Google showcased the Android 7.1 Nougat update at the October 4th event along with the new Pixel smartphones. This new version comes with some new features which are exclusive Pixel smartphones only. However, there were a lot of speculations about these features coming to other Nexus devices or not. And the answer is a big no. Most of the new features are indeed exclusive to the Pixel smartphones. But it was reported that the company would be pushing the Nougat 7.1 update other smartphones as well.
And now it officially confirmed that the new Android 7.1 Nougat would be pushed to other smartphones as well. Also, the developer previews for the same will be coming soon to some of the select Nexus smartphones, with the final built releasing by December. The select smartphones to receive this developer preview are Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, and the Pixel C tablet. Google has also outlined the set of new features to hit these devices with the new update.
Developers will be able to make use of the new features like –
App shortcuts API — lets you surface key actions directly in the launcher and take your users deep into your app instantly. You can create up to 5 shortcuts, either statically or dynamically.
Circular app icons support — lets you provide great-looking rounded icon resources that match the look of Pixel and other launchers.
Enhanced live wallpaper metadata — lets you provide metadata about your live wallpapers to any picker displaying the wallpapers as a preview. You can show existing metadata such as
, description, and author, as well as a new context URL and title to link to more information.
Image keyboard support — expands the types of content that users can enter from their keyboards, letting them express themselves through custom stickers, animated gifs, and more. Apps can tell the keyboard what types of content they accept, and keyboards can deliver all of the images and other content that they offer to the user. For broad compatibility, this API will also be available in the support library.
Storage Manager Intent — lets an app take the user directly to a new Settings screen to clear unused files and free up storage space on the device.
As mentioned earlier, the first Nexus devices to receive the Developer preview are the Nexus 5S, Nexus 6P, and the Pixel C tablet. The final release of the Android 7.1.x platform which is due for December release, updates will be pushed to the full lineup of supported devices – Nexus 6, 5X, 6P, 9, Player, Pixel C, supported Android One devices, and the Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones. It is good to see that the company is pushing the update to the existing Nexus devices as well.
But do make a note that most of the new features like the Google Assistant integration, etc. will be exclusive to the Pixel smartphones. So maybe if you are in the market for that, then you might want to check out the new Pixel smartphones. These smartphones are available in two sizes, and the pre-orders for the same will start from October 13th in India and the smartphones will be available to purchase starting the month of November. Stay tuned for more info on these devices.