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Saturday, 26 August 2017

Google Launches Android 8.0 Oreo. See its top features

Since touch-based phones were introduced in the 1960s by E. A. Johnson at the Royal Radar Establishment, UK, Android OS has since taken the front seat by supporting a variety of mobile devices working on the touch interface. Though other OS such as the Apple iOS, Chrome OS and Windows have provided stern competition, the ease with which new users can operate Android and the wide APIs support have command a galore of a community of users. Several versions of this operating system have been launched and released into the mobile phone industry for manufacturers to use in developing their devices.
Abdroid 8 Oreo


With each version comes improvement on functionality and performance, while adding intriguing features and capabilities to the overall feel of the software. The latest version released August 2017 is Android 8.0 also known as Android Oreo or Android O.  Android O comes with exciting new features aimed at bettering the level of satisfaction consumers will get from using devices working on the platform when compared to other touch-based Operating Systems powering most smartphones.

About Android

Android OS

 

Android is an Operating System developed, distributed and managed by Google. When the idea to develop mobile phones with touch capabilities emerged, few other OS used by Nokia and Samsung phones were invented. Along the line, a powerful touch-based OS, in Android, was introduced into the brand. It took just a few years for it to become de facto OS chosen by manufacturers. First Tecno Mobile created, what then was regarded as, “cool” phones using this OS. This quickly lifted the Tecno brand, drawing strong competitions with Nokia, Alcatel and Sony Ericsson. Users could use their fingers to touch buttons and commands on the screen, rather than the use of pen or pressing of buttons that dominated the industry before then.

Coupled with other cool features for social media interaction and the ego it gave users, a greater percentage of phone users, who could afford one at the time, tilted to Tecno to join the smart party. Other companies, discovering the marketing benefits of this operating system, followed the train by manufacturing touch-based mobile phones with Android as the system software. Though Nokia made adjustments to allow for uniqueness, they have however joined fully in using the operating system. Recent Nokia phones such as Nokia 8 come with fully powered Android nougat (version 7.0). Read more about the Android Operating System.

The Inspiration behind Android O

The working and build of this touch-based Operating System are based upon the need to address challenges akin to multitasking needs, performance, usability, security and business integration. In addition to these key features, it integrates more functionalities to help boost productivity and ease management needs for those in need of digital assistance in managing both personal and official activities. With the forecasted total eclipse in the USA on 21st of August 2017, Android Oreo was tipped as the digital platform to help users experience the eclipse the better and exciting way. Emily Wood, the Editor-in-Chief of the Official Android Blog stated:
People worldwide have explained solar eclipse through the lens of myth and legend for centuries. This year, there’s a new supernatural being whose identity will be revealed as the sun and the moon do their celestial dance. Get ready to meet Android.
This statement was made to emphasize the role this OS will play in bringing visual effects to its users starting first with the solar eclipse. It is well understood that much effort has been put, over the years, into the development of this operating system to ensure that better versions of it are released for use each period. It equally capitalises on security to debar malicious attacks from the league of hackers available out there.

Trademark and Visual Representation

 
Android O

Android O is represented with an imagined flying hero comic protected by an assumed oat shell that drives the message of security and protection. The assumed flying posture tells the story of attaining unimagined heights with the elegance that comes with it. Retaining the traditional colour mask of toned green and anchored whites with slight variants to the overall look, it seems unique and captivating. The truth lies in the fact that green has been associated with liveliness, freshness and agility. That is meant to say that, Android Oreo will support and inspire ground breaking technologies that will keep users fresh in the kind of experience they derive from using it. Sameer Samat, VP of Product Management, Android and Google Play noted that “the latest release of the platform – Android 8.0 Oreo – is it’s smarter, faster and more powerful than ever … Plus, it’s got stronger security protections and speed improvements that keep you safe and moving at light speed...”

Features of Android 8.0 Oreo

The exciting features revealed by this latest version are quite awesome and resemblance of the aim of the digital age. With these features come the O-smart age oozing users to a new world of great possibilities. The top features have been discussed below to give you a better understanding of the experience you will get when using devices functioning on this new release.

1. Play Pay

Android Pay

 

Play Pay feature is a new way of going “cashless” with your device. It acts as a new hub for your cards making easy and possible to pay with your debit, credit, loyalty and gift cards. Just pay and start shopping in stores, apps and online malls. According to Android’s official web site:
Android Pay can be used at millions of stores around the world, wherever contactless payments are accepted.
This feature has been developed in such a way that the security of your card(s) is assured. When payments are made in stores, Android Pay uses a virtual account number to represent your account information. So your card details stay safe and secure at all times. You will, therefore, be concerned with making purchases rather than the security of your card – this is duly covered and controlled for you by this feature.

2. Google Play Protect

Protecting sensitive and personal information is definitely a necessity and something not taken lightly by the bulk of mobile phone users. Google Play Protect keeps your device safe and free from the malfunctioning applications. This it does by scanning over 50 billion applications you have installed or downloaded to play store but yet to install. Surprisingly, this is done every day to keep you and your device completely safe from radical operations by applications.
The fear of which app can harm your device so that you will not download and install it is removed. You search for and download while waiting for Google Play Protect to determine the safety of the application you have downloaded. Quite an awesome feature to make us of.

3. Security

While Google Play Protect is concerned with applications you download or install, the security feature in Android Oreo goes beyond just that. It extends to the safety of your files, personal information and privacy concerns. It prevents applications from sending data and information from the background without your permission. This function alone makes sure that you are not sold in the dark by your device.
Android Security

Again, the security feature prevents unauthorized access to important files and documents by providing a security interface that requires authentication before gaining access to it. The various authentication methods added include; fingerprint sensing, voice recognition, pin entering and pattern unlocking.
The security feature gets more trivial when third party security applications are installed to cover other protection needs. For instance, with a third party application, face recognition can be used as a security module to hinder illegal access to the contents of your device.

4. More Emoji

Emoji are a new way of expressing emotions, feelings and perceptions in pictorial formats. This takes the form of small diagrams representing different animate and inanimate things such as insects, human faces, traffic signals, and much more. Not that previous versions lacked emoji, they had emoji. But this version adds to the number. Over 60 new fully redesigned emoji have been added to let you share how you feel with just pictures alone.

5. Smarter Display and Graphics

This feature enables applications to display high-quality visuals with inspiring colours and gradients. The colour scheme integrated into it allows applications to display graphics and images in their intended or original format without conversion. That is most important for game lovers who enjoy playing games with high graphics effects such as soccer, racing, arcade games and so on.

6. Tooltips

Tooltips are information icons displayed beside applications or objects to shed more light to what is expected. They are like brief instructional manual worked to enhance the operation of the object concerned. With Tooltips, series of errors and wrong approach to the use of some applications and features can easily be avoided. Though tooltips have been in use in application development and web design, they had not been extended to mobile OS in the way Android O has now applied them. So feel free to read about the stuff you want to access or tap before doing so.

7. Battery Management

Android O Battery Management

 

It is a well-known fact that some applications run in the background utilizing the power and subsequently draining off the battery at a faster rate. The design of this operating system is such that applications do not overuse power in the background. It assumes more control over how applications run in the background by setting execution limits automatically. Subsequent applications and upgraded versions of applications intended to work on this OS will take into consideration this limit. By so doing, the health of the device and the battery will be protected from overuse and unnecessary stretch.

8. Notification dots

This an entirely new feature added to the notification system. Notification dots are visual indicators that appear on the icons of applications to show an impending or new notification. Those who have been using iPhone should be conversant with this feature which has been existing in the iOS software for some years now. With this notification system, you can easily determine the application on which a particular notification has been served.

9. Notification Snoozing

Snoozing allows you to suspend a particular notification to another time set in minutes. With this feature, message you had to remember but because of immediate pressing activities find it difficult to attend to, can be snoozed to a particular time. This will allow you to concentrate on what you’re doing at that particular time and equally bring to your remembrance the same message so you can respond as appropriate.

10. Autofill APIs

Saving time and increasing the speed at which we do certain things online is hugely considered by Google. That is why the autofill feature was added to this latest version of the operating system. To use autofill, one has to first save passwords, contact details, bio data and other information commonly asked for on web forms. When the need to fill a particular form arises, the autofill function will suggest a suitable input which when selected results to other input fields being filled automatically.
Also, this feature comes with a password manager to manage all the passwords you use for the different websites you visit and log in to. But this is done by your permission. Permitting this would mean that the autofill app will remember login details for your favourite websites and automatically input them for you when you enter the first letter of the details. So, it’s simplified to have automatic form autofill. This feature is seriously being used by PC users as it is supported by applications such as Avast Antivirus on web platforms.

11. Picture-in-picture

If you are streaming a video on YouTube but need to attend to other things on your phone, you no longer need to close the video. With the Picture-in-picture feature, you will only have to minimize the video to a smaller screen while working on other applications.

12. Camera App improvements

There have been significant improvements in the Camera application that comes with it. With just a click of a single button, you can easily switch between video and photo in addition to a better zoom level.

13. Better Audio

There is a new Native C/C++ API for high-performance audio built with it. With support from Sony’s Audio technology, there greater support for applications that require high-performance audio. Also, playing audio and video has just got better with this improvement.

14. TextView Autosizing

According to Google, developers can now let the size of their text expand or contract automatically based on the size and characteristics of the TextView, making it much easier to optimize the text size on different screens or with dynamic content. Since screen sizes differ, this feature will enable texts to automatically fit the display of the device without altering the intended presentation and look of textual elements.

15. Integrated Printing Support

This operating system is compatible with popular printers for wireless printing directly from phones. Google explained that this OS has compatibility and support with all Mopria-certified printers, which make up 97% of the printers sold worldwide. This is indeed encouraging as you can print your documents and files directly from your phone without transferring to a PC.

16. Google Switch

Let’s assume you bought a new phone or lost your former phone but finding it difficult to recover important information and files, Google Switch can bail you out. With this feature available, a sound backup of your contacts, files and documents is maintained. Once a new device is available, follow the steps given by google to switch your documents, contacts and files to the new device without any loss.

17. Google Work

This feature enables you separate work from personal applications. With this you can; control data and privacy, enjoy the familiar experience, get business apps on play, turn off work and use built-in business apps to enhance what you do.

Finally!

An entire world of great possibilities awaits us with this new O-smart technology. Though current smartphones are yet to work with it, Google is work speedily with hardware manufacturers to provide upgrades to mobile devices with the right hardware. Definitely, other new phones will come fully loaded with the exciting features of this wonderful operating system.


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