Android Q Beta 1 released for all Pixel phones; New features revealed

Judy Cobb
March 14, 2019

Much of what's in this first build is under the hood stuff, and we won't really get an idea of everything that's coming until Google's annual i/O developers event.

Foldable phone improvements. Android Q will better support the foldable handsets that are just starting to appear this year, with new multi-resume and resizable app capabilities. With the final design with Android Q relying on feedback from the beta program and users free to offer more insight and suggestions, tearing into upcoming features and improvements ahead of their respective finalization could become much more hard. If you have one of those, you can head to Google's Android Preview site here. It's a very early release and is coming out now so that app makers can get a jump on updating their software to take advantage of Q's new features. Right now, when you grant an app location access, there is no quick on/off toggle for when the app isn't being used. As expected, it's got a bunch of new features that will refine (and hopefully improve) the Android experience.but since this beta is for developers, a lot of the changes listed on the Android Developers Blog post explain all the new features and APIs for apps.

In Android Q apps can request a Dynamic Depth image, making it possible for third party apps to offer specialized blurs and bokeh options. Dynamic Depth will be an open format, so it might take off. Another helpful change: instead of apps automatically switching focus when they have an Activity in the background (like an alarm or call), appmakers and opt to send high-priority notifications first.

Device location access
Device location access

Controlling apps that access photos, videos and audio files have become easier to manage on Android Q. Also, apps are required to use the system file picker inside the Downloads folder so that users can choose which files can be access by the app.

The Wi-Fi stack in Android Q has been rebuilt to improve privacy and performance, and also improve use cases like managing IoT devices and suggesting internet connections without requiring the location permission. This has been a problem because advertisers would use hardware IDs like your phones IMEI or MAC address to target ads. Google has a beta program that lets you update via a simple OTA. Additionally, a new Settings Panel function can be brought up to show certain settings that may be needed by a specific app (e.g., the Settings Pannel for Chrome could show settings for Wi-Fi, mobile data, and airplane mode).

Now for the important question...

GOP plan would limit power to declare emergency
It's long looked like the Republican-run Senate would join the Democratic-led House in voting to block Trump's declaration. By late Tuesday, there were indications that GOP opposition to Trump's emergency along the Mexican border was softening.

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