On March this year, a technological milestone was achieved that ended a long era, the era of windows dominance in the OS market. Google’s Android surpassed Microsoft Windows to become the most used operating system, according to web analytics firm StatCounter.
While combining all the devices might still make you think Android is fighting a tough competition, looking more closely on its niche market will tell you a whole different story. With a growing community of around 2 billion active users, the undisputed king of the mobile operating system has a share of 87.5% in mobile OS market.
The number of devices supporting the OS has been increasing since its inception. The mobile companies which used to have their own operating system have shifted to using Android on their devices. And the ones who haven’t have lost their share in mobile handsets too. For instance, consider OS Bada. It was Samsung’s own operating system but was discontinued by the company looking at the growth potential of Android.
Other big players who refused to shift to Android have lost their market share in the handsets segment too, and among the biggest losers are Nokia and Blackberry.
Android in News
Nokia, after keeping itself away from Android for so many years and making failed attempts to revamp its sales with Windows Mobile OS, finally decided to rectify its mistakes by adopting it for some of its models. Nokia has confirmed that its upcoming flagship phone Nokia 9 will have the latest Android version Android Oreo.
Don’t forget to read – 9 things to remember when building an Android app
Some big brands who are counting on Android for their latest products include Lamborghini. Yes, you read it right! The luxury car maker has come up with an Android phone, called the Alpha – One.
Android has a bright future in the wearable device segment too. latest news is coming from the Italian fashion brand and watch-maker – The Diesel. It is all set to launch its first Android Wear watch under the name Diesel on Full Guard.
Also, Microsoft is coming up with a host of new features this September for its Office apps for Android. These new features will provide better security and enhanced user experience on all three apps (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint).
Android Releases its newest Android 8.0 Update: Android Oreo
A few days back, in August 21st, Google unveiled its latest version of Android – Oreo. The new version has brought many major improvements and lots of new cool features. It is also believed to be the most secure version of the operating system and is being seen to have taken a leap in the security area.
Android 8.0 Oreo Upgrade: Availability
The upgrade is now available on Pixel devices. And according to an article published by android central, it will be available for Nexus 6 and Nexus 6P from 5th and 11th September respectively. A non-Google flagship device user will have to wait a few months to receive the upgrade.
What makes Android Oreo Powerful of All Android Versions?
Highlights For the users: Android Oreo – Better UI
1.Refurbished File Manager
We all have experienced that the File manager available on Android gives us a really tough time in browsing the file we want. This is the reason apps like Solid Explorer and FX File Manager are so popular. In Android Oreo, you will see the file manager being given a better look, although if you used one of the above file managers, you’ll still find it lagging in a few features.
Just the way Chrome auto-fills the information on the fields like the name and address, in the same way, Oreo has been provided with an Autofill Framework now. This allows apps to create and manage their own list of auto-fill data. By default, if you have saved your passwords on Google Chrome or with Smart Lock, it will fetch that data from there.
If you’re a fan of Nougat’s split-screen mode, you’ll definitely like this one. Picture-in-picture is a feature that will allow the apps (like the video playing apps) to be viewed on the top of any other app. currently, this works with YouTube, YouTube Red, and VLC app.
4.Arrow key and tab navigation
If you have used a mouse on your android device be it your phone or a TV, you must have realized how difficult it is. The OS considers the mouse as a touch and hence it doesn’t go well with it. Oreo will identify a mouse and will interpret inputs from it accordingly. This feature is especially useful for Chromebooks and Android TVs.
You will also experience better navigation from keyboards also since users can now press Meta+Tab keys to navigate from one cluster to another – here clusters can mean: side panels, navigation bars, main content area and other child elements.
The above figure contains 5 Navigation Clusters.
Android Oreo: Stability
5.Background Process Restrictions and Limitations
The big issue of battery drain during standby is going to end with this version since Google has put limits on Background process execution on apps. This will restrict the apps on performing processes in the background that eats up a lot of battery.
Background limitations include limits imposed on apps for implicit broadcasts and location access. With these restrictions, Google has indeed shown that it’s going to be strict against apps which have been responsible for battery drains.
This feature is designed to fix the problem of repeated rebooting which happens when an app starts crashing continuously. Rescue Party is the name given to the feature which automatically takes the charge when it sees an app crashing more than 5 times in 30 seconds or system_server crashing more than 5 times in 5 minutes and will follow a series of step to fixing this issue. If the issue doesn’t get fixed with this, the feature will prompt a request for factory reset – which is a panacea in these scenarios.
Android Oreo: Notification Changes
This one is something you’d like the most if you are fed up of receiving constant notifications, especially from messaging apps. The cool new notification panel allows you to snooze an app’s notification by swiping it to the right and tapping the clock icon. It will come right back once the snooze time is over.
With Notification Channels, apps can create categories of different notifications if they want. Also, once the app has categorized its notifications, you can control the visibility and priority of individual categories.
Notification Dots will make your app icons resemble more like the ones in iOS. The dots on the icons will represent a new content that in the app. You can long press the dot and preview the information as a notification and swipe it away to mark it as “Read”.
Android Oreo: Connectivity
10.New Bluetooth codecs
The problem that Android had with Bluetooth seems to have resolved with this. Google has added a few codecs that include Sony’s LDAC codec which streams a better audio quality over Bluetooth. Though, to make sure it works as anticipated, you’ll have to buy a Bluetooth speaker/headphones which supports LDAC.
11.Wifi Aware & Automatic Turn on
Wifi Aware is added in Android 8.0 Oreo which will enable a user to detect another user which has the same version or higher. After detecting, the users can share data without the need to be on the same Network.
One exciting feature that this version has is, Wifi Assistant which on being switched on will automatically detect a strong public wireless network and will switch to that connection.
Other Changes in Android 8.0 Oreo
12.Settings Menu Redesigned
The first change that you will notice on your device is the Settings menu which has been given a subtle dark gray text on white background look. To our surprise, the side navigation menu introduced in the Nougat was gone. The redesign has been done to make the Settings area simpler and more straightforward.
13.More granular storage control
Managing your phone’s storage will be a lot easier now since the new storage menu will not just display the basic categories of storage space but will be a lot more detailed now. Upon selection of a category, you will now see how much storage space has each app utilized.
14.Overlay sticky notification
Google has added sticky notification features which will pop-up every time an app tries to draw some information from other apps. This is a decisive step towards increasing security. Although this feature was there in the Nougat, the notification won’t go away in this version until the overlay remains there.
Development Highlights for the Android Developers
1.Supports latest Java APIs – Oreo supports the latest Java APIs with optimized runtime:
- java.time from OpenJDK 8.
- java.nio.file and java.lang.invoke from OpenJDK 7.
2.AAudio API – This will help you deliver high performance and low latency audio. The API uses streams to read and write the data.
3.Font support in XML – You can now define your fonts directly in XML files. Now you don’t need to worry about this.
4.Adaptive Icons – The shape of an app icon will now be available for display according to the mask selected by the device which will give way for a better UI.
5.Project Treble – With this, Android has become more modular. The customization’s created by manufacturers (like the TouchWiz) will now be a separate entity, allowing for a swifter upgrade.
6.Wider Spectrum of Colors – Developers will now get a wider palette of colors. This feature will help imaging apps developers a lot.
7.Multi-process mode – This has made a separate process for web content access for an app. This will help in reducing crashes and errors in an app.
First-hand Experience on Android Oreo
Android 8.0 Oreo Review: Whether you use a Pixel or a Nexus phone, you will witness the boot time to have reduced to less than half or even lesser. Apps have performed significantly faster. Another big improvement you’ll notice is increase in battery life.
The new version has recently been launched and hence does have some bugs that are needed to be fixed. The two most common problems that have usurped the android forums are the Bluetooth connectivity issue and the annoying “App Running in Background” Notification. We are expecting these to be fixed very soon.
There might be some exploits in the new version as well; one easiest thing that you can do to make sure your device runs smoothly and your confidential information is not lost is not downloading any apps from “Unknown Sources”. This is highly recommended to check Android Oreo Compatibility.
i-Verve is one of the leading Android Mobile Application Development Companies in USA. It has made several android applications for Startup to Enterprises, the latest one being Revshield. It is an android app that records the usages of CPU, Hard disk space and memory data utilized by software and send alert email to clients providing this information.