A few weeks before it was expected to announce, Google on Monday officially confirmed the name of the new Android version as Android 9.0 Pie. The search giant has also started rolling out the final stable update for Pixel smartphone and it has also started pushing an OTA update for users who signed up for the beta program.
Google is also publishing sources to the Android Open Source Project (AOSP). The latest Android version has come after five Developer Preview builds of Android P were tested by over 1,40,000 users worldwide. Google has said that the devices that come under their Beta Program, as well as all Android One devices, will receive the update by the end of this fall.
The latest iteration of Android brings several new features and enhancements over Android 8.1 Oreo that uses machine learning and AI to provide you with a tailored experience. The new Adaptive battery feature tracks the apps you use most and prioritizes battery for them. It limits battery for apps you don't use often based on machine learning with DeepMind to optimize how apps use the battery.
Another feature that will help you save battery is Adaptive brightness which uses machine learning to learn how you like to set the brightness under different conditions and adjusts the brightness as per your preferences.
Google has also introduced new system navigation gestures with the Android 9.0 Pie update, making one hand usage easier on taller smartphones. With a single, clean home button, you can swipe up to see the newly designed overview, the spot where at a glance you have full-screen previews of your recently used apps. The new navigation also brings smart text selection, which recognizes the meaning of the selected text and suggests relevant actions.
App Actions is another interesting feature that will make your life easier. It helps you get to your next task more quickly by predicting what you want to do next based on the context. To do this, it suggests the app's abilities to users based on their actions. For example, when you connect your headphones to the device, you may see options to call your mom or start your favorite Spotify playlist.
Other features include Slices, that show relevant information from your favorite apps when you need it. For example. if you start typing Uber on Google search, it will show you a slice highlighting the important information such as the fare for a ride home and the ETA of the driver, allowing you to take actions quickly.
Google had earlier announced a partnership with seven OEMs for beta testing of the Android P. The devices include - Nokia 7 Plus, Essential PH-1, OnePlus 6, Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S, Oppo R15 Pro, Vivo X21 and Sony Xperia XZ2.
American smartphone maker Essential announced that it has started rolling out the Android 9.0 Pie update for its Essential PH-1 within minutes of Google announcing the update for Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL. With this, Essential has become the first smartphone maker after Google to start rolling out the Android 9.0 update to its users.
These seven smartphones along with Google's Android One portfolio will get the Android 9 update by the end of this fall. The Android 9.0 Pie for Pixel and Nexus smartphones can be downloaded from here.