Android Q Features

Filed Under: Android

Finally, Android Q Beta 1 has been released and we are very eager to share what it has in store for everyone. Let’s look at the different features and some APIs as well.

Android Q Features

1. Security Enhancements – Biometrics

Android Q further enhances biometric prompts. You can now provide a hint that tells the system not to require user confirmation after the user has authenticated using an implicit biometric modal.
This way the user need not confirm low-risk actions every time once you’ve passed setRequireConfirmation() as false.
If your biometric authentication doesn’t work you can provide the user with a fallback using setAllowDeviceCredential() which enables access to use device PIN/Password/Screen Lock to unlock.

2. Privacy Protections – More user control to location permissions

Earlier the user had only two choices. To allow or deny permissions.
But with Android Q they can be given a third option to allow only when the application is visible.

Android Q Location Permission

Android Q Location Permission

Furthermore, more privacy features such as giving user access some control over applications that use shared files is introduced.
Prevention of applications from launching activities automatically from the background is also underway.

3. Dark Mode

Android Q allows us to enable Dark Mode across the device. In Beta 1, in order to do this, you need to enable Battery Saver Mode.

4. Faster Sharing Options

Android Q gets rid of the lag and the large list of applications to share your content with. Android Q introduces sharing shortcuts that lets us share our contents quickly by jumping into the destination app content.
Developers can publish share targets that launch a specific activity in their apps with content attached.
Since these are not dynamically loaded sharing would become faster.

Android Q Sharing Shortcuts

Android Q Sharing Shortcuts – From Android Docs

5. New Battery Indicator

Android Q brings a new way to display the battery. It shows like “Until 12:00 PM“.

6. Settings Panel for App

Android Q brings an in-app Settings Panel in the context of your App. This way you can change settings related to your current app.

Android Q Settings Panel

Android Q Settings Panel

7. Support for Foldable Screens

Android Q would be supporting foldable screen devices. Hence multiple applications that are opened side by side would have their onResume triggered simultaneously.

Android Q Foldable Screens

Android Q Foldable Screens

8. Connectivity Features

Android Q adds support for peer-to-peer connections.

Improved Wifi Performance – In Android Q, you can now request adaptive Wi-Fi in Android Q by enabling high performance and low latency modes.
To use the new performance modes, call WifiManager.WifiLock.createWifiLock() with WIFI_MODE_FULL_LOW_LATENCY or WIFI_MODE_FULL_HIGH_PERF.

Wifi Easy Connect – Android Q makes wifi sharing with peers easier using QR codes or Bluetooth or NFC.

9. New Color Themes

You can now set consistent colors throughout the application from the Developer Options in the Settings Application.

10. Improved Camera Features, Audio And Video

Android Q further enhances the Monochrome Camera Support that was introduced in Android Pie with:

  • Y8 stream format support for improving memory efficiency.
  • Support for monochrome raw DNG capture.
  • Introduction of MONO and NIR CFA enumerations to distinguish between a regular monochrome camera and near-infrared cameras.

Dynamic Depth Fields
You can now simulate depth effect in your camera photos using the DDF format.
This format applies a narrow depth effect in the photo. You can store the original image separately from this post-processing DDF format pics.

Introducing New Audio and Video Codecs – Android Q introduces a new Codec – AV1.
This allows media providers to stream high-quality video content to Android devices using less bandwidth.

11. Improved ART Performance

Android Q improves the ART runtime which makes the application launch and runs faster.

12. Application Roles

Roles is something new that’s introduced with Android Q. Once you define a role for your application, the Android OS grants elevated access to system functions.

Following are some of the Roles that you need to define in your application:

  • ROLE_BROWSER
  • ROLE_DIALER
  • ROLE_SMS
  • ROLE_HOME
  • ROLE_MUSIC
  • ROLE_GALLERY

We’ll discuss Roles at length in a separate tutorial.

13. Neural Networks API 1.2

The NNAPI1.2 would roll out with Android Q and it has a lot of performance optimizations over the previous API. Thus, you can use and accelerate more models for Object Detection etc using Tensor Flow.

Summary

Android Q has brought a lot of cool features. Dark mode is my favorite one and it will save a lot of battery life too. Settings panel for App is really nice and we won’t have to go to Settings app just to change some app settings. Finally, Android is starting to support foldable screens. Please let me know your favorite Android Q feature or if I missed any important feature.

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