Android Planet dives into Android 12’s first images to pick out all the details and see what it means for Android’s future.
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The first Android 12 images
The first screenshots of Android 12 have surfaced. Whether the screenshots are real is not certain, but the source can be trusted. XDA Developers has viewed a document about the next version of the operating system and is sharing images from that document. A number of things stand out in this.
1. New color: probably a theme
The first thing that strikes you about the screenshots is the color. We have not seen the gray / beige complexion in the mobile operating system before. In terms of accessibility, it seems like a big step backwards, with dark gray letters on a light gray background.
However, these are probably not the standard colors of the new Android. In a previous rumor you could read that Android 12 may get more extensive theme settings. With these themes you not only change the background and icons, but also color the entire system. Includes apps. This gray / beige complexion is probably an example of how the whole system changes with it.
2. Widgets are similar to iOS
The widgets are being overhauled with a new design, giving them a more uniform look. The new design is very reminiscent of the widgets recently introduced in iOS. iOS has borrowed the idea of widgets from Android, so the design goes back and forth between the two operating systems until they are more and more similar.
In addition, the conversation widget is introduced. This widget bundles recent messages, missed calls and activity statuses. In Android 11 conversations are already separated from other notifications, so this widget seems like a logical next step to put more emphasis on contact with others.
3. New interface for the notification panel
Google does not seem to know what to do with the notification panel, because with every major update, the design is overhauled. That is confusing for users. This time, Google appears to be reducing the number of quick settings icons again, from six to four. This gives you larger and clearer buttons for WiFi and Bluetooth, for example.
In combination with the extra rounded corners of the notifications, the notification panel in Android 12 is very similar to Samsung’s One UI 3.0.
4. More privacy options
Android 12 finally seems to be getting new privacy options and warnings that have been delayed for far too long. At the top right you can always see whether your camera or microphone is being addressed. Tapping on it will show you which app is currently using or recently activated your camera or microphone.
The leaked screenshots also give us a look at the settings of Android, which contains the options to completely switch off the camera and microphone.
5. Lots of white space
What is also striking in the screenshots is how much empty space Google uses in the new design. Google has a clear trend in its designs for Android and the Google apps, adding a lot of white space with a redesign. Everything will be compressed again in a later update. Android 12 is back on the minimalist side.
Later this month we expect the first developer version of Android 12 and more information about the features and appearance of the update. Until then, many are still waiting for Android 11.
Check the extensive Android 11 update overview to see if your phone is being updated. In the Android 11 review (and accompanying video below) we talk to you about all the innovations and improvements.