Use your face to make your way around your mobile.
We heard news about Android 12 only a few months after the release of Android 11 and we're back with even more juicy information for you.
We like to keep you in the loop so here we are with yet another exciting update. This one is all about your face and it's a huge win for accessibility.
Introducing Camera Switch, the Android 12 feature that recognises the facial expressions you make and lets you map them into your navigation settings.
Every look, glance or raised eyebrow will be recognised by your Android mobile and we're here to tell you how and why.
It starts with a look.
The Camera Switch feature of Android 12 lets you control your Android with your face – no matter which model you’ve got.
The early birds who’ve already downloaded the Android 12 beta will find this feature buried deep within their accessibility settings.
Camera Switch works by identifying facial expressions that you make. Whether that’s a glance upwards, left, right or a shocked raise of your left eyebrow.
These movements can be mapped to your navigation settings, making it easy to make your way around your mobile, without doing any of the heavy lifting.
Head to Settings > Accessibility > Switch Access > Settings > Camera Switch.
Take opening your mouth for example. With this new feature, you’ll be able to map this facial expression to open the Notifications Panel on your mobile – which we think is some funky Matilda-like stuff.
That’s not all though people, there are a whole bunch of settings you can set up to make it easier to get around your mobile.
In a recent blog post, Google confessed that they were revamping hundred of their existing emoji to make them better for everyone.
There are a number of different emoji that have had a little polish, including the masked smiley face.
Until COVID-19 hit, the masked emoji was associated with being sick, but of course now it means something entirely different!
It’s become a necessity in our every day lives and is now a sign of staying safe throughout the pandemic.
Google have recognised this and redesigned this emoji to represent wearing a mask in a more positive light.
This next one if for you foodies who are making the most of restaurants opening back up. Lots of the food emoji will be redesigned to look more appealing and aesthetically pleasing.
Overall, the new emoji will appear brighter and better so that users can see them more clearly. Lots of them will be universally relevant no matter which country you’re from.
For example, the American-style pie will be redesigned to make sense no matter where you’re using your mobile. While it won’t quite be a shepherds pie, it’ll definitely slot into your conversations easier.
Google have even stated that some of the redesigned emoji will change colour when you switch to dark mode on your mobile. We for one can’t wait to see what Android 12 has in store…
John Prosser is a name you may never have heard of, but we assure you he’s certainly someone to know. He’s a well known tipster in the mobile world and is the little birdy that revealed Android 12’s revamped design.
Of course, as with all the rumours we’ve gathered up, this is just a rumour but it’s a pretty great one.
We’ve seen hints along the way of the design elements of Android 12, but Prosser takes it one step further.
Prosser refers to a slide that was apparently leaked from Google IO 2021 and states that Android 12 will bring beauty, security and privacy.
Not to sound shallow or anything, but it’s the beauty we’re interested in right now. Looks certainly aren’t everything but they’re everything we want to hear about in this case.
These new leaks are centred around some very gorgeous looking pastel colours, and we all love a good pastel shade. There’s something so summery about pastel colours – especially pastel green which we’re expected to see.
It’s not only colours that we’re interested in, apparently there will be stunning changes to the notification buttons, the size of the clock and the way alerts appear on your display.
None of these changes have appeared in the developer preview of Android 12, so we’re running on speculation here. We’ll have to wait until the full launch of Android 12 to see these visuals in action.
What's new for the Play Store?
We’ve seen a few little secrets let slip by Google, who stated in a blog post that the new update would make things easier when it comes to the app store.
Android have safety measures in place that ensure users don’t run into any trouble when dealing with apps.
Android 12 is said to make it easier for people to use other app stores on their devices, without compromising these pre-existing safety measures. This is great news for everyone, especially those of you with little ones.
There hasn’t been any further discussions on how this will work, but TechRadar seem to think it may involve making options more well known and visible. If you’re an app fanatic and love to download anything and everything, this is great for you.
There's always room for improvement.
The new update is also rumoured to make it easier for Google to deliver some key improvements for you. XDA Developers have noticed that Android plan to make Android Runtime a Mainline module in Android 12.
This sounds super-complicated, but when you break it down, it simply means that the company will be able to deliver more OS updates through the Play Store.
This may bring more updates directly to you, so you can keep up with the ever-changing mobile world.
It's time to hibernate.
iOS 14 saw a new feature that stores unused apps in an app gallery. This way when we needed the apps, they’d be there, but they wouldn’t clutter up our home screen.
Another thing XDA Developers have discovered is that Android 12 could bring a something similar.
This new (suspected) feature will ‘hibernate’ apps that are open but not in use. We’re all guilty of having lots of apps open at once, so it’s nice to know that this update could take care of this for us. Plus, it’ll be amazing for your battery!
According to Tech Radar, a leak for this hibernation app suggests that the app cache will actually be cleared. Sounds like the new update is as handy as it is cool!
Is double tap back?
TechRadar have heard another rumour that’ll get Android users more excited than ever. Apparently, Android 12 could restore the double-tap-on-the-back shortcut, which makes taking screenshots and using Google Assistant so much easier.
We all know the struggles of wanting to use two apps at once, whether it’s Maps and music or YouTube and messages.
TechRadar have also identified a leak that suggests Android 12 will bring improvements to the split-screen modes on your phone – multitasking just got an upgrade!
Sharing the WiFi.
iPhone users recently saw a feature that lets you share your Wi-Fi password with others nearby you. According to TechRadar, another leak suggests that Android 12 will bring something similar.
Wave goodbye to reading out long complicated passwords!
Dark theme will now extend to toast messages. While you might be thinking of warm bread with lots of Lurpak, toast messages are actually the little pop-ups that appear at the bottom of the screen.
This means you can now view these little pop ups while in dark theme and will no longer need to squint your eyes while your phone sits on full brightness.
Currently, Android lets you share content to any app and open links with any supported app.
Android 12 is set to make this process a little easier by adding 'verified links' that will open directly in the correct app, rather than the dialogue box saying 'open with' appearing.
We recently saw home screen widgets appear on iOS14 and everyone on the internet went wild for them - it wasn't long before Android caught a whiff of this and did their own take.
Android 12 is set to bring a whole new menu with rounded corners which will make your Android phone look smooth and fresh - just like Apple's widgets.
This is one that Android fans will love. The new, upcoming update will allow you to take a screenshot of something and swipe it either left OR right.
This has caused a lot of frustration for Android users who've had to deal with only being able to swipe their screenshot one way for so long.
Android 12 will now show you how much battery you have left on your device and will also display a progress bar, rather than the traditional icon that you're familiar with.
The new bar will show a percentage above and a 'time remaining' estimate. This way you can work out just how long you need to charge your phone for and how long you've got left to enjoy your phone.
Look out Android fans…
We’ve got no confirmed dates for you right now and can’t say for sure when you can expect to see Android 12. TechRadar seem to think we will see the finished version in September, purely based on their previous updates.
If you fancy getting prepared and want to see what all the fuss is about, why not take a look at the Samsung Galaxy S21 today. Go on, we’ve got some great deals…