The Google I/O 2019 event brought some major improvements in Google Search, Google Assistant, and the launch of products like Nest Hub Max and Pixel 3a smartphones.
But the most important announcement Android fans have been waiting for are the new features in Android Q Beta 3. The latest version includes a system-wide Dark Mode, improved Smart Reply and Live Captions — a new feature that can turn any piece of audio into text.
There are also a bunch of privacy and security features along with parental controls and support for foldable devices. In this article, we will discuss all the features – new and old; basically everything we know about Google’s latest dessert so far.
Android 10 Name
As we know, all new Android versions are named after desserts every year but we never know what Google would pick. So keeping Android Q in mind, we have listed down all possible dessert names for the latest version:
- Android Quesito (ke-see-toe)
- Android Quindim
- Android Quiche
- Android Qottab (Ghottab)
- Android Quince (kwins)
- Android Queen of Puddings
- Android Quarabiya (Kurabiye)
- Android Queijadas
Finding dessert names starting with Q is easy as there aren’t many of them. As you can see from the list above, many of them are fruits. Given the scarcity of good names this time, Google might not pick a dessert name for Android 10 at all this time. Nevertheless, they sound equally good and Android Quince is my personal favorite just because it’s the easiest to pronounce.
Best Android Q Features
The third beta for Android Q has arrived and is now available for Pixel devices. Here are the major features and changes in the latest version of Android Q that you should definitely check out:
The long-awaited system-wide dark mode in Android is here. I am not sure why Google chose to call it the “Dark Theme” instead of “dark mode,” given that there isn’t support for other themes, at least for now.
Nevertheless, seeing a native dark mode in Android 10 would please many of us. To activate the Dark Theme in Android Q, pull down the Quick Settings menu, and toggle a button to turn the UI from white to black.
And this time, we get the true black, not the “very dark gray” one we’ve seen other times. Google says turning on the dark mode will save battery life and this feature can also be activated by turning on the battery saver on Android 10 Q.
The Smart Reply feature, which made its debut with Android Pie, has been upgraded in Android Q. It will work with every Android messaging app and make it easier to reply from the notification panel.
Google has added smart suggestions to the feature, which will predict texts as well as emojis. Moreover, there is a “suggested actions” feature too which predicts the next steps you’ll take.
For instance, Google Maps will open automatically to navigate to an address mentioned in the chat.
Live Caption is one of the most impressive features for me in Android Q Beta 3. It can perform a real-time transcription of audio in any video or audio.
And here’s the best part — Live Caption doesn’t require an internet connection to work. It uses local machine learning, so there is no communication with the cloud.
Once you enable this feature from Android’s accessibility settings, a new button will appear beneath the volume rocker. Using this option, you can add captions to any video. Moreover, the captions can be placed anywhere on the screen and enlarged with a double tap.
Adding more to its Digital Wellbeing initiative, Google has added Focus Mode to Android Q. Using Focus Mode, you can turn off distracting apps like social media platforms, messaging apps or any other app you don’t want to use for a certain period.
Bubbles feature for multitasking
Google has introduced a new way of multitasking and interacting with apps on Android 10 through a new feature called Bubbles. This feature arrived with Android Q Beta 2. It lets you minimize any app into a little circle that floats on your screen above all other apps.
Tapping on a bubble reveals another small UI where users can interact with the app. As you can see in the image, you can reply to texts or browse on multiple windows using Bubbles.
Support for Foldable devices
Android Q will come with support for the latest foldable phone form factor. Much like Samsung’s ‘Screen Continuity’ feature — Android 10 will provide seamless switching between smaller and bigger displays of foldable phones and preserve the state of app in the transition.
Google has also improved the split-screen mode in Android 10 by introducing a new feature called “Multi-resume” to run multiple apps on the same screen.
Dynamic depth effect in photos
With Android Q, you can adjust the depth effects in photos by allowing apps to request a JPEG + Dynamic Depth image. This will let you use apps to add different kinds of blur effects, bokeh options, and create 3D as well as AR supported images.
Built-in Screen Recorder
We might also see a built-in screen recorder tool just like iOS in Android 10. Even though the screen recorder tool has been made official in the last three Beta versions, there are still chances of seeing it as XDA Developers uncovered the incomplete codes for this feature.
Android Q Devices List
Since Android 10 is the newest version of Android OS, it is obvious that it will be available on a lesser number of devices at first. However, Google plans to launch Android Q on a larger number of devices as compared to previous years.
This fact can be confirmed by the trend observed in recent years where every time, the latest version of Android is released on more number of devices. So in case you are planning to buy a new phone, or you wish to know which smartphones would receive Android Q, here are the devices you should look out for:
- Pixel phones
- Pixel and Pixel XL
- Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL
- Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL
- Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10E
- Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+
- Galaxy Note 9
- OnePlus 6, OnePlus 6T
- OnePlus 7, OnePlus Pro
At present, Android Q Beta is available for 21 devices from 13 brands. The beta program for Android 10 will comprise six beta phases, which will last until Quarter 3 of 2019 (preferably in August 2019) when Android Q will be available to all.