Google introduced the first-ever Beta version of Android 12 to kickstart its Google IO 2021. Bringing the much anticipated OS update one step closer to reality, Google showcased all the new features that the latest Android version will bring to smartphones soon.
These features pan out across the elements of the operating system, including its design, customisation options, privacy controls as well as system improvements. With the Android 12, Google has more or less attempted to renew the entire smartphone experience, and it promises to keep introducing more such features over time.
Other than what’s new, Google shared some information upon the expected availability of the Android 12 on smartphones. It also hinted at the devices that will support the latest Android version going forward.
To better understand these timelines and features, here is a roundup of all that we know about the Android 12 to date.
Android 12 supported devices
Android 12 Beta 1 has officially been rolled out to devices from various OEMs, including OnePlus, Xiaomi, Oppo and others. The rollout is meant as a way for interested users to try pre-release versions of Android and test-drive its new features.
Once the feedback provided from this Beta rollout helps Google identify and fix issues, it will roll out the step-up versions of the Android 12 OS. Google says that enrolled devices will automatically receive updates for the latest beta version of Android.
Those interested in experiencing the new OS can do so by downloading the Beta version from the Android Beta program. As of now, the following devices support Android 12 Beta 1 –
- Asus Zenfone 8
- Google Pixel – all models from Pixel 3 to Pixel 5
- OnePlus 9, OnePlus 9 Pro
- Oppo Find X3 Pro
- Realme GT 5G (Only in China)
- TCL 20 Pro 5G
- Tecno Camon 17
- Vivo iQOO 7 Legend
- Xiaomi Mi 11, Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra, Mi 11i, and Mi 11X Pro
- ZTE Axon 30 Ultra 5G (Only in China)
Android 12 rollout timelines for other devices
Google is following its usual rollout timeline for the new Android version. As is seen every year, the new Android OS has been introduced at Google’s IO event, with its first Beta version being rolled out at the developers’ conference.
This gives us a fairly good assumption that Google will be following the annual timeline for the release of a stable version of Android 12. This means we can expect a second Beta version for the Android 12 around July.
Subsequently, a final or a stable version of Android 12 can be expected towards the end of August or in September, possibly alongside the launch of the new Pixel lineup of phones. Other OEMs are then expected to bring in the stable version on their makes out-of-the-box.
Android 12 top features
Google has reworked the design on the Android 12 to bring about a stark contrast from what Android had to offer to date, so much so that the company calls it “the biggest design change in Android’s history.”
The new OS by Google comes with more customisation options than ever before. This includes a smart colour palette that uses colour extraction to automatically determine dominant colours on the user’s set wallpaper and change the OS’ theme accordingly.
Android 12 also gets redesigned widgets, smoother motions and animations, as well as better accessibility options, including an improved Quick Settings panel. The idea is to make the entire experience more intuitive and efficient for the user.
Google also claims that the Android 12 will make devices faster and more responsive with better power efficiency, also promising longer battery life. This has been achieved by some under-the-hood improvements, including reducing the CPU time needed for core system services by up to 22 per cent and reducing the use of big cores by the system server by up to 15 per cent.
New and improved privacy features are another big plus on Android 12. There is a new Privacy Dashboard offering a single view into permissions settings as well as what data is being accessed, how often and by which apps. Users will also be able to revoke app permissions from the dashboard easily.
A new indicator to the top right of the status bar will tell users when apps are accessing their microphone or camera. Two new toggles in Quick Settings will also help remove app access to these sensors for the entire system.