Android N details have been trickling out slowly, but now it’s officially available. Google just announced that the software is out for folks who want to test it in developer preview. There’s a lot here, so let’s dive in.
Android N includes a new multitasking feature, a redesigned notification panel, and improvements to Google’s battery-saving Doze feature. The preview will be available for the Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X, Nexus 6, Pixel C, Nexus 9, Nexus Player and an Android One phone called the General Mobile 4G.
The biggest news here is probably split-screen multitasking support. The feature lets you run two apps at once in a side-by-side view, and works on both tablets and smartphones. It looks pretty similar to what other companies, including Samsung and Apple, already offer.
The notification panel is also getting a big redesign. You can reply directly to specific notifications using an API from Android Wear, which should make it easy for third-party developers to quickly add support. Android’s power controls have also been moved to the top of the panel for easy access, which lines up with previous leaks.
Finally, Doze mode on Android N will be able to save battery life whenever the screen is turned off, instead of only working when the phone has been sleeping for longer periods of time. That means only “high priority” notifications would show up whenever the screen is off.
There’s more that you can read in the official Google Medium post below, where you’ll also find a link to get started with the Android N Developer Preview.