Google releases final Android 11 Developer Preview before the beta

Google has rolled out the third and final ‘Developer Preview’ for Android 11 with a focus on developer-level features.

If you’re unfamiliar with how Google rolls out a new version of Android, it generally releases a few Developer Previews aimed at establishing behind the scenes features for devs and testing out some new Android functionality.

The next step is the Android beta program, which is more stable and focuses on polishing the OS while adding a few more features.

Right now in 2020, Android 11 is on the final step of the Developer Previews. The Android 11 timeline says it would enter the beta stage in May, so things seem right on track so far. Google shared a little video along with the update and it says the beta is coming in a few weeks, so it seems like we’ll get it in late May.

You can download this preview on every Pixel phone except for either of the original sizes.

The changes

So far, there haven’t been many consumer-facing changes in the latest build of Android 11, but Android Central has found some cool changes this time around.

Users will be able to change the strength of the back gesture independently for each edge, but there doesn’t seem to be a way to turn off one edge or the other.

The screenshot UI has also been changed to offer more straightforward ‘Edit’ and ‘Share’ buttons while also taking on a more pronounced version of Google’s Material Theme. There’s even a little X icon now so you can clear it off your screen easily.

Google’s also revamped the multitasking app switcher, although, it’s unclear if this is for the better or not. In the new update, the app takes up more of the screen, while on Pixel devices the Google Search bar and recent apps are replaced with a screenshot button and a share button for some reason. While this doesn’t seem more useful to me, maybe Google has some data to prove otherwise. Other people don’t seem to have this new interface with the update so it’s very unclear what happening.

That said there is one welcome change to this section of the OS. Now, if you accidentally swipe away a single app to close it, you can swipe towards the bottom of your phone to bring it back. This seems to be a gesture-based undo feature and will be super handy.

On the developer side, Google’s made it easier to transfer large files onto the OS and there’s a Wireless debugging menu that works now, according to Android Central. 

Source: Android Central