iOS & Android, News

Google I/O 2018 – Highlights for the Android Developers

Google I/O 2018 was held recently and concluded with a positive note on Android development ecosystem. This year’s annual conference was held in California where Google declared it’s Android, Google Assistant, and many other updates. All that I can say is that Android app developers are going to have a big time in the upcoming years.

The new updates in the Android system were announced by Chet Haase (Android ToolKit group), Romain Guy (Android Team) and Dan Sandler (System UI Team). The main updates are available for Android App Bundles to improve app development cycle. Some of the key updates that were discussed are:

Android Test

First Class Kotlin Support is now available in Android Testing. New APIs have been created to improve the readability. All these new updates are deployed to make android testing easy and usable anywhere.

See Also: Google is finally bringing Android apps to Chromebooks

Kotlin Performance Improvements

Kotlin is booming at such a pace that the key priority has been given to their improvement. With the latest updates, Kotlin is compatible to run with ART, D8, and R8. An amazing change has been brought with nullability notation coverage that will engage developers to utilize the APIs better.

Effortlessly Mockable Frameworks

The Android structures aka frameworks will be easy to mock now. Indeed, even the final and static strategies can be mocked effortlessly and that is definitely going to be a pleasant news for Android app developers.

JetPack Architecture

Google IO 2017 declared a few changes to the design and now they are available with the new updates. The changes are Lifecycle, View Model, Room, etc… The other small updates are made in the Refactor portion where the previous version naming retention is dropped and the Android documents are being renamed to Android.

Battery usage by the Apps

Battery performance has always been a key perspective for the Google developers. With the new updates, App standby bucket is deployed to understand the app usage and based on this, the user will be notified about the same. The users now have the advantage of making changes in the background on the Apps battery utilization.

Background Restrictions

In order to improve the privacy of users, the apps are not allowed to use the camera, microphone and rotary sensor in the background. Android mobile app development companies should remember this while developing new apps

Background Text Measurement

Text measurement turns out to be an expensive affair and also utilizes much of the resources as well. In order to reduce the resource utilization, the text required to do activities will be managed in the background. This helps in getting 80– 90% of the activity completed. A Pre-computed text should be called to execute the task, which spares both time and resources.

Magnifier Tool

A brand new API has been developed that permits mobile app developers to amplify the code or text that is in view.

Baseline Distance Handling

This new function update is actually a boon for the developers who regularly need to place the baselines of App Pages at a specific distance and it requires a lot of hard work. With this new update, all you have to do is to give the input and the Android toolkit will take care of the Baseline distance handling by itself.

Now, let’s take a look at the new features that can actually help android mobile app development companies to develop more engaging and interactive mobile apps.

Gesture-based Navigation System

It is actually time to say goodbye to button navigation. With all due respect, gesture-based navigation has stolen the thunder in Google IO 2018. This is a major evolution in the upcoming version of Android P, all of us have to set up the gesture navigation in the settings.

In the coming version of the Android P, you will definitely notice changes. The Home button will be an extended one in the center of the screen. Another main change you will notice is the way they can get to the list of last used applications. This new feature has been consolidated to save the time and now the system even recommends five significant apps and a search bar.

Battery-saving Features

Google has included two new battery-saving features to make sure that users are equipped with enough battery life in a single charge. The first is by introducing an Adaptive Battery. This is kind of a smart battery that learns from the utilization pattern and deploy the required countermeasures. A machine learning algorithm is the one that powers the adaptive battery, it keeps the most used applications active on CPU wake-up calls.

The remaining apps that are not regularly used are restricted from consuming the battery in the background. Another feature that has been introduced is adaptive brightness. It recognizes the pattern the user is following in Device Brightness and follows the same.

Application Actions and Slices

All of us always have been a fan of shortcuts and this is what, app actions and slices are employed to do in Android economy. With these features, an Android user can go to any specific section of the app. This functionality is also powered by the machine learning technique we discussed earlier, where it analyzes the activity pattern of the user and perform accordingly. It is much more like a predictive analysis.

Smart Notifications

Android has been taking care of the in-app notification feature too well and this has been misused by the Android developers as well. To take these notification features to the next level, the algorithm employed here will analyze the pattern of user engagement and notifies accordingly. In case you are not interested in the notification, the system will automatically close the notification bar. The Manage feature will enable Android users to prefer the kind of notification they wish to receive.


In this year’s annual conference, Google is focusing on a world of Digital Well being. We can surely say this by analyzing how Google has shifted their focus on machine learning algorithm to monitor the usage pattern of the user and work accordingly.

We are yet to see the effect of these changes on the mobile app development sector, however, we are certain that Google’s Android development team has laid a solid base for developing mobile apps easier for Android app developers. In any case, mobile application development companies must quickly adapt to these new updates as we live in a world of evolving technology or you will be left out in the race.

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Guest Author: Roshik is the co-founder of Mindster, one of the leading app development company in India. His visionary initiative and flamboyant management style have yield fruitful results for the company. He believes in sharing his strong knowledge base with an inclined focus on entrepreneurship and business.

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