Google Announces Android Q Beta 2 with a dash of Bubbles

Android Q Beta 2

The folks at Google have been a little impatient this year, or should we say excited? The company announced the release of Android Q Beta 2 as an incremental update for all Pixel phones, an entire month before I/O. Usually, the company would wait for the conference to announce the shift of status from Alpha to Beta stage of their new version of Android. But this year, Google is shaking things up a little.

The update will be made available to all the phones in the Pixel pantheon, Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL, Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL. Beta 2 is aimed at early testing and development environments.

The first preview of Android Q was released only last month. We weren’t expecting the announcement of the Beta version this early, but hey, this is exciting news.

Let’s have a look at the features that come hand in hand with this update of Android Q. Check this out to see what was promised.

The Beta version features Bubbles, a tool to aid multitasking on our smartphone devices. They appear as floating chat heads that may be collapsed and expanded, as and when you need them. These Bubbles follow you around as you navigate your device.

In the past, third-party app developers had been creating versions of these chat heads. Google found a way to safely integrate this feature within its newest version of Android Q. This ensures reduced development time and protects user privacy.

There are a few developments on the Android Q emulator, as well. Developers may now use it to build apps for foldable devices. We can’t wait to see more of those.

A few changes on the platform have been made to the “onResume and onPause to support multi-resume and notify your app when it has focus.Multitasking abilities on phones enabled with this version of Android are only expected to multiply.

Another useful feature that is introduced with the Beta version, is a microphone API that will allow apps to set the direction of the microphone while recording audio. The days of hearing your voice too loud when you record a video from your rear camera are gone. Well, so we hope.

The latest privacy features, including the scoped storage, will be available for testing and feedback on this Beta version. The interesting thing about scoped storage is that it lets apps create their own little memory box to work out of. They would not require special permissions to access components of your device. The apps would also not be able to access another app’s memory box. It essentially limits the ways in which apps can access your files, which is a cool way to ensure that a privacy breach does not happen.

The build number for this version of Android Q Beta 2 is QPP2.190228.021, it comes with the security patches for April. Users and developers can report bugs on the Android Beta Feedback app, Reddit or the issue tracker.

Google is expected to release four more versions of Android Q by the time of the official launch in Q3 of 2019.

Google needs our help, people. Let show them the support they need. If you have a Pixel device you can install the OTA manually here or you could enroll in the Android Beta Program to get the OTA firectly from Google.