We round up the top 10 features of Google's Android 6.0 Marshmallow coming with new phones and tablets. The update is also being rolled out by various Android OEMs for older devices.
Last year, Google unraveled the mystery behind the ‘M’ for its current Android OS update, dubbed as Android 6.0 Marshmallow, which was revealed by the company on its developer blog alongside the final Android 6.0 SDK. The kit is now available for download via the SDK Manager in Android Studio, which offers access to the final Android APIs along with latest developer tools.
The Marshmallow update is more about enhanced performance and new features as opposed to its predecessor that was mostly about design aesthetics.
Hence, we’ve listed down the top 10 features one we should look forward to in the Android 6.0 Marshmallow.
App Permissions have undergone a significant upgrade as users will be able to choose to accept or deny a specific permission for an app, as opposed to the current versions of Android where users are forced to accept all permissions that an app asks.
In the upcoming Android M, users will get notifications asking for app permissions only in cases when they are using a specific function in an app.
Improved web experience with customized Chrome tabs
Several features have also been introduced to enhance the web browsing experience. Chrome Custom tabs, a new feature in the upcoming Android Marshmallow, will allow users to include web views within a particular app, thereby negating the need to switch to the Chrome browser on your phone, as the browser will run atop the app.
In addition, Chrome Custom tab will automatically match itself with the colors and fonts of the app it is being used with.
With the introduction of this feature, users will able to make their payments using near-field communications (NFC) capability with a simple tap on their smartphone near a supporting NFC terminal. According to Google, when a user adds his/her card details, a virtual account number will be created to make payments. Hence, your actual card details are not shared during any transaction, thus making the whole process rather secure.
The company claims that the service will work with over 700,000 retailers in the US and will come pre-installed on devices from AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile.
Native Fingerprint support
Given the rise of modern day smartphones featuring fingerprint scanners and the ever growing demand for added security, Android Marshmallow will standardize fingerprint sensor support as the company is working with various devices to develop a standard API to work with these sensors. Apart from unlocking your device, the fingerprint sensor will also be used to authorize an Android Pay transaction and other store purchases.
Power management features with DOZE
One of the perennial issues with a modern day smartphone is its battery life. To rectify the issue to a certain extent, a new feature called Doze has will be introduced with Android M. The feature will try to enhance battery life of a device by reducing the amount of power it consumes while in an idle state. The company claims to have achieved twice as much battery life by deploying the feature on a Nexus 9.
USB Type-C Support
The upcoming will also offer support to the recently introduced USB Type C. It allows for much faster charging compared to the microUSB standard. If optimized, Google claims USB Type-C will allow up to 3-5 times faster charging speeds as than the standard microUSB charging cables.
Google Now gets a feature addition called ‘Now on Tap,’ which basically shows users contextual with a mere tap. Hence, this would add more functionality to Google Now making it smarter, offering contextual information on the go based on what a user is doing by tapping the Home button.
Advanced Memory Management
The upcoming Android M will also offer a new and updated RAM manager that can be accessed via the Settings menu and allows a user to see the device’s RAM usage over a specific duration. It also shows the amount of free RAM, allowing users to see how much RAM a particular app is consuming in detail.
Rotating Home Screen
Last but not the least, Marshmallow will give users the option to view their Home Screen in both portraits as well as landscape mode. Up until now, Android devices were deprived of this feature, though that is all about to change with the forthcoming Android OS.
Apart from the above-mentioned features, Android M will also include better Copy/Paste functionality, Direct Share feature has been upgraded which will allow users to share using a single click along with optimized volume controls.
Do share your thoughts with us about the Android 6.0 Marshmallow and the features we’ve discussed. Whether they’ll add to the overall user experience with improved functionality or are they just a mere gimmick?