Saturday, March 6

a leak offers a first glimpse of a strange redesign

The next version of Android is leaked. Screenshots illustrate the expected novelties, as well as a redesign of the interface which seems rather strange.

If Google follows its schedule, Android 12 should be unveiled soon with its first Developer Preview. We are expecting a lot of new things, and so are you, and we are therefore impatient to learn the program concocted by Google for this major update of the system.

The XDA-Developers site, often very well informed on these subjects, believes it has obtained an internal document sent between Google and the manufacturers to present the new features of Android 12 with screenshots. We can see a new interface for the system, as well as several expected new features. The site states that it was not able to fully verify the authenticity of the document, but to have been able to confirm that the document in question exists, and that the screenshots presented here are indeed taken from this document.

Goodbye transparency

The first element that shocks when seeing these screenshots is therefore this new design which completely abandons the effect of transparency behind the notifications to display a solid limestone gray background, which therefore conceals the screen you were on before shooting the blind. The quick actions in shortcut at the top are now only 4, compared to 6 on Android 11. The icons for Wi-Fi, economy mode or airplane mode have also been revised and are now in a square when they are not activated . The aesthetic reminds us more of MIUI or ColorOS than Google’s Android.

The notifications themselves no longer seem to take the width of the phone, and are now placed in more rounded bubbles. We can also observe a new zone in the status bar which indicates that the microphone and the camera are activated. By pressing it, a window appears to say more, and to configure these elements.

More privacy options

This new area is the first element, but not the only one, that we notice in these screenshots and which illustrate that privacy will be at the center of this Android 12.

The new privacy settings seem to make it easier to turn off the smartphone’s camera or microphone altogether.

Conversations et widgets

Apple has made widgets the great novelty of iOS 14. Obviously, this function has been integrated into Android since its inception, but it had been put aside by Google over the versions. With Android 12, Google seems to want to give widgets a facelift with a new menu to place them on the desktop.

The opportunity to discover a new widget called “conversations”, which can be placed as a shortcut and which allows you to see recent messages, missed calls or even the status of a contact to know if he is online or no. Based on the icons shown in these screenshots, the feature appears to support Facebook Messenger, and WhatsApp. Hopefully all services, like Signal, can connect to it freely.

According to XDA-Developers, “conversations” widgets would be mandatory with Android 12 for all smartphone manufacturers. To verify this, we will have to wait to get our hands on the Compatibilty Definition Document, a document that Google updates with each version of Android to indicate the conditions for installing its system on devices.

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