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The new Android 12 icon
The new Android 12 icon

Android 12 First Preview: From notifications to gestures, here's what's new

The initial release has things like compatible media transcoding, which helps apps work with the latest video formats, and easier copy/paste of rich content into apps, like images and videos

Android recently revealed the first Developer Preview of Android 12, the next version of Android, for testing and feedback. The initial release will have things like compatible media transcoding, which helps apps work with the latest video formats, and easier copy/paste of rich content into apps, like images and videos. Android 12 will also be adding privacy protections and optimizing performance to keep apps responsive.

Here are some of the notable changes in Android 12:

Notification UI updates: Android 12 will introduced refreshed notification designs to make them more modern, easier to use, and more functional. In the first preview, users will notice changes from the drawer and controls to the templates. Google will also optimize transitions and animations across the system to make them more smooth. As part of the updates, for apps targeting Android 12 the developers are decorating notifications with custom content with icon and expand affordances to match all other notifications Additionally, notifications will be faster, more responsive.

Rich content insertion: Inserting and moving this content in apps is not always easy. To make it simple for apps to receive rich content, Google is introducing a new unified API that lets developers accept content from any source: clipboard, keyboard, or drag and drop.

Haptic-coupled audio effect: In Android 12 apps can provide audio-coupled haptic feedback through the phone's vibrator. The vibration strength and frequency are derived from an audio session, allowing developers to create more immersive game and audio experiences. For example, a video calling app could use custom ringtones to identify the caller through haptic feedback, or developers could simulate rough terrain in a racing game..

Multi-channel audio: Android 12 includes several enhancements for audio with spatial information. It adds support for MPEG-H playback in passthrough and offload mode, and the audio mixers, resamplers and effects have been optimized for up to 24 channels (the previous maximum was 8).

Immersive mode API improvements for gesture nav: Google has simplified immersive mode so that gesture navigation is easier and more consistent, for example when watching a video, reading a book, or playing a game. Google is changing the default to allow users to navigate their phone with one swipe.

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