The Android 11 beta version has finally been released, and it is available for everyone to download. The OS version provides Android users an early glimpse at what to expect from the next update that will launch later this year.
After calling off the Google I/O 2020 conference, which has been scheduled for May, the company then planned to reveal the Android 11 beta during an online-only event on June 3rd, which has also been delayed because of the protests taking place across the United States and around the world.
A Quiet Release
For the same reason, Google has given up an event and quietly released the Android 11 beta accompanied by some short-form videos and web pages that users can read instead, the Android developers’ team explained in a blog post. To download the beta update, click here.
However, remember that the Android 11 beta is normally only available for owners of the Pixel 2 and newer Pixel devices; this is the first time Google Pixel and Pixel XL owners have been left out. This, though, has some reason for it as the Android team only made those phones compatible with the Android 10 update due to many requests.
Simply put, if this is the end of the road for the original Pixel series’ Android upgrades, this is also the first time we see it. It also means that if you own another type of Android device, you’ll have to wait until the official launch of the update, which will take place later this year.
Along with the announcement of the Android 11 beta, the event was supposed to also reveal the Google Pixel 4a. After the conference was canceled, a report from a German site that made the rounds of the web suggested it could launch alongside the official version of Android 11.
What to expect in Android 11?
We first saw Android 11 when its first developer preview was released in late February, which was earlier than the previous year. According to the tech giant, the public Android 11 beta has tried to highlight messaging chats, so they do not get lost in lots of notifications.
The notification panel will receive a dedicated ‘Conversations’ section, which will have shortcuts to create reminders or even launch it in a pop-out ‘Bubble.’ The upcoming update also enhances keyboard suggestions with apps that employ Autofill and Input Method Editors. Voice control accessibility also gets upgraded as it will generate labels and access points that are applicable to what is taking place on the screen.
For those users who use a lot of smart home devices and control them from their phone or even just switches between headphones and speakers, the update has centralized everything under a ‘Device Controls’ section, which users can get to by long-pressing the power button.
Obviously, Android 11 will also have some adjustments to privacy; for instance, if users haven’t opened an app in a while, the OS will automatically reset its permissions and, upon launch, ask users about their preference.