Android N Developer Preview 4 Is Now Available, Comes With An Awesome Easter Egg

We’re just around the corner from the official release of Android N, however Google isn’t quite done with that developer preview. Today the company has debuted another new developer preview for the upcoming OS and within it we’ve got a handful of minor changes, mainly under the hood. You can find Google’s official changelog below:

Android N Developer Preview 4 Changelog

Android N final APIs



Developer Preview 4 includes the final APIs for the upcoming Android N platform. The new API level is 24.

Play publishing

You can now publish apps that use API level 24 to Google Play, in alpha, beta, and production release channels.

Android Studio and tools updates

Along with Developer Preview 4 we’re providing the final API 24 SDK to be used with Android Studio 2.1.2 and higher. In addition, we’re releasing updated Developer Preview 4 system images for the emulator to help test your apps.

As new updates roll out for Android Studio, you should see minor improvements in the new project wizards and AVD manager as we add enhanced support for API 24. These are primarily cosmetic changes and should not stop you from getting your app ready for an update in the Play store.

Feature and API changes

  • In previous versions of Android, an app activates with all of its locale resources loaded before locale negotiation begins. Starting in Android N DP4, the system negotiates resource locales individually for each resource object before the app activates.
  • As announced at Developer Preview 3, we’ve deferred the Launcher Shortcuts feature to a later release of Android. In Developer Preview 4, we’ve removed the Launcher Shortcuts APIs.
  • We’ve changed the BLE Scanning behavior starting in DP4. We’ll prevent applications from starting and stopping scans more than 5 times in 30 seconds. For long running scans, we’ll convert them into opportunistic scans.
  • The Multi-Windowandroid:minimalHeight and android:minimalWidthattributes have been renamed to android:minHeight and android:minWidth.

Known Issues

Stability

  • Users may encounter system instability (such as kernel panics and crashes).

Launcher

  • The default launcher’s All Apps tray may become unresponsive after cycling the screen off and on. Returning to the homescreen and relaunching theAll Apps tray may resolve this issue.

Setup Wizard

  • Crash on selecting “Not now” in “Set up email” screen.

Media

  • Media playback may be unreliable on Nexus 9 and Nexus Player, including issues playing HD video.
  • Occasional freeze when running the YouTube app with other apps in multi-window mode on Pixel C devices. In some cases hard reboot is required.
  • Apps may have issues playing some Widevine DRM-protected content on Nexus 9 devices.
  • Issues handling VP8 video on Nexus 9 devices.

External storage

  • Apps may become unstable when the user moves them from internal storage to adoptable external storage (this can include SD card or devices attached over USB).

Screen zoom and multiple APKs in Google Play

  • On devices running Android N, Google Play services 9.0.83 incorrectly reports the current screen density rather than the stable screen density. When screen zoom is enabled on these devices, this can cause Google Play to select a version of a multi-APK app that’s designed for smaller screens. This issue is fixed in the next version of Google Play services and will be included in a later Developer Preview release.

Vulkan support and multiple APKs in Google Play

  • On devices running Android N, Google Play services 9.0.83 currently reports Vulkan support but not Vulkan version. This can cause Google Play to select a version of a multi-APK app that’s designed for lower Vulkan support on devices with higher version support. Currently, the Google Play Store does not accept uploads of apps which use Vulkan version targeting. This support will be added to the Google Play Store in the future and fixed in the next version of Google Play services (to be included in a later Developer Preview release). Any N devices using the version of Google Play services 9.0.83 will continue to receive versions of apps targeting basic Vulkan support.

Accessibility

  • Switch access doesn’t allow user to navigate web pages in Chrome.
  • Accessibility issues for talkback users with notification dismissal, and wifi selection screen.

Android for Work

  • Currently, CA certificates provisioned through DevicePolicyManager are not available to profiles other than the primary user/profile due to a preload issue. For example, this could prevent a user from connecting to a trusted server when in a Work profile. This issue will be resolved in the next Developer Preview.

Fixes for issues reported by developers

  • A number of issues reported by developers have been fixed, including:
  • The active network state (NetworkInfo.getState() andNetworkInfo.getDetailedState()) might return incorrect values during some restricted background scenarios
  • Data Saver restricts the foreground MMS mobile network request (bug 208478)
  • Quick settings tiles and notifications sometimes unresponsive
  • Unable to dismiss Clock notifications
  • Duplication of bluetooth icon and other status icons
  • Additional bluetooth connectivity fixes

Another small change worth noting is that the time listed in Demo Mode has been switched to 7:00pm, helping to confirm that the new OS will indeed be Android 7.0. Another hilarious change is in the Android N easter egg. While we still don’t have the final one, Google is following up on a joke from Google I/O 2016 where Android VP David Burke jokingly suggested the name would be “Namey McNameface”.

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Android N Developer Preview 4 is now available in OTA and system image formats for the Nexus 5X, Nexus 6, Nexus 6P, Nexus 9, Nexus 9 LTE, Nexus Player, General Mobile 4G (Android One), and the Pixel C. You can download it now from Google or sign up for the Android Beta Program to get the OTA sent to your device. 

Source: Android