New Features :: Android L / 5.0 (Developer Preview)

Android L developer preview has been available since June this year and Google released the latest build of the preview version in August (LPV81C). With this version, Google has introduced Material Design that brings some nice visual and functional enhancements to android OS. I have compiled some screenshots and new features in this post. If you like it go ahead and update your Nexus 5 to Android L (I have covered the steps to update in another post).

  • New lock screen with quick access to Phone and Camera; and enhanced notifications.

IMG_0760

  • Different looking icons in the bottom bar of the screen. Functionality remains similar to Android 4.4.

Screenshot_2014-09-29-17-54-36

  • Pressing the power button no longer give options to put the phone in Airplane Mode or in vibrate / silent mode.

Screenshot_2014-09-29-17-55-22

  • To put the phone in Vibrate or Do Not Disturb (DND) mode press the volume rocker; clicking on the bell (left side) on the screen puts it in vibrate mode and clicking on the right most side puts it in the silent  or DND mode. There are different options as well for DND mode as shown in below picture.

Screenshot_2014-09-29-17-55-12   Screenshot_2014-09-29-20-07-31

  • Swiping down once brings the notification and doing it twice brings quick settings. One improvement here is that clicking on Wi-Fi or Bluetooth does not take you to settings window any more and directly turns it on or off. One thing missing here is that there is no way to ignore all notifications in single swipe. You will have to do it individually for each notification.

Screenshot_2014-09-29-17-55-39  Screenshot_2014-09-29-18-01-27

  • Material Design in Dialer app with few welcome changes. App now shows 3 tabs – Speed Dial, Recents and Contacts. Also number dialer hovers around all the tabs for quick access.

Screenshot_2014-09-29-18-00-41   Screenshot_2014-09-29-18-00-31

  • No ‘Widgets’ tab in App Drawer. Widgets can be added by long pressing on the home screen(s).

Screenshot_2014-09-29-18-02-56   Screenshot_2014-09-29-18-03-05

  • Battery stats now show more details like how many hours will it last based on your current usage. One other remarkable change noticed is vastly improved battery life.

Screenshot_2014-09-30-06-56-16

  • Other changes like Material Design in Settings app and in Sharing mode.

Screenshot_2014-09-30-06-56-37   Screenshot_2014-09-29-18-06-08

  • Update – 10/6/2014 – Noticed another improvement in the UI. Now if you are using Google maps and receive a call, it no longer takes you out of the map apps to phone; rather shows a notification on the top to accept and decline the call. I appreciate Google took notice of this annoyance present in earlier versions of android and corrected it in Android L.
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