Google recently released the first Developer Preview of its upcoming OS, Android P. The latest iteration of Google’s Android OS comes with new features and upgrades over its predecessor. Along with the incremental changes, Google will reduce the clutter of old apps on its Play Store.
Android P’s build release notes state that apps which do not support the current API level will “fail to install and run”. At present, Android P’s API level for apps is v17 which is the same for Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. This essentially means that apps which are currently available in the app store but built for Android versions lower than 4.2 will not run on Android P.
According to a report by Android Police, in Android P Developer Preview 1 Google warns users by showing a popup message – “This app was built for an older version of Android and may not work properly. Try checking for updates, or contact the developer.”
As of now, the older apps are still running on Android P but with added warnings. It isn’t clear if Google will not allow these apps to run completely or still issue warnings around it. Apple with the release of iOS 11 last year made it clear that the OS will only support 64-bit apps. Support for 32-bit apps was stopped with iOS 11. READ: Google bracing for 64-bit only ecosystem: Here’s how it affects you, developers
Android P Developer Preview 1 is currently available for Google Pixel and Pixel 2 series. The stable version of Android P with its official name is expected to be announced sometime in August according to the company’s schedule.
With Android P, Google appears to be focusing quite extensively on apps. Android P will disable apps from using your smartphone’s microphone in the background. This feature arises from reports of apps like Facebook using your smartphone’s microphone to listen to your conversations.
Apps like Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram require using your microphone and camera. You can turn the access off for these apps but you’d have to manually turn them on for certain actions like video calling, taking a picture, and so on. But with Android P, Google will automatically turn the microphone and camera access off.
Google continues to tweak notifications on Android P with a new look and shortcut. The notification drawer will have rounded corners and users will be able to reply to messages directly from here. Messaging apps will also come with “Smart Replies”, images and stickers in the notification box.
Android P also comes with support for iPhone X-like notch design. Contrary to the negative response received, iPhone X notch display has heavily influenced Android players with the trend seeing a sudden rise. Asus Zenfone 5 is the first example of this design with more companies like OnePlus, LG, Xiaomi and Vivo expected to follow.