Android 7.0 Nougat has arrived and it will roll out to all Google Nexus devices, not to mention the Pixel C, over the next couple of weeks.
Google will buck its own trend this year and will release the latest version of Android before the release of any new hardware. In the past years, Google had always launched its newer versions of Android operating system alongside new Nexus devices but, clearly, this year won’t be like the last one.
This was also the first time Google took into consideration name suggestions from the general public.
Google, through Snapchat, revealed that the company had opened up an Android naming process to the public and Nougat came out as the most popular choice, beating other potential names such as Nutter Butter, Nutella, Nerds and Necco Wafer.
Android 7.0 Nougat will come as an over the air update for Google devices and will roll out in scheduled phases starting from today.
Google Nexus devices such as Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X will get preferential treatment as far as the new Android Nougat update is concerned but other Nexus 6 smartphones along with Nexus 9 tablets, and Pixel C tablet, will also get Android Nougat update in the coming weeks.
Google will also release Android Nougat for its Nexus Player set-top box. And to complete the whole set of devices, Google will also make Android Nougat available as an update to the General Mobile 4G Android One smartphone.
Android One is a rebooted Google Project that is supposed to bring low-priced smartphones to developing markets such that of India. Google has stated before that it intends to bring cheap smartphones to huge emerging markets such that of India. The company is aiming for a smartphone device that would cost around $30-$50 to end users.
Regardless, Google has stated in clear terms that the company will bring its best online services to the Indian market since the company expected India to have more than a billion smartphone users in the next couple of decades.
With that said, if you have been using Android 7.0 developer open beta version then you won’t be able to perceive a ton of differences as a result of the update.
Android Nougat’s “very stable version” was rolled out by Google back in May and thousands of users signed up for the beta software in order to get a hands-on preview of Google then upcoming Android operating system.
To be fair to Google, the beta software did serve as a sturdy template for the final version which will start rolling out to Google devices today.
What About Android Nougat New Features
The rumor mill has ensured that the new features of Android Nougat won’t come as a shock to anyone at this point.
However, it never hurts to review those new features as the new Android operating system rolls out to a wider percentage of the Android smartphone market.
If we were to rank the new features on the basis of their individual impact, then in all possibility the biggest changes were the ones made to the new notifications area and the multi-tasking mode.
These two features are arguably the most significant ones as far as user interface is concerned.
The new notification area will now show notifications which will be grouped by the app in the notifications shade.
Users will be able to pull down on any app’s notifications and alerts in order to get the full list of notifications.
Users will also be able to reply to alerts and app notifications directly from the new notifications area.
This is a cool new feature which iOS had implemented a long time ago before Android.
The second biggest new feature is the multi-window multitasking mode.
As the name suggests, this feature will allow users to open up and run two applications side by side. The new multitasking feature is also one of those features that was implemented much earlier on devices such as the iPad.
The iPad put into action the multitasking feature the day it rolled out iOS 9.
However, the multitasking mode won’t be of much use to smartphone users. The feature’s primary beneficiaries will likely be tablet users rather than smartphone users.
Google devices like Pixel C will be the ones which will take full advantage of the multi-tasking mode.
Though that does not mean that the multitasking feature won’t work on smartphones. Many media outlets have found the multitasking feature surprisingly well suited to smaller smartphone screens.
Of course, the tablet experience is expected to be much better than the smartphone as far as multi-tasking mode is concerned.
Android Nougat will also bring a number of smaller tweaks that will make it easier for the users to navigate around the OS.
The new tweaks will allow users to personalize their Android experience and will enhance user interaction through simple changes to the already very intuitive UI.
For example, Android Nougat quick settings menu will now be available to users for customization.
Users will be able to include things that they access the most in their quick settings menu. A double tap on the multitasking button would switch the screen between the two most recent apps the users have used.
The Doze mode, which is essentially a battery-saving feature released by Google for Android Marshmallow last year, has also seen some improvements.
Before Android Nougat, the Doze mode would put your smartphone into a low energy consumption mode when the display was switched off and the smartphone wasn’t shifting its position.
But now because of the new tweaks the Doze mode will be smart enough to put your smartphone into a low-power mode even when the smartphone is moving around i.e while the smartphone lies in your pocket, or in your backpack, as you move.
Software update system has also seen some major changes. Of course, these changes won’t affect how user interact with their smartphones but that does not make these tweaks any less useful.
Android Nougat will manage software updates a bit differently than the previous versions of Android operating system.
Now, users who are running a new Android device, with Android Nougat installed on it, will be able to continue the use of their smartphone while Android Nougat updates their device in the background.
In other words, Android Nougat will install software updates without locking up your phone. The only time the new Android operating system will present you with a new notification dialog will be when it wants you to reboot the smartphone in order to finish the process of updating the operating system.
Before, users had to wait for quite some time while their phone received the necessary software updates.
It has also been rumored that from this point onwards, Google will introduce this feature on all devices that will have the new Android Nougat installed on them. Sadly, all indications are that Google will not offer this new feature on older Android devices.
As a result of this on-the-go update feature, future Nexus devices will be able to experience much faster software updates.
But not all is doom and gloom for current Nexus devices as current Android devices will at least get faster software updates albeit in the old way where the device must reboot and not be used unless and until the updates have finished the installation process.
Moreover, Android Nougat will also bring a total of 72 new emoji to current Android users. Users will be able to express themselves much more clearly with this many extra emoji icons at their disposal with the press of a single button.
If you haven’t been impressed so far then don’t lose hope as there are a lot more new features to be discovered in Android Nougat.
But it is true that the features we have listed above are likely to be the ones that most Android users will want to use as soon as Android Nougat update hits their smartphones.
Also, most of the updates are expected to be “under the hood” updates and you must have the latest Google devices if you want to experience the whole of Android Nougat.
Google has been criticized in the past for not rolling out its latest Android versions to older devices like Apple which releases the latest iOS version for its older devices too.
As mentioned before, it may take a significant period of time before everyone gets to experience the new Android Nougat operating system because Google, in its typical nonchalant fashion, will roll out the new Android Nougat update “in the coming weeks.”