Published: Fri, March 09, 2018
Sci-tech | By Brandy Patterson

Google Lens rolls out to all Android users with Photos

Google Lens rolls out to all Android users with Photos

It's March, and that means it's time for Google to release its first look at the next version of Android.

Those phones got Oreo, but when P comes out in August or September they will be nearly three years old, so what Google is doing is at least consistent with its own policy. Also missing are the Pixel C tablet and Nexus Player.

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For image processing, Android P adds support for HDR VP9 Profile 2, so users can deliver HDR-enabled movies to YouTube, Play Movies and other sources on HDR-capable devices.

Google has released the developer preview of its latest version of Android - Android P. The developers-only preview implies that regular users will not be able to download as yet. The company's shared a ton of technical details about the OS in a blog post, and is planning to reveal more user-facing additions at its annual Google I/O conference in May this year. According to the official Developer Preview notes, "Android P offers support for the latest edge-to-edge screens with display cutout for camera and speaker". The same goes for a new Multi-Camera API that's for devices with dual rear-facing cameras or dual front-facing cameras.

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Here're some biggest changes in Android P. Speaking of which, the app drawer also looks different, although I'm not sure if this is due to Android P being as new as it is or not. As some screenshots show, messaging apps can include multiple lines from a conversation along with Google's smart replies in the notification shade, making responses quicker while also including more conversational context.

Animation - Android P introduces a new AnimatedImageDrawable class for drawing and displaying GIF and WebP animated images. The first developer preview is apparently pretty simple and the next preview is expected to arrive only by May this year. This new feature can measure the distance to nearby Wi-Fi points without having to connect with them. A factory spec system image of the Pixel device it was installed on needs to be downloaded from the Factory Images for Nexus and Pixel Devices page. While buying a phone from Google lets you sidestep Android's fragmented update mess, Google still can't compete with Apple's end-to-end control.

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