The first developer preview (DP) of Android 12 which is the next major update for Android devices, is around the corner. Although many are still waiting for their Android 11 update but that’s past the point.
Android is the most used smartphone operating system in the entire world. Naturally, many are excited about the new version of Android.
In this article, we will talk about Android 12 best features, Android 12 release date, what Android 12 will be called and a lot more.
Android 12 code name
For those of you who are looking for the Android 12 name — we hate to break it to you, but Android 12 will be called Android 12. That’s because Google stopped assigning dessert names to Android versions starting in 2019. For the past two years, it has been Android 10, Android 11, and now Android 12.
However, last year we learned that Google is still internally assigning desert names to the latest Android versions. For instance, Android 11 (R) is internally called “Red Velvet Cake.” Based on Android 12 leaks, the next Android version i.e. Android S will be internally known as “Snow Cone.”
Android 12 release date
With every Android release, Google posts an official roadmap where we get tentative dates for the Android version’s developer preview release, beta release, and stable release.
Last year, Android 11 Developer Preview 1 arrived in February, with DP 2 and DP3 in subsequent months. We are hoping Google will follow the same timeline. In other words, you can expect Android 12 Developer Preview 1 in the next few days.
As the name suggests, developer previews are intended for developers. While they are available to general users, the builds are barely stable and come with several issues. That being said, the excitement and pleasure of getting the latest Android version first are worth the risks.
Meanwhile, you can expect Android 12 public betas in the month of May, June, and July. Like last year, the timeline might get extended due to the COVID-19, however, it will likely be a single-month delay.
After two or three Android 12 betas, Google would finally release the Android 12 stable build in August or September.
10 Biggest Android 12 Features
Here are the best Android 12 features based on Android 12 leaks and rumors. We will update this article when the first developer preview of Android 12 comes out.
1. Revamped Notification panel
Unlike Android 11, which added a big new feature called “Conversations” to the Notification panel, Android 12 appears to be focusing on design changes.
Based on the leaked Android 12 mockups, it appears that the Quick settings menu will have four large icons instead of having six smaller icons which is the default in Android 11.
Another big change we are seeing is the addition of camera and microphone access warning indicators visible in the top right corner of the Notification panel.
2. Conversation Widget
Google added a Conversation section to the notification panel in Android 11 which enabled users to never miss a message or an update from their friends or family.
Adding on to that, the conversation widget is another big Android 12 feature. The new widget will enable users to view recent messages, missed calls, and status information of a person.
3. New Privacy features
Android 12 leaks suggest that Google has added Disable Camera and Mute Microphone options in the Android 12 privacy settings.
Similar to how you can disable location access, you will now be able to restrict the device from accessing the camera and the microphone.
4. One-handed mode
Google may bring a dedicated one-handed mode with the next update. The Android 12 feature will scale down the screen, therefore allowing users to easily use the device with a single hand.
But unlike the one-handed mode in other Android-based UIs where the screen shrinks vertically and horizontally, in Android 12, the screen will only scale down vertically.
It is rumored that Android 12 will feature enhancements in the picture-in-picture mode, such as pinching to re-size and double-tapping on the floating window to make it full size.
As per the Android 12 leaks, Google may also take a page from Apple’s book and include the option to hide the PiP window.
6. App Pairs
With Android 12, Google may introduce a new split-screen feature called App Pairs. When doing a split-screen, the two apps will now be shown as a pair in the Recents menu.
“Once paired, you should be able to easily swap to using a different single app and then swap back to the pair you created,” writes 9to5Google.
7. Face-based Auto Rotate (Pixel exclusive)
9to5Google reports that Pixel devices may get a new face-based auto rotation feature in Android 12. With this, the device will use the front-facing camera to see the head orientation and will rotate the screen accordingly.
Presently, Android devices use on-device sensors and rotate the screen to match the device’s orientation. However, it is far from perfect, and often users are forced to lock rotation. Hopefully, Android 12’s face-based option will solve this issue.
8. Game mode
Google is expected to introduce a game mode in Android 12. It is being called the “GameManager” service which is described as a “service to manage game related features.”
There is not much information on the Android 12 feature for now, so we will leave it to your imagination.
9. Scrolling screenshots
There have been reports of Google working on scrolling screenshots over the past two years. We might see that finally in Android 12. A scrolling screenshot is where the device captures a normal screenshot, scrolls down and captures another one, stitches the two, and produces a long screenshot.
10. Double tap on the rear (Pixel exclusive)
The double-tap gesture feature was first spotted when Android 11 was in the works. This feature works similar to the Back Tap in iOS 14 — you can double-tap on the back of the device to perform quick actions such as waking up the Google Assistant, opening the Notification center, opening a particular app or a setting, etc.
We are hoping that the feature will finally arrive on Pixel devices with Android 12.
When will my device get Android 12?
Every time there is a new Android version in town, this question is always on everyone’s mind. And like always, the answer lies with your smartphone manufacturer. OEMs like OnePlus are known to issue new Android updates quicker, while manufacturers like Xiaomi and Samsung are known to take a lot of time.
Of course, if your smartphone vendor is none other than Google, —i.e., if you own a Google Pixel device — there is no doubt you will be the first person to revive the Android 12.
Here is the list of devices that will support Android 12 Developer Preview 1 —
- Pixel 5
- Pixel 4a 5G
- Pixel 4a
- Pixel 4
- Pixel 4 XL
- Pixel 3a
- Pixel 3a XL
- Pixel 3
- Pixel 3 XL
- Pixel 2XL (doubtful)
- Pixel 2 (doubtful)
So this was everything about the latest Android update — Android 12. Do you like these new Android 12 features? Let us know in the comments down below.