This year Google I/O took place on the 11th and 12th of May with some big announcements.
The event revealed some notable statements for Android developers:
- Exciting new features to make Android app development easier
- Experience the latest wearable developments
- Enhancements to developer tools
- Updated Google wallet
Read more on what Google announced at the event and happy building your next Android project!
Google I/O announcements are mainly for developers at the conference. The most important announcements made by Google were about artificial intelligence (AI) and Android OS.
Android 13 Beta
Android 13 is here. Your applications can make use of the latest security features, including access to paired devices, media files, and photo selection.
You can make your application more robust by only accessing the features you need. For example, if you like to customize the way your app looks, you can access a customized theme and use app-specific language assistance.
Additionally, you can now create better apps with new standards such as Bluetooth LE Audio and HDR video. You can also trial the Android 13 Beta on certain foldables, tablets, and phones.
Google launched a beta for Google Compose 1.2 in order to fix one of its most well-known bugs.
Jetpack Compose is a Google Chrome extension that will launch fonts easily. You can also set fallbacks to work with the font.
The latest version of Jetpack Compose (version 1.1.0) now supports screen magnification for Android users in the text fields.
Android and iOS have been taken into consideration when developing the Magnifier, which provides users with a more convenient and accurate experience.
Google also announced some changes to their toolset for Android development. The newest version of the app, Android Studio Electric Eel, is a Canary release, meaning it’s not yet ready for public consumption. Another beta version of the app, Android Studio Dolphin, is currently in use by more people than previous versions.
Developers can use the Dolphin Android Studio app to see how often composables on their page can be re-written using the Layout Inspector. If they are able to recompose many times, it is likely worth optimizing that composable.
Dolphin provides developers with tools to preview the animations rapidly and provide support for different screen size devices.
Android Studio Electric Eel contains a re-composition highlighter, which predicts where and when the parts of various phrases need to be recombined.
Google introduces Flutter 3 at its I/O 2022 event. The cross-platform apps development suite has new assistance for Linux and macOS, which will enable more apps to be built in half the time.
In this update, Firebase integration and the iOS Casual Games Toolkit are quickened, a more stable code is modified to provide faster compilation speeds when you’re developing on Macs.
With Flutter 3, you will get better support for Google’s Material Design Language. It also coexists with the launch of Dart SDK 2.17.
Large Screens and Foldables
This new Android 12L will allow users to have more screen space on larger screens like tablets and foldables. For example, you can use column-based layouts or the split-screen mode.
Android 13 provides a new way to build UIs
Google offers three starter layouts that are used to start projects with large screens:
- Supporting Panel
- List Detail View
These are beginner level projects for basic use cases. New breakpoints that will help you change your UI depending on the space for various devices are:
Jetpack DragAndDrop and SlidingPaneLayout libraries are included on the JetpackWindowManger 1.1 library to help you create fluent UIs for a more immersive experience.
Health Connect was created to not only explore but also share health data quickly and safely across devices. It is a joint collaboration between Google, Samsung, and Fitbit.
Stop struggling to connect applications, and hand Health Connect all of your health data. The Health Connect SDK can be downloaded as a Jetpack Library.
Jetpack Health API allows users to manage their fitness data and gives them full knowledge of the information collected. Health Connect is a health and fitness management app that collects data from all Android apps in an on-device datastore, letting the user know about everything it collects.
The Firebase team is using I/O to showcase the new Firebase Extension events. The ability to have extension’s functionality improved with code is a great way for developers to both expand the functionality and improve their product.
Now, using Firebase you can deploy your web applications that use Angular Universal and Next.JS with a single command: “firebase deploy.” It is expected that this support for other web frameworks will come soon as well.
Firebase has improved its support for Crashlytics down to the effort needed to get started, receive alerts from Crashlytics, log on-demand fatal issues in applications and group Flutter crashes more.
With the new Play Integrity API, Firebase provides better App Check integration, Swift language, and new functionalities.
Google Wallet was the world’s first mobile wallet app, and grew a lot in the time that it was available. But then Google Pay came out in 2018, so now Google is making a return to their old wallet, to better suit the times.
Users can store their debit and credit cards digitally in Google Wallet, replacing the need for a physical wallet. People are now testing this service in the USA to replace their driver’s license.
The new features of Google Wallet include preset pass types such as boarding passes, loyalty cards, vaccination cards, and gift cards.
You’ll soon be able to use your Play Store account as a way to authenticate your Google Wallet account.
Google plans to launch new updates to Android Vitals outside of the Play Console. The API will provide programmatic access to important metrics and data, such as stack traces and crashes.
Furthermore, Google is looking to simplify using Android Vitals with other crash reporting tools. As a result of this, you can now connect your Play app and Crashlytics app, giving you the ability to receive Play track data in Crashlytics.
Crashlytics and Vitals are going to take on the same name in the near future, which will make using them together easier.
Vitals now displays if a crash occurred in the background or foreground. If it was in the foreground, Vitals will also show you how to reproduce the crash to help developers improve their software.
The Wear OS 3.0 platform is a newly created Google-Samsung partnership that streams the most exclusive wearables from both companies. Currently available on the Galaxy Watch 4 series, more devices are expected to be released with this platform in the future.
Users will be able to contact emergency services from the wrist. This is due to the Emergency SOS feature, coming on Wear OS watches powered by Samsung.
Google’s new Wear OS watches are set to be released soon. In the coming months, Google Assistant will be available on some of these watches and always-on recognition will make it easier for users to manage the tasks in their day.
Google has launched the Google Play SDK index, a web tool that shows you what apps use what packages, and what permissions they have.
Developers can now submit their special offer or event to the LiveOps beta, and have it featured on the Play Store. However, there are some limitations at the moment, but developers can register for the possibility to join.
The Play Store will have the capacity to support fifty store listings. These small variations depend on a user’s location and interests or regional ad campaign.
Using the Google Assistant SDK, developers can create an App Action to perform basic tasks with voice commands through the Google Assistant.
Wear OS will get Google Assistant support in 2022. This means that there will be a robust selection of apps with which to talk to your computer/smartwatch, such as ordering a pizza or asking for directions.
This organization plans to help integrate health and fitness in-built indexes into existing apps, which will help users be more disciplined and stay on track with their workouts.
Google is developing a new feature called “Shortcut API for Android for Cars.” Shortcuts will provide voice access integration to developer programs on the Android Automotive or Auto platform.
The developers are constantly working on bettering the AI, but it’s not perfect. They have to rely on machine learning to create a better experience for our users.
Google has announced that it will now offer app installation suggestions made up of products from their Google’s Brandless. These new features are available for apps that have AI-based App Actions.
People can use Assistant to find the apps they will need. With App Install Suggestions and Brandless Queries, Assistant recommends the best app for your needs.
Android’s new Baseline Profiles offer libraries and applications metadata about the usage frequency of their code before compilation, allowing Android to optimize runtime and enhance user experience.
With the addition of baseline profiles, Google has seen faster app start-up times. Google is already employing baseline profiles inside Jetpack and has added baselines to famous libraries like Compose and Fragments to better ensure an efficient user experience.
Google has come up with innovations like Android and Firebase. With these, the development process becomes more efficient and convenient.