A lot of things happened at the Google I/O event in Moscone West in San Francisco. As of count, I see four big announcements from the event: that awesome demo of Project Glass, Google Nexus Q, Google Nexus 7 and now Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.
I will refuse, to call it JB though as Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich was called Android ICS. I don’t want it associated with that Canadian singer that many hate. Not that liking that superstar is bad. By all means do so if that’s your thing. I just don’t want Jelly Bean related to that person.
Anyway, here’s a list of ten things you need to know about Android Jelly Bean.
1. Android 4.1 will have offline voice typing. Finally! I’ve just about had it with voice typing always needing to connect to the Internet on my Android device. What if I just want to use voice dictation without an internet connection? Jelly Bean will have that.
2. The newest Android mobile operating system from Mountain View is reportedly smarter than its predecessor. Obviously, it needs to be. Anyway, remember predictive input which guesses which word you’re typing? Jelly Bean goes a step further by guessing the word you’re going to type next.
3. In line with that smarter software thing, Google also announced Google Now at the Google I/O event. What it does is to give you relevant information based on where you are, your habits and such. For example, it takes into consideration where you are and at what time when displaying search results. It will also learn your daily route so the next time you search for a route, you’ll be guided through a better path. It’ll also show you the status of your flights, your appointments, those kinds of stuff.
4. Another thing that’s smarter with Jelly Bean will be the way it searches for content on the web. It’s reportedly faster and better at searching. It is also said to make it easier for people to share photos and other files. Jelly Bean also supports Android Beam which makes use of NFC to share files. NFC also enables Androids on Jelly Bean to pair with NFC-equipped speakers.
5. Jelly Bean’s UI will incorporate a lot from Project Butter. The project had the goal of getting the Android UI to be buttery smooth. It promises the lowest touch latency with an intuitive and intelligent UI. Bottom line, it is promised to be more fluid and easy than the past UIs on Android. App widgets will also resize to fit another app icon or widget when the screen has no more room.
6. Google says that Jelly Bean will have full brail support. We don’t know a lot about it at the moment but Google says it will release information about it soon. If it will have good support for Brail, that would be a great thing.
7. Google revealed that Jelly Bean will make triple buffering in the graphics pipeline. This will make rendering from scrolling to animations way more fluid. Add to that that vsync timing is extended across all drawing and animation, Jelly Bean promises a better experience overall.
8. Notification on Jelly Bean has also been improved. You can now expand notifications to view more information. From the notifications menu, you can then call or message people and also interact with apps.
9. The imaging app on Jelly Bean adds two new shortcuts: swiping from the app will show recently-taken photos, selecting photos and swiping them off to the top deletes. Deleting can be undone.
10. Jelly Bean will roll out to the Galaxy Nexus, Motorola Xoom and Nexus S in mid-July. Nexus 7 will have Jelly Bean right out of the box. Other phones and tablets will follow though.