The operating system got a make-over and we’re loving it.

Big news people, Android 11 is official, and we’re so excited about its new and improved features that we just couldn’t wait to share them with you. A lot of manufacturers haven’t stated when their users will get the new system just yet, but it’s certainly something to look forward to.

After being announced way back in February, we’ve all been patiently waiting to hear more about it, and we can finally say that the OS is now being rolled out to a number of mobile phones. On 8th September this year, Android 11 was released on Google Pixel phones, but the rest of us have a little while to wait.

Nokia shared a Tweet announcing their excitement about Android 11 but with no specific date to say when their phones would see it. While the Tweet didn’t give too much away, we’re loving Nokia’s excitement.

Here’s a list of phones that are already compatible with Android 11. Don’t worry if your phone isn’t on the list just yet, after reading about the features it boasts, you’ll realise it’s worth the wait.

  • Google Pixel 2 / 2 XL
  • Google Pixel 3 / 3 XL
  • Google Pixel 3a / 3a XL
  • Google Pixel 4 / 4 XL
  • Google Pixel 4a / 4a 5G
  • Google Pixel 5

1) Become your own message manager.

Android 11 stores all your messages in one place and takes away the stress of trying to juggle multiple messaging apps at once. Some people are WhatsApp lovers, others use Facebook Messenger, while some stick to the classic text messages.

With Android 11 you can see, respond to, and control a number of different conversations with ease. All in one place. If you swipe down from the top of your screen, your notification bar will be split into two sections labelled notifications and conversations.

The point of this is that your message notifications will be grouped together, so you won’t ever miss anything important. You can also personalise it to only show conversations with people you prefer, rather than messages from everyone.

2) Create your own little bubbles.

This new feature lets you pin conversations, so they always appear on top of other apps and screens. This is a perfect feature for those of you who are often multitasking on your phone and flick from one app to the next.

A phone displaying the Chat Bubbles feature on Android 11.
Chat Bubbles lets you pin conversations for later. 

It’s also ideal if you get a text from someone then get distracted with the latest episode of your favourite TV show – Mandalorian fans out there – and forget to reply. Your message bubble will remain on screen, not big enough that it will disrupt what you’re doing, but not too small that you forget it’s there.

3) Become a director with fancy screen recording.

Android 11 delivers fancy screen recording that lets you capture whatever you’re looking at and save it as a video. You won’t need to use an extra app or go to any trouble, simply screen record, and get a perfect video with sound.

Android 11 demonstrating the screen recording feature.
Android 11 lets you screen record things and share them with friends!

If someone has uploaded yet another cute video of their dog on Instagram, you can screen record it and pass it on to spread the joy. Or, if you’ve seen something slightly bizarre on Facebook (because, let’s face it, there are lots of weird things on Facebook) you can screen record and share it to your own social media.

4) Make your replies smart.

If you’re a busy body and sometimes don’t have the time to reply to text messages, then the new smart reply feature is perfect. With Android 11 you can get suggested responses in your conversations, from simple phrases to relevant emoji – your texting just got smart.

Android 11 demonstrating the Smart Replies on a phone.
Smart Replies make it easier and faster to reply.

Plus, on Pixel devices, replies are suggested based on what’s been said in the conversation. So, if you get a text from your other half asking if you’re on your way home, your Pixel phone will suggest a smart reply such as ‘yes’ or ‘no’ or maybe even a thumbs up or thumbs down emoji.

5) Your voice is in control.

Android 11 brings some fantastic updates to Voice Access, making it faster and easier to use. If your hands are full or you need a little more help controlling and navigating your phone, you can setup Voice Access and complete tasks without lifting a finger.

Simply speak out loud and your phone will recognise your voice and do exactly as you ask. Plus, it works perfectly even if you’re offline!

6) It’s helpful around the house.

Android 11 makes tasks around the house seem so much simpler. This new update lets you connect to lots of different utilities like your heating and lights. If you press and hold the power button on your phone, you can see and manage your connected devices.

This means with the touch of a button, you could dim the lights while tucked up in bed, or crank up the heating when you’re feeling extra chilly on a cold Monday morning. It’s not laziness – it’s simply using your phone efficiently!

7) Control your media and entertainment.

If you’re listening to your favourite song while wearing headphones and giving the ultimate karaoke performance, your family might get jealous and want in on the action. With Android 11, you can change from your headphones to your speaker without missing a beat.

With one tap you can switch things up and listen to songs on other devices or watch videos on your TV – all without missing a minute of the action.

8) Enjoy Android 11 in your car.

Your car journeys will be truly revolutionised as Android Auto now works wirelessly with devices running Android 11. You can connect your phone to your car display and your Android apps will show up on screen.

The Android Auto feature being displayed in a car.
With Android 11 you can enjoy wireless fun in the car. 

You can tap to get driving directions to wherever you need to go or send text messages to let people know that you’re on your way. You can even make hands-free calls, letting you focus on your driving and enjoy yourself too.

9) Take control of your apps.

Android 11 lets you take control of your apps, making it your decision as to whether to give different applications permission to access sensitive data. For example, if an app wants access to your email address, you can simply say no – say goodbye to unwanted junk mail.

If you wanted to give permission to an app, but just one time, Android 11 lets you create one-time permissions. If you grant an app access to your mic, camera, or location but only for that one occasion, they will have to ask for permission again the next time.

A phone demonstrating the App permissions feature.
Take control of your apps with the new Android 11 software. 

If an app has fallen under your radar and you don’t want it to still have access to your data, Android 11 will let you reset permissions for any unused apps. Then if you change your mind, you can turn permissions back on.

10) Keep safe and secure.

With Android 11, Google Play make it their priority to keep your phone up to date with the latest security. You’ll get even more security and privacy fixes sent to your phone and they’ll update the same way that your other apps update.

This feature not only gives you peace of mind, but also ensures that your phone and the data you store, is kept safe and sound.

11) Stay connected to Bluetooth.

Android 11 brings a great feature that lets you keep Bluetooth activated on your phone, even when your phone has Airplane mode enabled. This means that if you’ve got your phone on Airplane mode, perhaps saving yourself some battery, you can still listen to your songs and keep connected.

This also works for hearing aids, meaning when you connect your audio from your phone to your hearing aids, you can enable Airplane mode without your audio being cut off.

Android is delivering once again.

Android 11 boasts some incredible features and is certainly something to get excited about. Like we’ve said, the dates are a little uncertain right now but after hearing about all these incredible updates, we’re sure it’ll be worth the wait.

Check out what Android 11 can do.

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