30 Sep 2014

Android L for Lollipop?

Overview

With Android 4.4 Kitkat growing older day by day, it is time for a newer version of Android, which will start with the letter L. But Google already showed us what to expect in Android L in the Google I/O 2014 and also released the developer preview. What is so new about this version of Android? What are the impressions of Techist.net? Read more to find out.

New Runtime

The new version of Android runs on ART instead of Dalvik, which proved successful in the experiment on KitKat. It promises faster speeds and might be better than Dalvik.

New Design

flickr/Yuri Samoilov

Android now has a new look, similar to how Apple changed the look of iOS in iOS 7. Android calls this new look Material Design. It is a very nice aesthetic improvement, as elements float in or come in from somewhere rather than appearing suddenly. The toggles also have nice animations. Now, instead of the Holo feel, you have a Light kind of a feel - it looks much like HTC Sense.
Although I'm not a fan of changes just like that, I had to admit that the UI looked pretty good. The on-screen home, multitasking, and back button to a minimalistic look. The status bar is now completely transparent and the keyboard also has a new look. All the apps also have gotten a completely new makeover as well. It even has a new overscroll animation, instead of the bounce effect on KitKat. Google really seems to be working hard for this version of Android

New Lockscreen

There is a new lock screen on Android L which lets you access all your notifications from there itself, also you can expand them then and there using gestures. You can even dismiss them using the same gestures you use in the notifications panel. You can also access the dialer by swiping to the right and as usual, the camera, by swiping to the left. But now, to unlock the phone, you have to swipe up instead. I think this is Google's attempt to dissuade those using custom lockscreens from doing so.

Other Small Changes

flickr/Yuri Samoilov
The multitasking menu has been changed to look like the new tab menu of Chrome. Coincidentally, you can also access separate Chrome pages in that menu. Also, in the notifications panel now has a new way to reach Quickpanel. You now have to swipe down to do so, and that makes it so much easier for one handed use.
Android L also detects when it is in a secure environment, if you are wearing a smart watch, and it unlocks the phone automatically.

Conclusion

Android L is just an update that carries a lot of visual changes and some updated functionalities. The developer preview does a good job on the Nexus 5 and 7, but lets see if this version will hold up Android's solid reputation properly.


This article was written by Vignesh Shankar, another admin at Techist.net, for queries please email him at vignesh@techist.net 

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