troughs, are all following a similar pattern, despite with some-more smoothing on a iOS 8 curve.

The trend for quickly updating a OS continues, and Apple should be unapproachable of a uptake in such a brief period.

The fast adoption of iOS 8 will be a bonus for developers. With a singular portfolio of inclination and handling systems to consider, Apple suffers from reduction fragmentation than Android, but developers will be prickly to concentration on a new facilities and collection accessible in a iOS 8 SDK. The faster a user-base moves to a new system, a smoother an knowledge developers will have.

The percentage of iOS users on a latest OS (in 5 days) is ahead of a commissioned bottom of Android 4.4 KitKat (launched on Oct 31 2013). According to Google’s possess figures, Android 4.4 ‘KitKat’ has a stream placement bottom of 24.5% after 10 months and twenty-two days.

It took Apple reduction than 5 days to renovate those numbers.

In Pictures: Reviewing The iPhone 6 Plus

A new chronicle of a Android handling complement has been in a works during Google for some time, yet was finally suggested to a open during a keynote debate during June’s Google I/O conference. Android L, formerly famous as Android 5, is a vital depart for a mobile OS, with a totally redesigned interface, some-more liquid animations, a renewed concentration on improving battery life and, for a initial time, harmony with 64-bit processors.

Android L will go adult opposite iOS 8, that along with a iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus will give Apple inclination a vital boost. Google won’t wish to hang around before phenomenon a latest handling complement and is approaching to launch it this autumn.

There have been a lot of announcements following a initial reveal, so we’ve collected them all in one place to give we all we need to know about Android L forward of a approaching recover after this year. This essay also covers a new Android Wear smartwatch handling complement – corkscrew down to examination about a OS we can wear on your wrist. 

Updates for comparison phones

Any vital Android recover will be energetically anticipated, yet it’s not many fun being stranded on an old-fashioned chronicle since your phone manufacturer doesn’t devise to recover an update. Thankfully that shouldn’t be a box for HTC and Motorola customers. Right after Google done Android L official, HTC expelled a matter confirming a stream One (m8) and strange One (m7) would be receiving Android L updates “within 90 days of [HTC] receiving final program from Google.” A leaked roadmap, posted to XDA Developers, appears to uncover skeleton to supplement other handsets to this tiny list, yet many are now noted as “under evaluation” rather than confirmed.

Motorola has already reliable that the new Moto G will be updated to Android L, while a new Moto X will also roughly positively be upgraded to Android L. As both inclination use a batch chronicle of Android they are approaching to be among a initial to get a update.

Android L 5 could also be entrance to a Samsung Galaxy S5 and Galaxy Note 4 as early as November. The latest chronicle of a Android handling system, that is nonetheless to be given an executive name, is set to launch in a autumn yet a recover date has not been confirmed.

If Google launches Android L 5 alongside a new Nexus 6 afterwards it is approaching to come to flagship handsets from a likes of Samsung, HTC and LG shortly after. According to Sammobile a Galaxy Note 4 and Galaxy S5 will be among a initial inclination to get a Android L 5 upgrade. No specific dates are mentioned a news claims a refurbish will arrive “by a finish of November/early December”.

Unfortunately zero of a other vital manufacturers have done an executive matter on that phones will be removing an refurbish to Android L, potentially forcing owners to bottom their inclination and implement unaccepted tradition ROMs to get Google’s latest and greatest.

Release date

Android L is accessible right now, in developer preview form for a Nexus 5 smartphone and Nexus 7 tablet, from developer.android.com. If you’re prepared to get your hands dirty, we can even implement it on handsets from third celebration manufacturers; there’s already a tradition ROM for a HTC One (m7) and others are appearing any day on a XDA Developer forums.

Google isn’t nonetheless prepared to speak about an executive recover date yet, as we approaching have to wait for a new Nexus device to seem to coincide with a launch. This isn’t approaching until during slightest a Autumn, definition a identical wait for Android TV and Android Auto. For everybody looking to reason onto their smartphone warranty, this means watchful for a executive recover after in a year.

Android L

Android L was a categorical eventuality during Google I/O, even if Sundar Pichai avoided giving it a sweet-sounding name. Google has referred to any chronicle of Android by a sweet-flavoured codename formed on augmenting letters of a alphabet; a strange 1.0 chronicle was Apple Pie, followed by Banana bread, Cupcake and Donut as versions 1.1, 1.5 and 1.6. Version 2.0 introduced a universe to Eclair, while 2.2 arrived as Froyo. Gingerbread referred to 2.3 and Honeycomb was 3.0, a initial chronicle designed with specific support for inscription devices. Android 4.0 was also famous as Ice Cream Sandwich and versions 4.1, 4.2 and 4.3 were all famous as Jelly Bean.

At this early theatre it’s misleading either Android L is a final name, or Google will exhibit a tangible pretension a small closer to launch. If a association sticks with L it’s a pointer that a handling complement is maturing, yet we’re holding out for something a small sweeter. Google was approaching to call Android 4.4 Key Lime Pie, yet a tie-in with Nestle saw chronicle 4.4 go by KitKat instead. That leaves a doorway open for other companies to burst on a bandwagon, with Liquorice Allsorts and Lion Bar both suggested.

This seems doubtful yet as both are typically usually found in Europe. The Lion Bar, also done by Nestle, was usually sole in US and Canadian import shops in North America and it would be peculiar for Google to go with such a little-known brand. The same goes for Liquorice Allsorts. That leaves Android Lollipop or Android Lemon Meringue Pie as a dual other rumoured names. The names competence be some-more generic, generally after Android KitKat, yet they’re both formally honeyed and memorable.

Material Design

Android L reportedly has over 5,000 new APIs ticking divided behind a scenes, yet a many apparent changes will always be a visible ones. The new Material pattern intrigue is set to seem on any Google platform, not usually Android, yet it will demeanour best on smartphones and tablets. Apparently Google drew impulse from pens and inks, with any idol and user interface component casting an accurate shade to give a clarity of depth. Everything animates as we hold it, with objects drifting into perspective and tapped icons rippling like puddles.


Android L Homescreen

The home screen, close screen, Quick Settings pull-down menu, categorical settings page and even a onscreen navigation buttons have perceived a makeover, and Android L will also embody new complement widgets to compare a pattern scheme. Finally, any Google app will be redesigned to compare a new look, with some carrying already been upgraded in time for a early Developer Preview recover following Google I/O.

Certain redesigned apps were teased behind sealed during Google I/O, yet that hasn’t stopped leaked images from appearing online; a tip form trickle so distant has suggested a completely new demeanour for a Play Store, on both inscription and smartphone. Images of a work-in-progress chronicle of a app uncover a incomparable concentration on images, a simplified layout, some-more colour coordination and some-more inflection for film trailers or app/game teaser videos. The leaked images still uncover Google has some work to do, as minute calm appears to be missing, yet it should make it many easier to crop by a expanded Play Store to find what you’re looking for once a refurbish arrives.

The notifications complement has been totally overhauled for Android L as well. Currently, Android users have to clear their device to check, respond to or boot notifications, yet with Android L they will be means to do this from a close screen. They will seem as a smoke-stack of Google Now-like cards, that can be corkscrew by rather than flooding a screen. Each one has an in-line preview, giving context.

Features

Android L isn’t all about looks; it will also embody a new Personalised Unlocking mode. Essentially it creates your smartphone or inscription hunt for informed Bluetooth gadgets, Wi-Fi networks, locations and even voice imprints to deactivate any lockscreen protections, vouchsafing we burst true into your phone when it knows you’re nearby. If a device can’t detect any of these metrics, anyone perplexing to use it will be presented with a customary lockscreen.

Android L Lockscreen

The new apps page will spin a new calm page, displaying all your calm in one list of Google Now-styled cards. You’ll be means to burst between apps and a web, with links in Google hunt formula jumping true from a browser into a applicable partial of an app. Although not particularly built into Android L, Google will also be giving a mobile webpages and hunt an renovate in time for a release. The Material pattern will be carried across, along with well-spoken animations and a slicker UI.

Google will be updating a batch Android keyboard for Android L, adding some-more personalisation facilities and scrapping a particular tiled keys – instead any minute will lay on a prosaic background, that should make it easier for those with incomparable fingers and thumbs to form quickly. Also set to arrive are a Do No Disturb mode, that automatically deactivates all notifications and audio during set times, support for Bluetooth 4.1 and a totally redesigned Audio backend with support for USB audio devices.

Performance

Android L should arrive with copiousness of opening improvements as good as visible changes, that should assistance speed adult existent phones as good as make a many of new hardware. The biggest back-end change is a pierce from a Dalvik runtime to ART. Part of a handling complement during a simple level, a ART runtime supports ARM, x86 and MiPS instructions, and a brew of AOT, JIT and interpreted formula – radically Android now speaks a lot some-more languages and will work on some-more CPUs than a predecessor. This alone could urge opening by as many as duplicate over Dalvik, though developers creation any formula adjustments.

DirectX 11-level graphics will finally make their approach to Android regulating a Android prolongation pack. This set of APIs support modernized effects such as tessellation, geometry shaders, hardness application and discriminate shaders, and have a intensity to put mobile inclination on customary with games consoles and PC games.

Android L discerning settings

Battery life

Google has strong on improving battery life in Android L with Project Volta. Similar to how Jelly Bean’s Project Butter was an bid to make animations feel smoother and some-more responsive, Project Volta includes a new battery historian to improved visualize beat discharge, assisting users work out what a device was doing during any given indicate in a battery cycle to find out that apps are removal a many power.

A battery saver mode will be enclosed in batch Android for a initial time with Android L, after being a common tweak for third celebration manufacturers. It will activate automatically when your battery drops subsequent a certain percentage, downclocking a CPU, disabling additional facilities like plcae stating and dimming a display. Google says a Nexus 5 regulating Android L gets around 90 mins of additional use over a march of a customary day, though indeed changing how a patron uses their phone.

Android Wear

Although Android Wear is an wholly apart height to Android L, it forms an constituent partial of a mobile handling system. Naturally it has a same Material design, with relating colours, icons, fonts and animations to Android L. Notifications form a heart of a handling system, appearing as cards that can be swiped by as they appear, swiped divided to boot and double-tapped to correlate with. Notifications are synchronised with a interconnected smartphone, so when we boot one on an Android Wear device is also disappears from your handset. A Do Not Disturb mode can be activated with a singular downwards appropriate from a tip of a screen, for when we don’t wish notifications to worry you.

LG G Watch organisation shot

There’s no need to implement apps to an Android Wear device; if an app works with Android Wear, it will automatically implement to your wearable when we implement a mobile app on your smartphone. When a mobile app updates, a Wear chronicle will refurbish too, definition no apart app store and no need to juggle mixed apps as with a singular memory Pebble. The app preference is now really limited, with a few built-in abilities such as song playback control, continue reports and tradition watch faces – comparison by dire and holding on a default watch face. One of a best apps now upheld is Google’s possess Maps, that includes spin navigation when walking to a destination.

Moto 360 turn-by-turn maps

The best news is that we can buy one right now from a Google Play Store, forward of Android L’s full release. We’ve also seen a flurry of new smartwatches expelled recently, such as a Asus ZenWatch, Sony Smartwatch 3, LG G Watch R and Motorola Moto 360

Google Fit

Google’s possess health and aptness hub, that is set to lift in information from third celebration aptness apps and wearables in sequence to keep it in one executive location, wasn’t utterly prepared for a full exhibit with Android L during a I/O conference. Whether it will arrive in time to come preinstalled on Android L inclination stays to be seen, yet we do know it feels really many like a approach response to Apple’s Healthkit initiative. We consider Google Fit has some-more intensity since it will be an open system; Google will roughly positively launch a use with Android Wear smartwatches in mind, yet there’s zero interlude developers from porting a record to other handling systems – including Apple’s iOS.

Google expelled a Fit program growth pack (SDK) and developer preview to a official developer hub in early August, providing APIs that can give apps or inclination a ability to send and store information from aptness wearables and practice apps opposite Android – either a information was saved to that app creatively or not. The SDK includes a Sensors API, Recording API and History API, and is now usually concordant with a Nexus 5 smartphone or Nexus 7 inscription regulating a latest Android L developer preview.

We’re still watchful for a initial formula from this preview, yet we’re assured that many Android developers are already tough during work to confederate a new facilities into their existent apps, prepared for when Google creates Fit strictly accessible to business after this year.

Android TV

Coming to set-top boxes, TVs and micro-consoles early subsequent year, Android TV is a tweaked chronicle of Android L designed privately for a large screen. It uses many of a same formula base, but has been designed from a belligerent adult for streaming services, on-demand calm and casting media from a smartphone. Like a rest of Google’s Android L announcements, Android TV will use a Material Design ethos and apps will demeanour really identical opposite mobile, inscription and TV.

Android TV during Google IO

Android TV can be used usually like a Chromecast, yet it will do distant some-more than arrangement smartphone apps on your TV. The tile-based homescreen sits on tip of a now personification TV channel, and can be tranquil regulating usually a D pad and voice input. That means there’s no need for a dedicated remote, as an Android smartphone or Android Wear smartwatch will be means to wholly navigate a interface. Using Google KnowledgeGraph, users will even be means to ask enigmatic questions like “who played Katniss in a Hunger Games” to lift adult films starring Jennifer Lawrence. Google Play Games is also enclosed for personification Android games on a large shade regulating a smartphone or dedicated gaming controller.

There will be a dedicated Android TV store for apps, and with hardware support from Intel and Marvell many inclination should be means of personification gorgeous-looking mobile games during Full HD resolutions.

Sharp, Sony and Philips/TP Vision have committed to Android TV for 2015, that hopefully means it will be off to a improved start than a luckless Google TV behind in 2010. 

Android Auto

The final square of a Android L nonplus is Android Auto, a in-car chronicle of Google’s mobile OS. Designed privately to let drivers entrance navigation and audio apps though holding their eyes off a road,Android Auto runs of a connected smartphone rather than being commissioned in a automobile itself; a phone merely casts a shade to a incomparable arrangement built into a dashboard. This means Google can supplement facilities and ascent hardware though creation changes to a cars that use a technology, avoiding a need to resubmit to reserve inspections with any program update.

Android Auto in-car

Android Auto can be tranquil wholly regulating voice commands, or a buttons built into a steering circle if your automobile has them, to assistance keep drivers’ eyes on a road. If your automobile has a touchscreen arrangement it will be means to use that too. It will let drivers entrance a name series of apps, that Google hold protected for use on a road, and updates them with personal or contextually applicable information. Directions to meetings can be pulled from emails and calendar appointments, afterwards displayed with live trade and spin by spin navigation regulating Google Maps. Voice enabled messaging lets we examination and respond to content messages though reaching for a phone, and several song streaming apps including Google Play Music have already been blending privately for a minimal Android Auto interface.

Google has now over 40 partners in a Open Automotive Alliance, that supports an open in-car intelligent device customary platform, and 25 automobile bands will be rising vehicles with Android Auto support over a subsequent year. The initial cars are likely to start rolling off forecourts after this year.

Android security

For those anxiously available a rollout of Android “L,” there’s a new bit of information to supplement even some-more fad to a wait. This news is a arrange of double-edged sword (depending on how we perspective confidence as a whole). What I’m articulate about is a fact that Android “L” will, out of a box, encrypt your data.

That’s right. Instead of carrying to go by a extensive (and, in some cases, “brick-inducing”) routine of encrypting a storage on your device, a “L” refurbish will encrypt it by default. This will, effectively, assistance strengthen your information from meddling eyes. All good, right? Not if you’re on a side of a NSA and law enforcement. From that side of a confidence fence, things get a bit some-more complicated. Without we carrying to do a singular thing, that information will be a worry to access… even for a powers that be — or so one would think. The thing is, encryption will strengthen a information while it resides on your phone. When that information resides on a cloud use or other form of server, you’re not as stable as we consider we are, regardless of a platform. You’re during a forgiveness of your provider AND yourself. Let me explain.

You have your glossy new Android or iOS device and, for all intents and purposes, it’s encrypted, protected, and differently stable from meddling eyes. But what about that POP or IMAP comment we count on? What about your Facebook comment with a cue “password123″? What about a close shade though a PIN, pattern, or password? What about your VPN connection?

You see where I’m going with this?

Google and Apple can do all in their powers to pierce newer and improved levels of confidence to their devices. In a end, however, a confidence of mobile information is in a hands of a user.

  • Subaru creates a stable car. If we don’t expostulate it safely, your life is in your hands.
  • Wüsthof creates some extraordinary kitchen knives. If we use them improperly, we can get hurt.

Google produces an superb mobile platform. If we use it though caring or counsel to security, your information is during risk. Period. End of story.

Or is it? So many questions… who’s obliged for responding them?

We live in a universe where censure isn’t taken as severely as it should. The finger of censure has turn as prevalent as a “finger of shame.” As many as we hatred to acknowledge it, a universe is in such a state where people wish to do a slightest volume possible. People don’t wish to enter a cue each time they open their device. They don’t wish to encrypt their storage since it takes time. Those in a margin of IT conflict this daily. When we make a despotic cue policy, finish users complain. They don’t wish to change their passwords each 30 days or have to enter certification only to use their smartphone — that same device they use for work each day (the one that stores supportive data).

This opinion toward confidence contingency change. Honestly, confidence is breached each singular day. With companies that spend millions on confidence removing hacked, do we consider your defenceless smartphone is secure? Think Target. Think Home Depot. Your information is not stable — not though a bit of bid on your part. No matter what Google or Apple does, in a end, we contingency take stairs to assistance secure your data. For example:

  • Use two-step authentication on Google
  • Add cue insurance to your lockscreen
  • Encrypt your data
  • Use plain passwords for ALL accounts
  • Read a permissions listings before we daub Accept
  • Don’t bond to unsecured wireless networks

If we don’t do that unclothed minimum, your information is during risk, regardless of what Google does with Android “L.” Yes, delinquent to encrypted information will assistance a cause, though that does not let a finish user off a offshoot for security.

There are apps out there to assistance we secure your data, including:

The list goes on.

I trust Android “L” will be a best iteration of a height to date. we consider delinquent to encrypted information is a intelligent pierce on Google’s part, one that will assistance pierce a covering of confidence to smartphones that many users have never experienced. However, that doesn’t let a finish user off a offshoot to do their part. You should never assume possibly Google or Apple will do all for you. You contingency do your partial to strengthen a information on your smartphone — otherwise, it’s not safe.

Do we consider Android “L” will be a many secure iteration of a platform? If not, what prevents Android from garnering your “thumbs up” for security? Share your thoughts in a contention thread below.

Friends (“The One Where a Monkey Gets Away”) is on TV, Alanis Morissette is angrily screaming “You oughta know” on a radio, your bff messages we on WhatsApp. What’s a misfit in this picture? Nothing if you’re rocking LG’s Wine Smart — a singular smartphone flip phone. Nostalgia from a 90s (or, really, 2007) aside, a Wine Smart isn’t all that unusual. Flip phones are still renouned in certain markets, and because wouldn’t we wish one with a latest chronicle of Android, a 1.2GHz processor, 8-megapixel camera and expandable memory? Well, that’s accurately what a Wine intelligent has, nonetheless if we were anticipating LG’s 2K arrangement competence filter down from the G3, you’d be uninformed outta fitness (3.5-inch, 480 x 320 is what you’ll have to settle for). The inclusion of a “safe keeper” duty that alerts friends or family if we tumble advise this is pitched during an comparison crowd. But, afterwards there’s a dedicated symbol for a present messaging app, too. We’re certain LG knows a marketplace though, so who are we to question? Oh, there’s an FM radio too. Perfect for that Morissette revival, whenever and wherever LG decides to recover it.


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