Google just announced the next version of Android (4.1) known as Jelly Bean. Jelly Bean builds upon Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and includes lots of new features, usability and UI enhancements and performance improvements. If you missed the Google I/O keynote, here is everything that you need to know about Android 4.1 Jelly Bean -:
Project Butter and Updated Launcher
One important part of Jelly Bean is Project Butter. Project Butter includes Vsync, Triple buffering, improved touch experience, lower CPU usage, and improved usage of system resources. Basically, Project Butter is aimed at improving the overall speed of Android OS and Apps as a whole to provide a ‘butter’ smooth UI experience. According to Google, Jelly Bean is the fastest version of Android yet!
Jelly Bean also includes a new and updated launcher that automatically resizes the widgets if its size is too big, or re-aligns the icons to fit the widget on a specific homescreen.
New Prediction System and 18 New Input Languages
Google also updated the keyboard predictive system in Jelly Bean to make it more Swiftkey like. The keyboard now tries to predict the next word the user is going to type, which is similar to Swiftkey. The Voice to text feature also got a major update, and now works without a working data connection. Apart from this, Google has also added support for 18 new Input languages including Hindi and Persian language. There is also an Arabic font for Arabian users.
Updated Camera App
The Camera app in Ice Cream Sandwich got a pretty major upgrade in Ice Cream Sandwich, but Google has once again updated it in Jelly Bean. The new camera app allows users to navigate through their photos right from the camera app extremely quickly. Users can use the pinch-to-zoom option to zoom out and see all the pictures they have clicked at once in a card-stacked view. They can delete any picture by just swiping it out. An Undo option is also present for that oops moment.
Android Beam With File Sharing Support
In Ice Cream Sandwich, Google introduced Android Beam that allowed users to share data between other NFC enabled devices by just tapping them together. However, this only work for a limited set of data like an app’s play store link, a YouTube video etc. With Jelly Bean, Google went ahead and updated Android Beam to allow support for sharing for videos and pictures via Android Beam using Wi-Fi Direct. S-Beam on the Galaxy S III provides the same feature as this but the former works only with another Galaxy S III, while the latter will work on any Android device with a NFC chip running Jelly Bean.
Updated Notification System
The Notification bar got a slight UI update in Ice Cream Sandwich, but with Jelly Bean Google has once again proved that Android’s notification system is better than iOS6 and Windows Phone. Now, users can directly call, like, check-in or message a friend right from the notification bar. For example, users can also view their new streams in Pulse right from the notification bar by just using a simple pinch-to-zoom gesture.
New Google Search Experience
Google has updated the Google Search bar and the whole Google search experience to take it to the next level. Not only is it faster, smarter and easier to use, it also provides users with direct answers to their question using Google’s Knowledge Graph. The Voice Search feature has also been updated, and is more accurate than before. It will also reply back to users with the answers ala Siri.
Google Now uses a user’s search history, calendar entries and other personal information to provide them with relevant information in real-time. It will automatically provide users with bus schedules when they are near a bus station, or the quickest route to their home when they leave their home, or by provide them with the scores of your favorite team or by providing relevant information when they travel abroad.
App Encryption and Smart APK Updates
With Jelly Bean, Google has introduced App encryption. The app will be encrypted before the download begins and once it is downloaded on the device as well, using a device specific key making them more secure.
Smart APK Updates will allow users to download users to download only the ‘updated’ parts of the APK and not the whole APK. This will help in not only reducing the size of the APK updates, but will also reduce the bandwith usage for quite a lot of users. The Smart APK updates feature will be available for Android 2.3+ Gingerbread devices.
With Jelly Bean, Google has replaced the stock Ice Cream Sandwich browser with Chrome in Nexus 7. This also marks the death of Flash for Android. For other devices, the stock Android browser will still be shipped as the default one.
The Android 4.1 Jelly Bean update will be available for Galaxy Nexus, Nexus S and the Motorola XOOM sometime in mid-July as an OTA update.
Image Source – TheVerge