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This article was published on March 21, 2017


Android O preview is now available (if you’re brave enough to flash)

Android O preview is now available (if you’re brave enough to flash)
Napier Lopez
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Napier Lopez

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Napier Lopez is a writer based in New York City. He's interested in all things tech, science, and photography related, and likes to yo-yo in Napier Lopez is a writer based in New York City. He's interested in all things tech, science, and photography related, and likes to yo-yo in his free time. Follow him on Twitter.

It seems like just yesterday we were trying to pick a name for Android Nougat (remember when we all hoped it would be Nutella?), but Google has already moved on to its next dessert: Android O is now available for developers.

There isn’t too much to report about the build at the moment, as it mainly seems to include background changes for developers. Still, there are a few updates worth noting:

  • The most interesting of these is probably the picture-in-picture in mode, which lets you watch videos while using other apps.
  • There’s now a wide color gamut option for developers to better take advantage of the crazy good screens on our phones, including AdobeRGB, Pro Photo RGB, DCI-P3, and more.
  • Users can now snooze notifications so they reappear at a later time.
  • Adaptive icons that can change shapes depending on the device (circle vs squircle, for instance), and even support visual effects for Android animations.
  • Apps will be able to pin shortcuts for specific actions. E.g. an icon for navigating directly to your job that you can pin on your home screen.

The full list of changes is available here.

Unlike last year, when it introduced the Android Beta Program, Google isn’t making Android O available to the wider public initially (the public beta should arrive in May or June). The OS is slated to have 4 developer previews.

If you want to install it, you have to manually flash it. You also need to be using one of a few supported devices, which are the Nexus 5x, Nexus 6P, Nexus Player, Pixel C, Pixel, and Pixel XL.

The public beta is currently due to arrive in May, and the final release of O in Q3 (likely in time for some new Pixel phones). In the meantime, if you’re knowledgeable or adventurous enough to flash the device, head on over to Google Developer page at the source link below.

But back to the important stuff. What’s O going to be called? I vote Oreo.

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