ANDROID 12 BEING RELEASED ON NEW PHONES IN 2022

The Android system is getting an upgrade. New phones being introduced in 2022 will have the new version

DID YOU EVEN KNOW YOU WERE USING ANDROID 11?

New technology is always interesting to watch. Android is the “operating system” for phones much like Microsoft is the Operating System for computers. And with each new upgrade, things work better, and make our life better.

Android 12 is undoubtedly the biggest refresh to Google’s operating system in years and – now that the official release has landed – more of you get to take a look at all the latest and best new features.

With Android 12, Google set to rip up the script a bit, completely changing some of they visual elements to make it look, feel and react differently to your onscreen gestures and button presses. Here’s everything you need to know about the new OS. 

WHEN WILL ANDROID 12 BE AVAILABLE?

One thing about having a new operating system for phones (and computers as well), is that everything will be outdated real quick. So, who is getting it first?

As soon as the opening keynote for Google I/O ended, the company also made the first public beta available to download, before following it up with the four more. One each month. The final, finished version of Android 12 was finally released to the public in October 2021. It started landing on consumer Pixel’s around the same time the Pixel 6 was announced. If you haven’t already, check your Pixel for system updates. 

The Pixel 6 – of course – launches with it running out of the box. So if you happen to buy one of those, you’ll be among the first consumers to get the official released version.

Here is the details of the new GOOGLE PIXEL 6

WHY IS IT CALLED ANDROID 12?

Google announced in September 2020 – via an Android Developers blog post – that the 2021 Android release will be called Android 12.

The aim here is to make things more formal, so Google is using a basic numbered approach rather than pushing the sweet treat names it used previously. However, we believe that Android 12 is also being code-named Snow Cone – the S moniker appears briefly in the status bar when it first boots up.

WHEN WILL ANDROID 12 BECOME AVAILABLE?

Reading from the reliable sources I have, production will start immediately and the first models we could see coming around March or April, and then through the rest of the year.

SO WHAT IS SO NEW TO THE ANDROID 12?

There’s a whole host of changes including a dramatic overhaul of the user interface, plus fresh customization and privacy capabilities. Here are some of the changes present:

LOCK SCREEN LOCK:

The first thing you’ll likely notice the first time you power up a phone running Android 12 is the new lock screen clock. With your phone clear of notifications a large digital clock takes up pride of place right in the center of the screen.

PIN CODE KEYS:

When you swipe to unlock the phone you’ll notice a fresh design for the PIN code keypad. The ‘buttons’ are round, large and minimal with pastel shades. These shades are governed by Material You.

NOTIFICATIONS:

Notifications have undergone something of a design overhaul too. The style of notification windows has changed, and they’re automatically grouped per app, or separated out if they’re not conversational. 

Also, there’s an easy new snooze control that you simply tap to snooze, rather than having to swipe on the notification. Then you can snooze specific notifications for a set amount of time.  

ANDROID SETTINGS CHANGE:

When you drop down quick settings and notifications from the top of the screen you’ll no longer see those little round toggles. Instead, they’ve been replaced by much larger rectangular controls, similar to those we saw in Android 11’s Power menu for controlling smarthome devices.

What’s interesting here is the colour scheme. Google has enabled the feature that allows it to pick a colour automatically based on whatever wallpaper you have, called Material You. So if your wallpaper is predominantly pink/purple, the quick settings shade will be too. Or green, if your wallpaper is green. And so on – it’s all customisable.

ENHANCED SCREEN SHOTS:

Take a screenshot and if the page is longer than you’ve captured, there’s the option to capture more. Yes, scroll capture is in Android 12.

Head to the edit/markup function and you can now type text on to your screenshots in a number of different font colours. Plus you can stick some emojis on there if you want by pressing the little sticker icon. You can resize them easily too by just pinching to zoom. 

As a side note to that, you can now easily dismiss screenshot thumbnails by swiping them off the screen. Simple. 

SHARE SHEET IMAGE EDIT:

Similar to marking up screenshots above, when you go to share an image file there’s a new ‘Edit’ option that lets you mark up pictures before sending them on. Just bring up the default share menu and tap ‘more’ where it loads your other apps and gives you the edit option next to Nearby Share below the image thumbnail.

PRIVACY DASHBOARD:

One of the major new official changes is the Privacy Dashboard. It’ll give you easy access to see what apps have accessed certain permissions. Whether that be your camera and mic or location. What’s more, when you first launch an app and it wants access to your location you can decide to have it only get access to an approximate location rather than precise. 

Android 12 has also added quick on/off toggles in the quick shade menu that disable the mic, location and camera so that nothing can access them. When the camera or mic is in use, a little green dot will appear at the top right of the screen. If you swipe down, you can see a full icon and tapping on that will tell you which app is capturing images or sound.

MATERIAL YOU: CUSTOMIZATION AND THEMING:

Theming is a major part of the Android 12’s new feature list. In the customization window you can choose to have the colours of your wallpaper determine the accent and background colours of the entire phone. It also allows you to toggle on a “themed icons” feature which transforms your app icons to colour-matched ones as well – although this mostly only seems to work with Google apps.

The system lets you choose a wallpaper and then take theme colours from the wallpaper or you can choose a “basic” complimentary colour instead. You’ll then find these themed colours beyond the home screen – it will be picked up in design elements across the phone, with some apps, like the calculator or dialer getting a color makeover to fit the theme.

MEDIA PLAYER INTERFACE:

One of the more prominent UI changes is the updated media control widget that appears in the drop-down menu you when you have music playing. Google has enlarged it, making it span almost the entire width of the screen and adjusted the layout so the controls are closer to the middle of the screen. It also takes up more space on the Lock Screen when active. 

Now, if you’re playing the music on your phone locally, you can tap the tiny little icon in the corner of the widget and this brings up a new playback location popup window. Here you can adjust the music volume or quickly pair a new device like a pair of earbuds of a Bluetooth speaker. 

APP SHORTCUTS MENU:

Another quite small tweak to the interface comes in form of the new pop-up shortcut menu that appears when you tap and hold an app icon. The menu is larger, with each command separated and taking up more space on the screen, likely to make it easier for people to use.

NEARBY SHARE FOR WI-FI PASSWORDS:

This is a potentially handy feature that lets you quickly share your WiFi network details with people in the same room as you. So while you could share your Wi-Fi using a QR code scanner before, if you look beneath that in Android 12 you now get the option that says ‘Nearby’. Tap on it, turn on Nearby sharing and then it’ll look for devices near you to share the details with.

WIDGETS:

Widgets have been completely redesigned to offer a more adjustable window and one that’s designed to fit in with the rest of the rounded, friendly interface. The conversation widget shows recent conversations, and Photos has a memories widget that can surface memories from Google Photos right on your home screen.

ONE HANDED MODE:

There’s now a new one-handed mode that you can enable. It made its first appearance in the 2nd developer preview and could make using larger-screened phones a lot easier in future. When it’s active, all you have to do is drag down from the bottom edge of the phone and it brings the app you’re viewing down halfway, to make the top of it easier to reach.

NEW PICTURE-IN-PICTURE CONTOL:

PiP has been around in Android for a while and means you can have a small floating video playing on screen even when you’re not in the video app. The new controls make it possible to enlarge the window without going full-screen.

QUICK TAP GESTURE FOR PIXEL PHONES:

There’s a double-tap gesture for Pixel phones with Android 12.

When enabled you can give a quick double-tap to the back of your phone to take a screenshot, but you can program it to do other stuff too. It can be configured for other actions, too, like to take launch Google Assistant, pause/resume media playback, open the notification shade, and open the recent apps view.

Well, there you have it: The new features for all new phones coming out next year. When reading about all these new changes, do you want to get a new phone next year or two? Let’s take a poll and see how we are planning our new phone purchases. Yay or Nay:

Published by 123photogo

I have been a photographer for many years. Worked in retail selling cameras and accessories for over 20 years. Taught many photo classes, and have even been a judge in several county fairs. Now, I want to share photo instructions and entertainment with all other photographers around the world.

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