Most Android customers are strolling round with smartphones rocking Android 10 or decrease, however not you. No sir.
Instead, you’re certainly one of the fortunate ones with a handset that goes all the means up to 11 – and solely a few of the greatest Android telephones permit that. That’s one louder than Android 10, in accordance to our scribbled calculations, which implies you’ll have a plethora of latest features at your disposal.
We’re going to check out a few of these fancy new features under, so you can guarantee you’re making the most of Google’s newest and best cellular OS. If you’re not presently utilizing an Android 11 smartphone however merely need to satiate your curiosity, that’s okay too.
From souped-up messaging to hidden Easter eggs, display recording and extra, there’s lots to uncover, so let’s leap straight in.
1. A little bit extra dialog
Our telephones can turn into a convoluted mess of notifications starting from direct messages, WhatsApp group updates, recreation notifications, breaking information and far, far more.
It’s straightforward to miss essential messages amongst this barrage of knowledge, which is the purpose the new conversations tab in Android 11 is an absolute godsend for bringing some a lot wanted organisation into your life.
Swiping down from the top in Android 11 now splits data into two teams: notifications and conversations. The former are basic notifications from apps, whereas the latter are made up of all notifications from chat apps corresponding to WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and Twitter, permitting you to prioritize them.
2. Rather less dialog
While it’s good to communicate, all of us have not less than just a few WhatsApp teams with keyboard-happy members that don’t fairly know when to put their telephones down to embrace some much-needed silence. Thankfully, Android 11 lets you prioritize essential messages whereas silencing much less essential ones – suppose pixelated Facebook memes despatched from your mum, for instance.
Long-pressing a dialog in the dropdown will current three choices: Priority, Alerting and Silent.
Priority conversations will at all times seem at the top, that includes a yellow spotlight round their icon. You may select precedence conversations to ignore the Do Not Disturb rule, which is useful if you’re anticipating an essential message.
Alerting treats notifications in the regular means, whereas Silent will maintain specific threads from alerting your phone in any respect. They’ll nonetheless seem in your notifications, thoughts, however at the backside of the listing. Making use of all three choices ought to assist take away the headache related to chatty WhatsApp teams, whereas nonetheless bringing essential messages to your consideration.
3. Blowing bubbles
While we’re on the topic of conversations, Android 11 additionally has built-in help for chat bubbles – a characteristic that can be acquainted to Facebook Messenger customers.
When you obtain a brand new message, swipe down from the top, and verify your chat notification. If the app helps bubbles, there can be a small circle in the bottom-right nook of the notification. Tap it, and you’ll create a chat bubble – a floating round icon that stays on top of anything you’re doing on the display.
New messages will seem from the bubble with out taking over your complete display; tapping the message permits you to reply. It’s significantly helpful if you need to maintain a dialog while persevering with with one other process or watching a video. To dismiss a bubble, merely maintain it down and drag it to the ‘X’ that seems at the backside of the display.
4. Screen recording is (lastly) right here
Built-in screen-recording performance is one thing we’ve been ready to see baked into Android for years, and whereas it’s been out there in handsets corresponding to OnePlus for some time, we’re comfortable to see it lastly included as normal on this newest model of Android.
Simply pull down from the top to increase the notification bar’s fast settings, and faucet the Screen Record icon. When you do, you’ll have the possibility to select whether or not you need to report audio utilizing the microphone or the system’s audio. Once that’s performed, a three-second timer will seem, at the start is recorded.
While our important use case can be recording tech tutorials, it may be useful for folks wanting to present mother and father how to navigate by Android’s difficult settings, or for these wanting to report gameplay throughout a very hectic gaming session.
5. A second probability
We’ve all had the expertise of swiping away at a notification the second it pops up. Sometimes, it is out of sheer intuition, honed by your primal, panther-like reflexes. At different instances it is likely to be on account of recognizing an electronic mail containing phrases corresponding to ‘overdue’ or ‘Christmas plans’, which you swipe away in sheer panic.
Unfortunately, although, these mis-swipes can show a ache, particularly if you rely on notifications as a type of to-do listing. Thankfully, Android 11 contains an possibility that permits you to shortly convey up your notification historical past. Tap the History button at the backside of the notification shade, and you’ll be handled to all your notifications from the previous 24 hours, so you can simply see what you’ve missed.
6. Embrace the darkness
We’re enormous followers of darkish themes in apps, since they have a tendency to be much less harsh on the eyes, and might even assist squeeze out just a little additional battery life if you’re utilizing a phone with an OLED show.
If you end up continuously swapping between darkish and light-weight themes, nevertheless, then Android 11 will make your life simply that little bit simpler by providing up the potential to mechanically schedule darkish themes.
You can select to embrace the darkness from sundown to dawn, sparing your eyes from publicity to harsh blue lights in the night, or go for a time of your selecting. Simply pull down the Quick Settings menu from the top of the display, hit the Dark theme icon, and choose the scheduling possibility of your alternative.
7. Pin ‘n’ Share
One of the issues we’ve at all times beloved most about Android (sure, we’ve got a listing), is its sturdy sharing features, which had been round lengthy earlier than iPhone customers had been handled to related talents.
The solely draw back is that deciding on what app you need to share is usually a messy course of. If you have a lot of apps, you would possibly find yourself scrolling by just a few pages of choices earlier than deciding on the one you need to share to.
Android 11 makes this course of simpler by permitting you to pin your favourite/most-used sharing apps to the entrance of the pack, saving you treasured seconds every time you share one thing. Simple, but extremely efficient.
Android 11 arrives with improved media controls which are much less intrusive than earlier than. For starters, they now seem in the Quick Settings bar in the type of a mini-control setup that has the identify of what’s enjoying, together with primary play/pause, earlier and subsequent monitor choices.
The new positioning is nice, because it makes the space under much less cluttered, leaving extra room for your notifications. Drag down additional, and the media controls increase to the top of the display, offering extra choices – corresponding to the potential to ‘like’ a monitor.
If you have a podcast app, YouTube, and/or a music app corresponding to Spotify open, you may swipe throughout for particular person controls for every app, which is good news for auditory multitaskers.
9. App recommendations (Pixel solely)
Pixel homeowners have a chance to gloat right here, since this characteristic is presently solely suitable with Google’s Pixel telephones.
If you’re presently wielding a Pixel system with Android 11, you can let Google’s AI smarts predict which app you’re possible to use subsequent, based mostly on previous utilization at totally different instances of the day. For instance, if you have a tendency to get up your mind with a cup of espresso and cat GIFs each morning, then you’ll discover the Reddit app included in the dock.
Later on in the day, round lunch time, it is likely to be changed by the Twitter icon, as a result of that’s when you’re possible to go off on a post-lunch rant about the state of the in-game financial system in Destiny 2 (or no matter your routine occurs to be).
You even have the possibility to take away sure apps from the choice pool or flip off the characteristic fully, however it’s positively price attempting out if you have a Pixel in your pocket.
10. Power button 2.0
Android 11 supercharges your Power button, permitting it to do greater than merely flip off or restart your phone. Holding it down now launches a brand new display, which provides additional choices past the easy energy ones.
These embrace a shortcut to utilizing Google Pay, making it even simpler to shortly purchase lockdown lunch sandwiches from your native grocery store of alternative. Beneath that, Android 11 may even pre-populate a brand new Home part with up to six of your related sensible gadgets, letting you shortly and simply management your lights, thermostat and extra, immediately. Of course, you can edit this listing with your most-used gadgets, if you so want.
Overall, that is certainly one of our favourite additions to Android 11, because it lets you entry helpful features with out having to fireplace up separate apps. Nicely performed, Google.
11. Befriend a cat
Android has lengthy been well-known for its built-in Easter eggs, and model 11 isn’t any exception. Follow the steps under, and you’ll quickly be the proud companion to a bunch of digital feline buddies.
- Fire up Settings, then go to ‘About Phone’
- Tap ‘Android Version’
- On this display, repeatedly hit ‘Android Version’
- Crank up the quantity dial that seems all the means to 11
- After three makes an attempt, you ought to see the quantity 11 pop up, with a small cat emoji showing at the backside of the display
- Hold the energy button
- Select ‘Add controls’
- Choose ‘See other apps’ at the backside
- Choose ‘Cat controls’
- Select the water bubbler, meals and toy
- Return to the energy menu display
- Select the down arrow subsequent to ‘Home’ and choose ‘Cat controls’
- Swipe throughout the water bubble to fill it up, faucet the meals bowl, and faucet the cat
- Question what you’re doing with your life whereas ready for a digital numbered cat to be added to your assortment