Google Releases Android 11 Developer Preview Earlier Than Expected

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Normally, Google releases the preview of the upcoming version of Android in March, but this time, the tech giant releases the Android 11 developer preview earlier than ever for Pixel phones. This is the first developer preview of Android 11 and it is now available to download and test for the developers.

Talking about features, it brings enhancements for foldable phones and screen types, new camera capabilities, privacy-centric tools, convenient app behaviour, 5G-related improvements, and a lot more. In addition to releasing the first Android 11 developer preview, the tech giant also announces the rollout timeline for upcoming builds all the way to its stable release.

Google says that system images, as well as GSI files for the first Android 11 Developer Preview, are now available to download for the Pixel 4, Pixel 3a, Pixel 3, and Pixel 2. Google mentioned that this developer preview is only for developers and not suitable to use for regular users. However, it stated that the beta testing will soon be opened to regular Android users on an invitational basis, and enrolments for the same will open soon.

Android 11 Release Schedule

Here’s the full release timeline for Android 11 builds revealed by Google:

  • Android 11 Developer Preview 1: February
  • Android 11 Developer Preview 2: March
  • Android 11 Developer Preview 3: April
  • Android 11 Beta 1: May
  • Android 11 Beta 2: June
  • Android 11 Beta 3: Q3 2020
  • Android 11 final build: Q3 2020

Android 11: What’s New

As mentioned above, Android 11 brings a lot of improvements and features on Android. It brings support for a wider range of screen types such as waterfall and hole-punch. Developers can now optimise their apps to make them usable in curved regions. It also brings a dedicated conversations section in the notifications shade where users can find their ongoing conversations across all apps.

One of the best features that come with the Android 11 is the ability to insert images via copy/paste to notification inline replies. Users can copy images from Chrome and paste it via Gboard into their quick replies starting with the first Android 11 Developer Preview. It also comes with a Bubbles API on notifications, which brings chat bubbles to the table so that users can easily keep conversations in view while multi-tasking.

Another meaningful feature that comes with Android 11 is that apps can now use new APIs to mute ringtones and vibrations for alarms or notifications while using the phone’s camera. In the camera department, Android 11 brings notable changes in Bokeh mode enhancements, a native image decoder, and the ability to decode and render image animations from HEIF files have also arrived.

In the connectivity options, Android 11 comes with call screening improvements, Wi-Fi API enhancements, and more scope for 5G-related improvements. Google mentioned that it has added a new API to let users check whether a connection is unmetered so that the quality of streaming content and resolution can be increased, although it will use more data.

Last but not least, Android 11 brings a significant number of features for privacy and security. introduces a new one-time permission feature that lets users grant temporary permissions to apps for accessing their location, mic, or camera. It also expands biometrics compatibility and adds platform support for securely storing and retrieving verifiable IDs like driving license and more such documents.

In addition to all these features, there are thousands of bug fixes done that were reported by developers for the Android 10. You can read the complete list of changes and fixes that are done with Android 11 on the official Android Developer Blog.

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