Published: Sun, March 17, 2019
Tech | By Anita Cain

A New Google Play Services Arrives Today

A New Google Play Services Arrives Today

A final unfamiliar aspect of Android Q is that users with Google Pixel smartphones can get hold of beta version 1 this week as an over-the-air downloadable system image (no need to root a device or wait for later builds). Instead of releasing the first beta only for developers, Google is letting anyone sign up and install the beta.

The Android Q beta is officially here primarily for developers to test their applications on. Android Q will support native monochrome shooting in RAW format. If and when some Nokia phone will be included in Android Q beta is unknown.

It will also randomise a device's hardware MAC address when connecting to different Wi-Fi networks - an Android 9 setting that will become the default. That means it's likely to be unstable in places and it's not recommended that you use it on your main phone unless you're happy to put up with possible issues.

After a thorough check of the Android Q Beta settings, we couldn't find any Dark mode option.

This page details how to flash while also providing step-by-step instructions that'll get you going.

Google is also including new audio and video playback technologies, supporting AV1 video codec, Opus audio codec, and HDR10+, which should bode well for improved media streaming, especially from a developer standpoint. After you opt-in and accept the Android Beta Program Terms of Service, you can start sharing your thoughts about Android Q with us directly from your device and by joining the Android Beta Program Reddit community. Google suggests that the reason this Settings Panels feature exists is to alleviate the need to leave the app and head to Settings to "change things like NFC or mobile data in order to use the app".

Google Releases Android Q Beta for Developers, Early Adopters
Android Q beta is now available for Pixel devices

It's time to ready your apps for Android Q, developers.

Apps will be able to show key system settings in their own context, not having to point you to a specific part of Settings and then hope you do not forget to go back once you've enabled whichever option the app needed. If you'd like to access images, hit the "Images" button, if you'd like to see documents, you hit the "Documents" button... you get the idea.

Maybe the most interesting new feature is the dark theme, that can be activated only when using battery saver.

So what shiny new features does Android Q bring along with it?

Google is focusing on modernising the Android ecosystem to enhance platform-wide security and improve performance, and when Android 10 is deployed it will warn users if they run an app which targets platforms older than Android 6.0. There are also system images and OTA files available for sideloading.

So that sums up some of the new APIs heading to Android Q. Want to give Android Q a try? Right now, Android supports 32-bit and 64-bit apps, but that will soon change.

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