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Old 08-07-2018, 08:57am   #1
Mike Mercury
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Default I like Pie; 5 most important Android Pie updates

App time limits
Thereís a lot of new stuff in Android Pie, but for my money, this is the biggest deal. Google is going to show you how much time you spend in every app. And, more importantly, itís going to let you set time limits on how long you use them.

Youíll be able to limit yourself to a certain amount of time every day ó say, 15 minutes or an hour. After that time, the appís icon will go gray. When you try to use it, Android wonít let you. Instead, a pop-up will tell you that youíve hit your time limit. There wonít even be a button to ignore it and let you open the app anyway. (Youíll be able to get back into the app if you really need to, but youíd have to go back into settings and remove your time limit.)

Google says it might tweak exactly how that works before the features exit beta; itís also considering an option that will turn your entire phone black and white when youíre supposed to go to bed. Both are great ideas. Particularly over the past year, thereís been a rise in complaints about the time we spend staring at our phones. There have been parental control apps for a while now, but there hasnít been an equivalent service that lets adults set limits for themselves.

These features arenít being made available to everyone right away. If you have a Pixel or Pixel 2, youíll be able to start testing them now, but other phones will have to wait. It sounds like the features will probably arrive more widely in October, when Google ships its next Pixel phones.

Fewer notification annoyances
Notifications are a smartphone necessity. Theyíre also the absolute worst. Google is trying to do even more in Android Pie to get them out of your face. For one, itíll suggest muting an appís notifications if you keep swiping them away. But the even bigger thing is how much itís beefing up Do Not Disturb.

Now, when your phone enters Do Not Disturb mode, youíll be able to set it so that notifications donít appear on-screen at all. Nowhere. Not on the lock screen. Not even in the notification drawer. Youíll also be able to turn on Do Not Disturb by flipping the phone facedown on a table. And if your phone is set up to separate your work apps from your personal ones, thereíll now be a toggle to mute all of them at once, which should be great for vacations or even just the weekend.

Gesture navigation
Itís been more than six years since Google last made a substantial change to how you navigate Android. Since 2011, itís been all about those three on-screen buttons: back, home, and multitask. But now thatís about to change.

In Android Pie, Google begins to transition over to a gesture-based control scheme. At first, youíll just see the home button. Youíll swipe up to multitask... but, uh, youíll also be able to swipe right to multitask. Thereíll be a back button, but only when an app can actually use it.

In some ways, this new control scheme will definitely complicate things, especially for less smartphone-savvy users. Itís hard to beat always-present buttons. But the gestures begin to move Android toward a much more flexible way of controlling the operating system, and one that, eventually, will likely help to free up screen space, too.

During the beta, Pieís gesture controls didnít get the warmest reception, but fortunately, youíll have an option as to whether or not you want to use them. In fact, the gesture interface wonít even be activated by default ó youíll have to go into settings and turn it on yourself if you want to use it.

Screenshot editing
This one is overdue, but Iím still very excited about it. In Android Pie, youíll be able to edit and mark up screenshots after taking them, instead of having to jump over to another app. Thereíll also be an option to take a screenshot from the power menu, which will be handy for when you inevitably forget the multibutton shortcut.

Smarter app search results
Androidís built-in search is getting a lot more capable in Pie. Now, instead of just pulling up icons of installed apps, itíll be able to pull up things you can do inside of apps, too. So if you search for Lyft, you might also get buttons to hail a ride to your home or office, saving you some extra button presses.

The app drawer will also use that ability to intelligently suggest things for you to do. So instead of just presenting the button for Seamless, it might also show you a prompt to reorder your last meal.

This feature isnít supposed to launch until the fall, and it isnít available to beta test, although it looks like some of Googleís default apps already support suggestions in the app drawer.

https://www.theverge.com/2018/5/9/17...google-io-2018




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Old 08-09-2018, 10:43am   #2
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Old 08-09-2018, 11:49am   #3
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