Google Officially Debuts Android Oreo During the Eclipse

August 22, 2017 - 3 minutes read

This afternoon, while everyone was looking skyward to catch a glimpse at that solar eclipse (including the president, who couldn’t resist the urge to look up without his special glasses on), Google officially unveiled the eighth version of Android. Called Android Oreo, the updated OS transitioned today from its developer preview to the Android Open Source Project. According to Google, it will roll out on Nexus and Pixel devices “soon,” and it will be available on other devices that run Android before the year’s end. While Android app developers have to acknowledge that a lot of Oreo’s new features a ripped from iOS, the OS has a lot of upgrades users are going to really appreciate.

Android app developers will recognize the new bells and whistles from Google I/O. Perhaps the biggest lift from iOS is Oreo’s notifications, which takes the tried-and-true system of small dots on app icons to indicate when an update is ready or the app otherwise has something to notify you about. The Android app developer community is excited about the new picture-in-picture mode, which has been around on iPads (but not iPhones) since iOS 9. With this mode, users can watch a minimized video, as well as move it around the screen, while handling other business on their Android device. The fact that this capability will be available on phones actually puts Oreo ahead of iOS on this feature.

Oreo also improves upon the autofill tool available on Apple devices by integrating it across all apps on the device, so there is no more filling out the same tedious information in app after app. New York City Android app developers also like the new copy-and-paste function, which is bolstered by Google’s state-of-the-art AI. The so-called Smart Text Selection pulls up a link to Maps when anything address-like is highlighted, or the phone when a number is selected. But all of this takes a backseat to what people are most excited about: new emojis. After all, who doesn’t like emojis? Oreo has a brand new batch, 86ing the awkward blob emojis that have appeared on Android devices for years in favor of more traditional rounded ones. The future of communication is here.

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