Google rolled out the public beta release of Android P at its annual developer conference in Mountain View, California. The first developer preview for Android P was made available earlier this year, and features like its adaptability for notch, improved privacy restrictions, and more were revealed. Though the stable version of Android P will not be rolled out until late summer, its public beta will be available on seven phones in addition to Google’s Pixel and Pixel 2 series. This includes Nokia 7 Plus, Sony Xperia XZ2, Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S, Oppo R15 Pro, Vivo X21, Essential PH‑1, and the upcoming OnePlus 6.
This is probably the first time that so many partner devices are getting an early release of Google’s new Android version, which has typically been limited to Pixel and Nexus devices. The search giant is expanding the beta of the new Android version to smartphones from Xiaomi, Oppo, Nokia, OnePlus and more players. Thanks to Project Treble, which has re-designed Android, it is now faster and cheaper for manufacturers to update devices. Google Project Treble was unveiled in May, 2017.
Android P beta How to enroll
Android P beta can be installed by signing up for it on android.com/beta. Do note that users will have to sign up for Android P, irrespective of whether they enrolled in the Android O Beta Program. This means people who signed up for Android O beta will have to do so for Android P once again. Users need to sign up with the same Google account that they have signed in on their smartphone. Once users accept the Android Beta Program Terms of Service, they can also share their feedback about Android P with the company from their device and by joining the Android Beta Program Google+ community.
Android P beta: Backup device
Remember the beta version will likely be full of bugs and users are advised to back up their Android smartphone before installing the software. “The updates that you’ll receive as a part of this program are pre-release versions, and may contain errors and defects that can affect normal functioning of your device,” reads Android Beta Program page. The company advises developers against downloading the beta for Wear OS on their primary device as it is at an early stage.
Google Pixel, Pixel 2 series users can simply sign up with their Google account for the Android Beta Program to get the pre-release versions of Android P on their devices. Post signing-up, users will get a prompt on their Pixel device about the update being available and that it can be installed.
Android P over-the-air (OTA) update for Nokia 7 Plus, Sony Xperia XZ2, Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S, Oppo R15 Pro, Vivo X21, Essential PH‑1, and OnePlus 6 (yet to be launched) will not be available. Users will have to flash their smartphone with the beta build of Android P. Users can head over to Google’s Android Beta Program page for specific instructions on how to flash the software version.
Android P beta: How to leave the beta program
The pre-release updates will automatically be made available for users who choose to keep Android P beta on their devices. Of course, people can opt out of the beta program at any time to return to the stable, public version of Android. However, all of a users’ data will be wiped out if they choose to opt out. Those who stay enrolled till the end of program will receive the stable public release of Android P, and the device will not be wiped.
Android P gives users access to several new features like Adaptive battery, Adaptive brightness, Slices, iPhone X-like gestures, and more. The big focus is on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning. The “Adaptive battery” feature tries to adapt to the user’s usage patterns based on the apps they use and at what times of the day. Android P’s “Adaptive brightness” automatically adjusts the brightness, based on the user’s preferences. Google has also introduced “Predictive actions” to make the user-interface more intelligence. For instance, users will see a shortcut to the YouTube app, and even suggestion to buy tickets in the Fandango app when users search for Avengers: Infinity War.
Android P “Slices” feature will display small functions of the app in the user’s search results. For instance, when users search for “Lyft”, they might even be able to book a cab directly from the search result. Apple iPhone X-like gestures include swiping up from the bottom of the display to see all of recently opened apps. With Android P, users will also get access to a new Dashboard app that shows how much time they have spent on particular apps, how many notifications they have received, how many times they unlocked their device, and more.