Google has rolled out the first Android 11 Developer preview earlier than expected. This is the first draft strictly meant for developers, so nothing is carved in stone just yet and features will come and go for several months before Android 11 stable build rolls out towards the end of the year.
Google promises several interesting changes compared to Android 10 like more APIs to leverage advancements in 5G connectivity, support for new pinhole and waterfall screens, better machine learning, a better experience for conversations and messaging, and bigger privacy push.
Android 11 vs Android 10: What has changed?
Here are a few major changes in Android 11:
Conversations in the notification shade
Android 11 is prioritizing seamless conversations. Your active message notifications will show up above other notifications. This makes sense since every app wants a piece of the notification shade and things are getting really cluttered. This way you can focus better on active conversations.
Related: Android 10 Quick Review
Chat bubbles will let you keep several active conversations on your home screen. This should work like FB messenger bubbles, but other messaging apps in the Google Play store will be able to efficiently implement them.
To activate bubbles, all you need to do is long-press on the message notification and select the option to open in a bubble.
Pin Apps in the Android Share menu
Android 11 has an option to pin apps you frequently share with to the top of the list. The option was there in Android 10 Beta but was revoked in the final version. Hope this time it’s here to stay.
One time permissions
You can now give apps permission for just one time. This way you can give apps you don’t fully trust permission to use your camera, or your location just this one time instead of lifetime access. And this is surely a big step forward for better user privacy.
Native Screen Recording
Custom skins from most Android manufacturers already have native screen recording feature, and the stock Android 11 will now have one as well.
The feature was a part of Android 10 beta but was later pulled. On Android 11, screen recording can be accessed via quick settings tile.
Check what codecs your headphones support
Unlike on Android 10, the Bluetooth Audio Codec selection in Android 11 developer options greys out codecs that aren’t supported. The Android 10 has the option as well, but unsupported codecs aren’t greyed out. You can also switch between supported codecs as headphones don’t always use the best option by default.
Option to check the display refresh rate
With high refresh rate screens increasingly becoming common, Google has added an option to show refresh rate under developer settings. This is great since you won’t have to swift through shady apps to check if your phone’s screen is actually refreshing as advertised.
Well, there are numerous other changes as well:
- Android 11 will have provision to mute disruptive notifications when youa re recording videos.
- There will be native reverse wireless charging support and new motion sense gestures.
- Bluetooth will not shutdown when you turn on Airplane mode and are streaming audio.
- Scope storage will have exeptions for older APIs and file managers.
- 12 new modules added to Project mainline (bringing the total to 20), making Android easier to upgrade.
- Dark mode can be scheduled to turn on from sunset to sunrise or during a custom time interval.
Android 11 Features
There will be 3 Android 11 developer previews and 3 Android 11 Betas before we get to the final versions. Through this journey, features will be added and retracted and we will keep updating the article with new features as they surface. Developers will have to adapt their apps to Android 11 until 2021.