Google has a surprise for its Pixel smartphone owners today, with Beta 1 of Android Q released for early adopters as well as a preview SDK for developers.
The mobile operating system landscape is rapidly changing and this year it will go through the biggest changes in history with both 5G and foldable phones arriving in 2019. Google has made its new Android Q release available in pre-release form very early, but the new OS will have a few cornerstones including improved privacy for users on Android going forward.
Starting with Android Q users will have more control over when apps can get your location. With previous versions of Android, apps can only get location once the app itself has asked your permission, and you've granted it. Android Q changes things by giving users the ability to never give their location to apps, only when the app is in use (and running) or all the time (running in the background).
Android Q has support for both foldable and "innovative new screens" according to Google, which will deliver a totally new experience to consumers when they start rolling (or is that folding) out later this year. Google has made some adjustments in Android Q that make the new OS ready for the world of foldable devices.
Another new thing in Android Q is that Google is "enabling new ways to bring users into your apps and streamlining the experience as they transition from other apps". There are changes to Sharing shortcuts and the Settings panel, connectivity changes and more. Check out the full list of changes in Android Q here.