Everything That’s New in the Android P Developer Preview 3
Every iteration of the Android P developer preview brings with it a mixed bag of major and minor QoL changes which may or may not make it to the final release. This particular release doesn’t have too much in the way of user-facing changes and focuses mostly on under-the-hood improvments. Here are a few changes spotted in the Android P Developer Preview 3:
Before getting into the complicated stuff, let’s start with some emojis. The release includes support for Unicode/Emoji 11.0—which was technically only officially released yesterday. Some of the newly introduced Emojis are gender-inclusive, for example emoji like Couple With Heart can specify the genders which appear in each heart. It also includes the 157 new emoji from the Emoji 11.0 standard. That list features such considerations as Lobster, Mango, Llama, Cold Face, Hot Face, Ball of Yarn, Mooncake, Superhero, Face with Three Hearts, and Bagel with Cream Cheese, as well as a whole variety of red-headed emoji modifiers. A few emojis got a few tweaks here and there, but that’s about it.
Pixel 2’s color adjustment menu shows a picture for reference
The Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL are both excellent devices in their own regard, but the same can’t be said for their displays. The OLED panels on both are lacklustre, compared to the the likes of Samsung. Google introduced tuning options in the software in at attempt to make things better. The feature simply lets users switch between “Natural,” “Boosted,” or “Saturated” colors. While the differences are pretty easy to spot when you head back to apps, it’s always been a bit annoying that there’s no clear point of reference when picking out a setting. In Android P’s third developer preview, Google has added a new picture to this color picker, giving users an easy point of reference when choosing between modes.
A newer, more colourful fingerprint enrolling animation
There isn’t really much to this one. The Android P developer preview 3 adds a little colour to the otherwise dull fingerprint registration screen. Colorful lines race around the fingerprint image on the screen periodically when you’re not touching the sensor. As you tap on the sensor to train it, the image flashes with colors. That’s about it, really.
It is harder for apps to snoop through your phone logs
Finally, a change that isn’t purely cosmetic. In the Android P Developer Preview 3, a new permission group has been added. This permission group pertains specifically to the Android call log, meaning that when an application wants to read your call log or phone numbers, a prominent, user-facing message will display telling them exactly what kind of access they are granting an app. Previously, apps that wanted to access your call history could do so by acquiring permission for the PHONE permission group. Android P creates a new CALL_LOG permission group to cut down on apps acquiring information they don’t need. Essentially, Android P created a new permission group for call logs, so that they can’t be accessed by an app that has access to your phone data. However, it won’t really matter too much as most people blindly allow whatever permissions an app asks for. But, it’s a nice feature to have for the more privacy-conscious lot out there.