Get ready for the latest Android OS release, Android 6.0 Marshmallow. Releasing first on Nexus devices with roll-out planned on other devices and over-air updating in the coming weeks and months.
There’s a long list of improvements, you can get the full official summary here.
So this is just a summary of what we see as the highlights. In sort, its mix of interesting developments and Google playing catch up. There are a range of improvement including improvements to contextual search, battery management, biometric security & permissions and smoother set-up and OS migration.
One of the biggest pains on both Android and iOS is poor multi-tasking. iOS9 sees some leaps forward here, marshmallow also brings some multitasking. Time will tell who gets this important feature most right. In truth Marshmallow is more “contextual assistance” than multi application multitasking and its a natural extension to the contextual intelligence released in Googles search engine, but at least its a start. Now on Tap makes it easier to get contextual information on a subject. It’s also got some interesting voice based actions and cross app sharing. Android Runtime (ART) performance improvements will also help multi-tasking with reduced memory overhead.
The bane of every smart phone users life, the dreaded red battery warning. No one has yet cracked this, but Android 6.0 shuffles forward with some improvements. Their Doze function puts the device to sleep mode automatically and reduces the battery juice drain from rarely used apps. And if the device supports it, introducing USB type C support should significantly speed up recharge times. So not live changing, but progress at least.
Where the device supports biometric security Marshmallow will use the fingerprint sensor to unlock the device and allow purchases both within Google play and in stores. Their rather late response to Apple Pay. There are also a few interesting improvements in how apps ask for permission to access users information, which will be a big improvement in the user experience. Now only asking for permissions when they are actually needed within the app.
This is what we see as the main highlights from Android 6.0 Marshmallow. Full summary is available here.
We’d love to hear your views on 6.0. Particularly around whether the gap is widening around native functionality and hybrid html 5.