Android 12 cheat sheet: Every little thing you might want to know

Android 12 improves the person expertise from Android 11 and provides thrilling options to the platform. This is what builders, companies and customers must learn about Google’s Android 12.

Picture: Jack Wallen

The Android working system has come a really great distance from its humble and awkward beginnings. As a substitute of the cellular platform being an underdog, unprepared to serve energy customers and those that want a cellular gadget designed for enterprise, Android is now completely adept at dealing with all the pieces you throw at it and be probably the most private Google OS ever.

There are areas the place the platform might use some polish–that’s the place Android 12 comes into play. The most recent iteration of Google’s cellular working system brings new options and tweaks to varied components, in addition to enhancements to privateness and even haptic suggestions.

Let’s discover out what’s new to Android 12 and what options might need you champing on the bit to improve your present model of the working system. Learn this Android 12 cheat sheet to rise up to hurry on Google’s newest OS. We’ll replace this useful resource periodically when there may be new details about Android 12.

SEE: Prime Android safety ideas (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

What’s Android 12?

Android 12 is the most recent launch of Google’s cellular working system, and it’s seamlessly built-in with Google’s app ecosystem. Meaning, out of the field, Android pairs completely with the likes of Gmail, Google Docs, Google Calendar, Google Photographs and nearly any of the apps provided inside Google Workspaces, for enterprise customers.

Android additionally occurs to be probably the most widely-used cellular working system on the planet, with over 83% of worldwide smartphones shipped with Android (so far) in 2021.  

As with the later releases of Android, Google has executed away with the pastry nomenclature, and opted for a easy numerical naming convention–hence, Android 12.

SEE: Android 11: A cheat sheet (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

What new options include Android 12?

So far as new options coming to Android 12, all the pieces listed right here is predicated on the developer preview that was launched on Feb. 18, 2021. 

New options within the Developer Preview 2 launch

With the second launch of the Android 12 Developer Preview, there are just a few new options which were added, resembling:

  • Builders can now require authentication for actions carried out from the lock display
  • Android can now confirm the integrity of an put in app and forestall a questionable app from displaying content material through overlay alerts
  • New frameworks have been launched to make it doable for growth groups to jot down apps for telephones with rounded corners

New Android 12 options introduced throughout Google I/O 2021

On Might 18, through the Google I/O keynote, the next options had been introduced: 

  • The lock display shall be extra playful with dynamic lighting.
  • The notification shade shall be extra intuitive.
  • Fast Settings has been redesigned to incorporate Google Pay and House Controls.
  • Google Assistant might be invoked by long-pressing the ability button.
  • CPU time has been decreased by 22%, making all the pieces in Android sooner.
  • Privateness Dashboard shall be a straightforward to make use of location to handle app permissions.
  • An indicator will seem when an app is utilizing the digicam or the mic.
  • Fast settings now embrace toggles to disable the mic and digicam systemwide.
  • Android Non-public Compute Core, which powers the likes of Android Caption and does not share info with some other app or service.

AVIF picture help

Certainly one of most anticipated options coming to Android 12 is AVIF picture help. This new picture format will significantly enhance the compression of pictures with out compromising the standard of the pictures. Meaning bigger pictures recordsdata might be transmitted, utilizing much less bandwidth. This is not only a boon for customers who prefer to eat pictures all through the day, it additionally means builders can combine much more visible components into their apps, with out inflicting bottlenecks, buffering, or information consumption points. This new format makes use of the open supply video codec AV1 which was first launched in Android 10. 

Appropriate media transcoding

Google is including a brand new transcoding layer to Android 12 that may make it doable for apps that do not at the moment help the Excessive Effectivity Video Coding (HEVC) video compression normal to benefit from this much-improved video compression. This new normal is the successor to the widely-used Superior Video Coding compression format and provides 25-50% higher information compression on the similar video high quality degree.

Just like the addition of AVIF picture help, HEVC will make it doable for builders to ship extra video whereas utilizing much less bandwidth. 

This compatibility layer, nevertheless, ought to solely be thought-about a stop-gap for builders. Google is urging all builders to incorporate HEVC help of their apps.

Third-party app retailer help

Android builders are working to make it doable for customers to securely set up apps from third-party app shops, with some assurances that by doing so, their gadget safety will not be compromised.

How the builders plan on pulling this off is unknown, as of this second. The why, nevertheless, has been made clear. Google is planning this variation on account of latest considerations surrounding Android app growth and the difficulties discovered with in-app fee techniques for companies which were compelled to maneuver on-line, because of COVID-19. 

Nonetheless, it ought to be famous that in-app funds for apps discovered within the Google Play Retailer is not going to change. Google has made it very clear that every one apps with in-app funds should use Google Play’s billing system. 

SEE: Hiring package: Android Developer (TechRepublic Premium)

App Hibernation

This subsequent new function could have a major affect on Android battery life. App Hibernation will successfully hibernate all apps that are not at the moment in use. This implies solely these apps in use will drain your gadget battery. This function may even clear your app cache robotically.

App Pairs

Android Cut up Display screen already permits you to use two apps directly, however with Android 12, a brand new function, known as App Pairs, will enable customers to open two apps which might be generally used collectively concurrently. This function will group two apps collectively as one single “process.” 

With App Pairs, customers will be capable to decide two lately opened apps and make them a pair. As soon as these apps are paired, customers can then simply swap between a single app and a pair.

New theming system 

The builders are additionally bringing a brand new theming system to Android 12. This method will enable customers to pick out a principal and accent colour for apps, or enable them to have their system theme be primarily based on their present wallpaper. 

Haptic audio impact

With Android 12, builders will be capable to mix haptic suggestions patterns with audio. This might not solely profit video games, however the capacity of customers to establish callers, primarily based on haptic suggestions, or embrace haptic suggestions whereas listening to music.

SEE: Energy guidelines: Managing and troubleshooting Android units (TechRepublic Premium)

Double-tap actions

Android 12 will deliver double-tap actions to supported units (in the mean time, that’s restricted to Google Pixel telephones). With this function, you possibly can configure actions for while you double-tap the again of your cellphone. Presently supported actions embrace: 

  • Taking a screenshot
  • Taking part in and pausing media
  • Viewing latest apps
  • Opening the notification shade
  • Launching Google Assistant

One-handed ease

Till now, utilizing a bigger gadget with one hand poses a problem, particularly for these with smaller digits. Android 12 will deliver a couple of new One-Handed Mode. This new function is much like iPhone’s Reachability function. When that is enabled, it will migrate the interface to the center of your show, placing all the pieces inside attain.

One other extra one-handed pleasant function is named Silky House, which migrates most allow/disable toggles to the middle of the display.

Much less management for extra media

Not each utility that performs media ought to have entry to the Fast Settings media management panel. With Android 12, customers can allow or disable particular person app entry to Fast Settings. This can make for a a lot cleaner Fast Settings management panel.

What enhancements are in Android 12?

Now we’ll check out a number of the enhancements of earlier options which might be coming to Android 12.

Improved Wi-Fi sharing

Again in Android 10, Google made it fairly simple to share a Wi-Fi connection, utilizing a QR code. That is all wonderful and good, when a person is standing subsequent to you to allow them to rapidly scan the code. With Android 12, the builders are going to benefit from Close by Share, so customers can ship Wi-Fi configuration (SSID/password) through Bluetooth to close by units so a recipient solely needs to be inside Bluetooth vary.

The one caveat to that is that Bluetooth packets are pretty simple to intercept. Hopefully Google will discover a approach to encrypt Wi-Fi info that’s shared through this technique.

Improved updates

The Google builders are planning to make the Android Runtime a Mainline module in Android 12. What this does is enable Google to ship extra working system element updates through the Google Play Retailer. This can have two results:

  • Updates shall be smaller and extra frequent
  • Updates shall be sooner

Anybody that has skilled a prolonged safety patch replace will recognize the significance of this enchancment.

Higher screenshot markup

Android 12 will deliver to the screenshot device the flexibility so as to add textual content, Emoji and stickers, with out having to depend on a third-party device. 

Gesture enchancment and cleaner UI

The UI has been fully overhauled, each bit impressed by Materials You. Google Pixel units will use Colour Extraction which implies the system will create a customized palette primarily based on pictures used as wallpaper. Each Android interface shall be one-of-a-kind.

New Materials Design capacity such that type might comply with feeling with the flexibility to create private design palettes that reply in real-time. Apps will adapt comfortably and provides customers transformative management. Materials You is a radical new means of theming Android. There will be a mode for each temper, and can be capable to journey throughout your entire related units.

SEE: All of TechRepublic’s cheat sheets and good individual’s guides (TechRepublic)

Enhancements discovered within the Developer Preview 2 launch:

There are additionally just a few enhancements to be discovered within the Android 12 Developer Preview 2 launch, resembling:

  • Image-in-picture (PiP) management might be dealt with by means of a single faucet on a PiP window to show the window controls; double-tapping a PiP window toggles between the present and the utmost PiP dimension
  • Enhancements to app bandwidth estimations
  • Builders could have a a lot simpler time producing blurs, colour filters and miscellaneous results
  • New APIs have been launched to maintain apps working on companion units (resembling smartwatches and health trackers)

What security measures are in Android 12?

One of many greatest additions to Android’s safety will have an effect on the WebView engine that third-party apps use to view on-line content material (outdoors of the Chrome browser). WebView shall be adopting Chrome’s SameSite cookie setting which can mitigate sure varieties of monitoring. Google Assistant may even rapidly assist you to repair compromised passwords.

Android Non-public Compute Core powers the likes of Android Caption and does not share info with some other app or service.

Privateness toggles

One other new safety function is Privateness toggles, which can enable customers to rapidly flip off entry to their gadget microphone and/or digicam. These toggles shall be out there throughout the Fast Settings menu within the notification shade. The toggles will learn Block Digicam and Mute Microphone.

Locked pictures enable customers to password shield particular folders in Photographs. This can first arrive on Google Pixel units and can later roll out to different supported units.

How can builders begin utilizing Android 12?

On February 18, 2021, Google launched the developer preview of Android 12. That launch is aimed particularly at builders, so Google made positive the apps are suitable with the brand new OS and options. 

To get began, builders might want to flash a tool system picture to one of many following Google Pixel units:

  • Pixel 3/3 XL
  • Pixel 3a/3a XL
  • Pixel 4/4 XL
  • Pixel 4a/4a 5G
  • Pixel 5 

When will Android 12 be launched?

As of now, there isn’t any definitive launch date for Android 12; nevertheless, the general public beta of Android 12 was made out there on Might 18, 2021.

The Android 12 Developer Preview has been launched and is accessible for the Google Pixel 5, Pixel 4a 5G, Pixel 4a, Pixel 4, Pixel 4 XL, Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL, Pixel 3a, and Pixel 3a XL. You possibly can obtain a Developer Preview 2 picture and flash it to your gadget to check the preview launch.

Editor’s observe: This cheat sheet has been up to date to incorporate bulletins from the Google I/O 2021 convention.

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