As we all await the arrival of the latest Nexus device (or devices if all holds true), we are also eagerly awaiting what Google has up its sleeves in the latest Android OS. Well it looks like the gang at Android and Me may have the inside scoop on not only the latest OS which is expected to be software version 4.2, but details on the direction of its Nexus line of devices. According to an anonymous source, Google is trying to promote its Nexus line among all major manufacturers. The various manufacturers will work directly with Google in regards to the hardware and driver details, though Google will be responsible for the hardware updates directly. Moreover, although these special Google devices are part of the Nexus line, they don’t necessarily need to be called Nexus as part of its name– sort of like of what Google did with the Motorola Xoom WiFi tablet. The thought is that by manufacturers joining the Nexus program, it would allow for the special variations of the devices to have even more access to specially-optimized Google content.
Of course since there will be added content, it’s only natural to have an idea of what exactly the Nexus devices will feature in regards to the newest Android OS, Android 4.2. The biggest features in the new OS are rumored to be identified as the new Customization Center, Project Roadrunner, an updated Google Now and revamped Play Store. The new Customization Center will be useful for all Android users as it essentially allows users to update the base Android OS, without having to wait for OEM manufacturers to update their skins. Here’s how it works: it is basically a way for you to do basic customizations through a range of options through the Play Store. When a new update is available, new items like filters and icons would be available via the Play Store. So when Google upgrades Android and a manufacturer doesn’t provide a compatible version of their custom UI initially, the device reverts simply to the stock UI or wait for the upgrade until the manufacturer catches up.
The others seem to be incredibly beneficial as well. Project Roadrunner specifically aims to soup up and optimize battery life on devices, having the same impact as Project Butter did when it came to responsiveness on Jelly Bean-enabled devices. Meanwhile, the updated Google Play Store will likely feature personalized search, optional promotional campaigns with Notification Center integration, more billing options, and easier in-app micro-transactions. And finally, Google Now will be updated to include even more expanded functionality like the ability to ask “Where can I activate bluetooth?” or “How can I tone down the brightness?”, for basic OS questions.
Keep in mind this should all be taken with a grain of salt, but it’s looking more and more like Google is ready to take the next major step in the evolution of Android as a whole. All we need now is for the announcement to hurry up and get here already.
source: Android and Me