Google has released the developer preview of Android N a few months before Google I/O. It is also the first time that Google is making it easy for everyone to try out the preview of the version code named ‘N’. The developer preview is available as an over-the-air (OTA) update via Google’s Android beta website.
The yet-to-be-named Android version brings in a bunch of new features and improvements, chief among which is the split-screen mode. As the name suggests, this feature will let users run two apps simultaneously side-by-side. A similar feature was introduced on iOS 9, and we will finally see Android tablets making the most of it.
Google has also made some improvements to the notifications. On N, there’s a new ‘bundled notifications’ feature, which will let apps put multiple messages on a single notification card. Another new feature will make it easier for users to directly reply to notifications without actually opening the app.
The Doze battery-saving feature introduced with Marshmallow is also getting an update. Instead of only saving battery when the phone is on, it will also do its thing when the phone screen is off. Google promises that there are other new features, which should be revealed at I/O in May.
Google warns that the Android N preview is only aimed at developers and is ‘not suitable for use on your primary device’. The Android N preview is compatible with the Nexus 6, Nexus 9, Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, Nexus Player, and the Pixel C.
According to mobile app development company, the developer preview is fairly easy to install on your Nexus devices. The easier way is to head over to the Android Beta webpage, and after logging in with your Google account, register your Nexus device. Once registered, the Android N update will be sent to your device over-the-air, and you will get a notification similar to when your device receives an official Android update.
You can also opt for the longer method and download the specific Android N system image and manually flash it to your device. Device-specific system images are available on Android’s Developer website. You can follow these steps to flash Android N developer preview on your Nexus devices.