The Android 9.0 P is the upcoming major update for Google Pixel and Pixel XL phones after Android Oreo. Google has released the first, second, third and fourth Android 9.0 P developer previews with interesting features. The Beta release for Pixel and Pixel XL devices has been available since May 8th. So Android P will be more than an incremental update over the Oreo.
The Search Giant launched the first Developer Preview of Android P on March 8th with many new features like Call recording Notification, New UI and so on. About two months later, Google pushed out the First Beta cum DP2 at I/O 2018 on 8th, May. The Beta contains remarkable features like Gesture-based Interface, Digital Wellbeing, App actions etc.
In June, the third Preview with finilized APIs rolledout to the registered Pixel and Pixel XL users. On July 2nd, the Search Giant released the fourth Preview cum third Beta with many UI changes, new Back button and some minor changes.
However, as noted in the Roadmap announced by Google, the DP4 should come in late-June, which is delayed a little bit. The next preview may come in late-July and final version rollout should start in August or September 2018. The unlocked editions of Google Pixel will receive the update earlier than carrier locked editions. The confirmed rollout dates of Android P for Pixel devices will be revealed in coming days.
With Android 8.0 Oreo, Google brought remarkable features like Picture in Picture mode, Notification channels, Notification dots, App background limits etc. According to the latest rumours, the update is coming with many refinements over Android Oreo.
A call recording notification will be displayed in Android P, when the call is being recorded, according to the recently made commits in AOSP. So the privacy of the user will be protected. A report from XDA developers says that Android P will block all the sensor, microphone access to apps, protecting the user’s privacy. So users don’t have to suspect an app’s behaviour while using it, android take care of the user’s privacy by blocking the Microphone and Camera permissions. So users have to approve these permissions separately while using any app.
Unfortunately, the most awaited dark mode feature is not coming with Android P. Earlier in an AMA session, the developer team told that the dark mode feature wouldn’t come in near future. In Android 8.0 and 8.1, no dark mode was present, but the powermenu features dark mode in Android 8.1. Recently, Google claarified that Android P feature no dark mode feature but may come with future releases.
Signal strength indication refinements are other changes coming with the upcoming update. According to carrier requests, Google may change the signal bars displayed in the system UI, so on one carrier signal strength might be low but 3 signal bars will be displayed instead of 2. More details about this change will be revealed in coming days.
The indoor navigation using Wi-Fi RTT is one of the most anticipated features of the Android 9.0 P update for Google Pxel users. The upcoming OS supports the IEEE 802.11mc WiFi protocol through which the user can navigate GPS style easily indoors.
It is still unknown whether Google Pixel and Pixel XL devices support the Wi-Fi Round Trip Time Feature. In coming days, more details about the feature will be revealed.
The Neural Network API made its debut with Android 8.1 Oreo which provides a base layer for neural network learning frameworks like Caffe2, Tensor Flowlite. In Android P, Google refined the Neural Network API feature.
Google expands the API and adds support for nine new ops — Pad, BatchToSpaceND, SpaceToBatchND, Transpose, Strided Slice, Mean, Div, Sub, and Squeeze. In upcoming previews and final release, more improvements to NNAPI 1.1 could come.
In earlier versions of Android, Google made many optimizations to notifications to improve user experience. In line with expectations, Google further improved the interface of notifications with the addition of smart reply feature in the first preview of Android 9.0 P. With the smart reply feature, users can easily send quick reply directly from the notifications of messaging apps.
Messaging apps show the profile picture preview in the notifications in Android P, users can also preview the full message by expanding the notification. Overall, the feature seems to be adapted from iOS, except the implementation of 3D touch. In the upcoming Beta and previews, we will know more about the notifications of Android P.
Update on 2/3/2018 :
According to Android Open source commits regarding Android P, which are revealed by XDA developers, Google is testing the Android 9.0 Vendor image on Google Pixel 2, codenamed “Wahoo”. With the arrival of Project Treble with Android 8.0, software updates become easier to rollout and install.
The Android P vendor image will be very easy to download and install and most likely won’t cause any bootloop problems because the Stable Interface part of the OS arrived with the device won’t get changed with the update. Now it seems that Google is testing such vendor image on Pixel 2 running on Android 8.1. More details about the Android 9.0 will be revealed in coming days.
Update on 8/3/2018 :
A few hours ago, Google released the Android P Developer Preview 1 and now the factory images of the preview are available for Google Pixel and Pixel 2. The official images can be downloaded from here and flashed following the instructions given in the site.
We mention again that these images are for developers only and not suitable for daily use. The stable beta build and developer preview 2 will arrive at the Google I/O event which will took place in May.
Update on 8/5/2018 :
Today, at Google I/O 2018, the Search giant unveiled the first Beta of Android P with many improvements over DP1. The second preview / Beta of Android P comes with new features like Gestures support, Digital wellbeing, Android P AI support etc.
Currently, the beta is available to download for Google Pixel and Pixel XL users, so users can go to the official website and opt-in for beta. The Beta download and install may take a few minutes, albeit the beta is not recommended for daily use, many installed users say that the Beta is so stable. For developers and tech enthusiasts, who want to install the DP2 manually, the system images of Android P DP2 are available now on the official website to download.
Update on 7/6/2018 :
Google released the third developer preview cum Android P Beta 2 officially, a few hours ago. About four weeks after the release of Beta 1, the second beta arrived. The rollout for Pixel and Pixel XL Beta testers has begun already and factory images of DP3 are also available to download. So developers and tech enthusiasts can get the official Android P factory images and flash them following the given instructions.
One of the new features arrived with DP3 is new set of emoji, red head and gender neutral. Visual changes in DP3 include transparency in the UI, lockscreen wheather indicator and many more. The APIs got finalized this update, so developers can test their apps for Android P.
Update on 11/7/2018 :
Google has pushed out the fourth preview cum third beta for Pixel and Pixel 2 series devices on 2nd July. Along with Pixel series, other devices included in Beta program which are Xperia XZ2, Nokia 7 Plus and others will also receive the third Beta of Android P in coming days.
There are no major visual changes arrived with the Android P DP4 but some improvements are made to battery life. The DP4 is appears very near to final release. Some minor changes are there which are rotation toggle icon in navbar, removes fill in the UI icons and so on. Upcoming events are displayed on lockscreen in DP4 which was disabled in earlier DP.
Update on 25/7/2018 :
Today, Google released the Android P DP5 and also begins the OTA rollout for the registered Pixel and Pixel 2 owners. The VP of Android Engineering, Dave Burke posted in the official blog that DP5 is the last preview for Android 9.0 and the public release is near. So all app developers are requested to make thier apps fully compatible with Android P and notched Display.
The earlier roadmap released by Google, noted that the public release of Android P could come in Q3 and DP5 in late-July. Following the schedule, the Search Giant released the Beta 4 cum DP5 today. Previously, Android 8.0 O DP4 arrived on July 24th, 2017 and the final version came on August 21st, 2017. So this time Android P may come earlier rather than late-August, as the DP5 is stable enough and most likely no more big changes in the public release.
Update on 3/8/2018 :
We will update this post soon with more news about Android P for Pixel and Pixel XL in coming days.