Google’s Android 12L officially launched, will come to select devices this year – TechCrunch

Google in October announced a preview of Android 12L, a version of the Android operating system designed specifically for large-screen devices. Today, Android 12L is officially available, delivering features that will make Android easier to use on tablets. The software will begin rolling out to supported devices from Samsung, Lenovo and Microsoft from the end of the year, Google said.

The idea with Android 12L was to adapt Android to users of tablets and foldable devices over 600 sp with an updated user interface, multitasking improvements and improved compatibility support so that apps offer a better default experience when run on larger screen devices.

With Android 12L, for example, the notification shade takes advantage of the expanded space by displaying quick settings and your notifications in a two-column layout. The lock screen also uses a two-column layout to display your notifications and clock. Other built-in system apps, such as Settings, are also optimized for the larger screen, allowing you to make changes without having to go in and out of each section. Some key interactions have also changed, such as placing the PIN commands and lock screen pattern to the side of the screen for easier access.

Picture credits: Google

Android 12L treats foldables with an optimized home screen grid and a refined fold-to-unfold transition, Google notes.

12L also adds a new taskbar for launching and switching between apps, while gesture navigation helps users do things like browse recent apps, show or hide the taskbar, enter split-screen mode, and swipe up. up to go home. Android 12L users can now drag and drop apps directly into split screen from the taskbar or use a new “Split” action in the overview to start split screen mode. This means you can watch a YouTube video while you read the news, search the web in the Chrome browser, or use Google Maps, for example. (Split-screen mode wasn’t new, to be clear, but it’s now easier to access in Android 12L and doesn’t require the developer to commit to supporting the mode.)

And 12L offers visual and stability improvements to Android’s compatibility mode for apps that aren’t yet optimized for large-screen devices.

Picture credits: Google

The updated version of Android follows other improvements Google has made to Android tablets in recent years, including the launch of a kids’ space in 2020, which is essentially a “kids mode” on tablets; and an Entertainment Space, launched last year, that offers a one-stop shop for all your content, including movies, shows, books, games and videos, all in one destination.

While Android 12L is similar to its Apple counterpart, iPadOS, in that it also aims to meet the needs of tablet owners, Google stopped short of actually turning Android into a separate operating system, like Apple did it with iOS and iPadOS.

The official launch of Android 12L arrived alongside the latest Pixel Feature Drop, the update that brings Google’s Pixel devices the latest set of new features. In this tenth feature, Google added Night Sight support for Snapchat, Live Captions for phone calls, language extensions for Live Translate, and other additions.

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