Android O Update: Emojis Redesigned, New Features To Be Released First On Chromebook Before Mobile Phones
Dave Burke, Google Vice President of Engineering for Android, speaks during the opening keynote address

Android O Update: Emojis Redesigned, New Features To Be Released First On Chromebook Before Mobile Phones

Android O, the next big update coming to mobile phones, is finally redesigning those weird blobs they call emojis. The first developer’s preview still featured these emojis that are shaped like the end of a thumb, but the second preview now showcased them in a more traditional look with the shape of a circle.

We are all familiar with Android’s idea of emojis that leave much to be desired. With an unconventional shape, the set attempted to be different than the ones we grew up with. But we were not exactly sure that we wanted it to be different.

Still, the emojis stayed with Android through the years and even with other Google apps like Hangouts. Now that they are being redesigned, users cannot be happier, proving that they were only putting up with it because it’s negligible compared to the other offerings of the operating system.

The emojis, seen below, are still more colorful and animated than their iOS counterparts. We can’t say which operating system has a better set of emojis, but now Android can finally be competitive in terms of emoticons – if ever that was a factor in choosing which smartphone to buy.

You can see all the new emojis over at Ars Technica.

Android O Developers Preview 2 Focuses On A Fluid Experience

The change is certainly a big one, but not the biggest one to come in Android O. The latest developer preview brought about huge adjustments to the system and the user interface, making the experience more “fluid,” according to the official Developers Blog.

One of the highlights of the Android O Developers Preview 2 is the picture-in-picture feature that allows users to look at two screens simultaneously. Basically, you can put an app within an app, which works differently than split-screens. This can be used to watch a video while browsing in other apps or to video call while replying to someone’s text message.

Other Android O features outlined by Dave Burke, VP of Engineering, are new notification dots with more functions, Autofill with Google, a new Android TV home screen, and TensorFlow Lite. The Smart Text Selection is also pretty cool as it enhances the copy/paste function by recognizing what the selection is. It could be an email address or a phone number; the OS will recognize this and carry out an action based on this.

Android O has also been improved more than the naked eye can see. More system optimizations have been done, and limits have been placed on background apps. All these work to provide customers with a more “fluid” user experience.

Android O Release Date Still Unknown, Some Features Coming To Chromebook First

It is unknown when Android O is coming to mobile devices, but fans can expect some of its features to go live on Chromebooks first. It seems that Google will not be waiting for the OS to be fully launched before releasing the Chrome OS with the Android O features that are beneficial to it.

According to Kan Liu, Chrome OS’ Senior Director of Product Management, only the features that make sense for the operating system will go live. This means that you won’t see all of Android O features until it is officially released, Android Headlines reports.

As of now, fans expect Android O to start arriving in supported devices in August, which is also when Nougat was released last year. It will most likely come first to Google’s own devices, such as the Pixel 2 if it is already available by then. Hopefully, all Android smartphones will be updated with Nougat before then.

[Featured Image by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]

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