March 12, 2018

Android P Peeks Out

Filed under: Main — Tags: — admin @ 7:49 am

I’m going [to try] to avoid my ongoing rant about whether new OS upgrades are needed annually, and just dive into what happened this past week: Google released the first prototype (not even a beta) of the next version of Android, P. It doesn’t even have a dessert name yet.

The preview video I watched on Droid Life (it’s about 18 minutes long) contained a few, scattered tidbits about the new OS, but nothing groundbreaking beyond cosmetic changes. Again (Oh no! I’m starting to rant!), the worthiness of annual OS upgrades is brought into question. Then again, minor updates are good in that the user experience doesn’t really change and possibly improves.

As someone who programs, I know the compulsion to constantly fine tune software. Google’s recent Android updates offer new features and consistencies and enhance the user experience. They haven’t quite reached the obsessive upgrade stage, not like Apple’s OS X, which forces weird new features for the sake of new features, then drops them a few versions later. No, Android is polishing what’s already a nifty OS.

The only big question about Android P, the one that everyone cares about, is which P-named dessert earns the title? The geeks want it to be Pie, which is my first guess for a P-named dessert. Then again, Praline is good name. And they could go with the alliteration Pecan Pie.

Secondary to the dessert name is the version number. Android Oreo, the current version, is 8. Will P be version 9.0 or will they go with 8.2 or something? They’ve done that before with other minor releases getting their own dessert name. This pattern isn’t predictable, however.

If you’re an Android device user, the a new OS isn’t really anything to be excited about. Unlike the iPhone and iPad, Android updates aren’t pushed to all Android devices. Only the newest Androids have a chance at the update. Even new phones and tablets may not come out of the box with Android P right away, not for a year or more.

I’ll write more about Android P as its release draws nigh. Until then: Pie? Praline? Pecan Pie? Something I’m overlooking?

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