Android 12: Date of Publication, Functionality, Rumors, Leaks, and More

Google has not yet released their next operating system for smartphones, but it’s expected an announcement will be made soon.

Google is probably close to launching the first Android 12 beta developer, but we don’t really know anything about the forthcoming update so far. That said, some screenshots have leaked, and to make some informed guesses, we can use Google’s past launches as a guide. Below is what we know at present, and what we believe we know at present, about Android 12.

When’s Android 12 Going to Be Released?

Any day now, a developer beta may be released and Google normally accompanies the developer beta with a public beta a few months later. A formal release then occurs around August.

The period of development for each new version of Android is long, with a beta developer normally released early in the year. On Feb. 19 2020, the first developer preview of Android 11 was launched by Google. If the same timing is adopted by Google, we might see Android 12 very shortly.

Public beta, which allows someone with a comaptible smartphone like a Google Pixel or OnePlus phone to sign up and help Google test the new Android update. An official release happens toward the end of the American summer after developers have had time to get their apps ready for new APIs, and Google has time to finalize the build and get rid of any lingering bugs. Last year, Android 11 released on Sept. 8th.

What Will This New Version Be Named?

As Google has left behind its public dessert naming scheme, numbers are the future, so we expect Android 12 to be the name of this upcoming Android version.

Google revealed with the introduction of Android 10 in 2019 that it was no longer going to use dessert names for the annual release of an Android update. Google launched Android 11 last year. So, we assume, that brings the release of this year on Android 12.

That said, Google also uses sweets for potential updates as its internal code names, and thanks to XDA Developers, who have a lot of knowledge about this pending OS update, we have a decent idea that it is named Snow Cone internally.

Which New Features Will Be Added To The Android 12 Version?

As we get nearer to the first developer preview, leaks are beginning to become more regular. One hand mode, Material NEXT, enhanced multitasking, as well as a dedicated game mode are rumoured.

Until the developer beta is available, Google generally does a pretty good job of keeping new Android features under wraps. With very little data leaked on what’s in Android 12, this year is no different.

That said, some screenshots reportedly from documents shared with Google’s partners were recently released by XDA Developers. These screenshots and information is for Google’s partners and is to let them know what’s new in Android 12 so that they can start their planning.

Googles Partners

Looking at the screenshots, you can see that the widgets look entirely new, close to what widgets look like on iOS 14. There is also a new colour coded privacy mark that lights up the signal meter anytime an app has been or is viewed by the device’s microphone and camera.

Again, this is similar to the iOS feature when an app has recently accessed or is currently using your microphone and camera, which puts a coloured dot on the screen.

XDA Developers have posted even more detail about Android 12 over the last couple of days. There’s a new direction that the creators of Android’s Material Design should adopt.

It’s called Material NEXT, at least internally, according to XDA Developers, and it seems to allow hardware partners to customize the applications to suit their brand on top of the material design.

For one-handed use, Android actually has a few different options, but manufacturers the handset currently decide how it is applied. With Android 12, XDA has found evidence of a new one handed mode that can be integrated into its smartphones by hardware partners.

It’s uncertain how it’s going to work, but XDA says that the window will narrow to 40 percent of its height with a gesture when it’s activated, taking buttons and text closer to the thumb at the top of the screen. Since Apple released larger iPhone versions that do something similar, iPhone users have had a Reachability feature.

XDA also notes that proof of a new GameManagerClient on Android 12 has been discovered this is a dedicated gaming mode and is another fascinating feature that is rumored to appear on Android 12.. The service looks like it can help people who like to play on their mobile devices do things like do not disturb trigger, adjust window brightness, and when a game is opened, disable auto-rotate.

And lastly,  Android 12 also seems to have a new multitasking workflow split-screen, which could help improve efficiency. The new method includes the development of app pairs, as you can do on Samsung Galaxy phones right now, to launch two applications that you often use in split-screen mode at the same time. This report is from 9to5Google. You can have Gmail and Google Docs setup as a pair, for example.

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