Today, on the first day of the Google I/O 2021 developer conference, Google has unveiled a new version of its operating system — Android 12.
The developers call the new design Material You. According to Samir Samat, vice president of product management for Android and Google Play, this is “the biggest design change in the history of Android.”
Without exaggeration, Android 12 has really changed. It is based on three principles: “More personal”, “Private and protected” and “Better together”. The company has redesigned almost every element of the Android user interface to make it more customizable. So, when you install new wallpapers, almost every element of the OS adjusts to them — for example, the notification shade and volume controls, so that they match the dominant and additional colors on the display.
We also changed the system animation, the lock screen, set up the quick settings menu, and implemented a new widget system. The buttons have become bigger and brighter, there are more animations, and the Privacy Dashboard has appeared, where you can see what permissions applications have received and when.
At the same time, Google claims that Android has become more efficient. Smartphones will respond faster and use up battery power better thanks to more optimized CPU usage.
As with iOS 14, you’ll also see small indicators at the top of the screen when the app accesses your phone’s camera, microphone, or both. You can block access for apps at any time. Also, Android 12 will allow you to provide apps with only your approximate location.
Finally, Android 12 has added support for the Digital Car Key feature. This is a digital key that allows you to use your smartphone to open or lock the car. At first, the new feature will only work with BMW cars.
Google is reporting that more features will be coming to Android 12 later this year as we approach the public release of the update.
The first public beta version of Android 12 Beta 1 is available for download today. According to tradition, it will be received by smartphones of the Pixel series, starting with the Pixel 3 model. In addition, the beta version can be tested on devices of 11 manufacturers, including Google, Asus, OnePlus, OPPO, and Xiaomi.