To the Nth

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - TECHNOLOGY -

GOOGLE let de­vel­op­ers have an early look at the next ver­sion of An­droid in a move that could get the soft­ware into a wider va­ri­ety of devices.

The In­ter­net colos­sus be­hind the world’s most pop­u­lar mo­bile op­er­at­ing sys­tem broke from its tra­di­tion of re­leas­ing new ver­sions of An­droid at its an­nual de­vel­op­ers con­fer­ence, which will take place in May this year.

“We’re do­ing some­thing a lit­tle dif­fer­ent this year by re­leas­ing the pre­view early... re­ally early,” Google vice pres­i­dent of en­gi­neer­ing Dave Burke said in a blog post.

“By re­leas­ing a ‘ work in progress’ build ear­lier in de­vel­op­ment, we have more time to in­cor­po­rate de­vel­oper feed­back.”

The de­vel­oper pre­view of the N re­lease of An­droid, ver­sions of which have his­tor­i­cally been named af­ter sweet treats, should help Google have it ready for de­vice mak­ers by the middle of the year, ac­cord­ing to Burke.

New fea­tures touted by Google in­cluded the abil­ity for ap­pli­ca­tions to launch splitscreen modes on smart­phones or tablets.

“In ad­di­tion, ac­tiv­i­ties can also go into pic­ture- in- pic­ture mode on devices like TVs, and is a great fea­ture for apps that play video,” Burke said.

An­droid is also con­tin­u­ing to in­vest in Pro­ject Svelte, which aims to re­duce the amount of mem­ory space re­quired so it can run on a broader range of devices.

An up­dated soft­ware de­vel­op­ers kit al­lows for test­ing on Google- branded Nexus 6, Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, Nexus Player, Nexus 9, and Pixel C devices.

“As we get closer to a fi­nal prod­uct, we’ll be invit­ing con­sumers to try it out as well,” Burke said.

Google makes An­droid soft­ware avail­able free to de­vice mak­ers. The lat­est ver­sion known as An­droid 6.0 Marsh­mal­low be­gan rolling out late last year. – AFP Re­laxnews

The nexus 6P is one of the devices the de­vel­op­ers can use to test An­droid n.

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