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Android N gets its third preview release with a low-latency VR mode

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Google announced at its I/O conference that Android N’s first ‘beta quality build’ is now out for you to test. Unlike the regular cycle of events, this year’s Android version came long before I/O making it the first build to see such a fate.

The new build that Google announced today is the third public preview of Android N from the company. The first preview hit users a few months ago making it the first preview of N to arrive as an over-the-air update. And while the first two builds were very much usable, without many bugs, Google says it’s still working on the operating system and optimizing it for the best user experience.

The latest build of N, just like its previous versions, is compatible with Nexus 6, 9, 5X, 6P, Nexus Player, Pixel C and Android One (General Mobile 4G).  If you own any of these devices and want a first-hand experience of Google’s newest Android version, head right here.

We saw Google unveil many new features of Android N today at its I/O conference. Some of them were either rumoured or confirmed already, though. For example, the new operating system allows multi-window support, comes with updates to the graphics API and includesf a fast just-in-time compiler that is capable of resulting in significant performance gains. Apps on N also take up less space and install 75 percent faster.

The update process has also been changed completely. Your device will now download and set up an update, if available, in the background and then replace the image when you restart your device. This means you will no longer have to wait for an update to install.

Google also announced that Android N will bring down the latency of virtual reality to the least possible using a special VR mode. The company says that this will be achieved by providing VR apps with exclusive access to the device’s processor cores when they are in the foreground combining this with an improved sensor pipeline.

Using this, Google claims to be able to bring down the Nexus 6P VR latency to about 20 milliseconds, which is the best we can achieve right now. This will result in a more natural head movement-to-visual experience. You will now get much better performance while using a VR headset if you are running Android N. The company said that it will certify the handsets that are VR-ready and its very own Nexus 6P is the first to get this certification.

You also get many new features in this mode including alarms and incoming calls which will be displayed on 3D cards.

Google hasn’t revealed a fixed release date for its newest operating system but the company says that the official version will be out late this summer.

Google-I/O-2016


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