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Google Android Iphone Operating Systems Software

Google's Next Android Overhaul Will Embrace iPhone's 'Notch' (bloomberg.com) 179

Google is working on a "dramatic redesign" of its Android operating system, Bloomberg reported on Monday. The company has stuck with a single look for its mobile operating system (OS) for quite some time now, but it's now reportedly looking at Apple for inspiration. The new version of Android -- which Bloomberg says is called "Pistachio Ice Cream" internally -- will apparently be designed with the space for a cutout at the top, much like the iPhone X and its so-called "notch." From the report: The operating system refresh, Android P, will emphasize Google's Assistant, a digital helper that competes with Apple's Siri and Amazon.com's Alexa. Developers will be able to integrate Google's voice-based technology inside of their apps. The company has also weighed integrating the search bar on the Android home screen with its assistant, although neither of these changes are finalized for introduction this year, according to one of the people familiar with the situation.

Google's Next Android Overhaul Will Embrace iPhone's 'Notch'

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  • by ctilsie242 ( 4841247 ) on Monday February 12, 2018 @09:14AM (#56107681)

    Apple can do a notch because they know the dimensions on what their sensor array is going to be. With Android, this is a different story. An inexpensive phone may just have an IR sensor and a low-end camera. A more expensive phone might have more front facing stuff. Will this be a one size fits all notch, or something that is wider/narrower depending on the device? If it is one size fits all, that may hurt hardware makers. If it is variable, that would stomp on devs trying to make their apps have the right dimensions and contribute to the complaints of fragmentation.

    I wonder how Google will handle this.

    • In essence the notch space is just used for a menu location. Being that most Application have a menu bar with a lot of white space. the notch is enough to fit probably up to 4 top level menu options. with the stuff in the middle. I expect smaller notches will just have a little more white space. Apples interface may display some info on both sides of the notch, using a drag down gesture for extra options depending on which side of the notch you are doing the gesture.

      For the most part the notch is a good id

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) <mojoNO@SPAMworld3.net> on Monday February 12, 2018 @10:12AM (#56108013) Homepage Journal

      The Essential Phone has a small notch and runs Android. So clearly it was possible with a bit of work and it looks like Google is just formalizing support for it. Presumably the width of the notch will be manufacturer defined.

      BTW, the Essential Phone was released before the iPhone X. In any case, I doubt anyone is copying anyone here, it's just a question of LCD manufacturers starting to offer non-rectangular shapes. Started with aircraft and car manufacturers wanting round LCDs to replace dials, and then smartwatches.

    • by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) on Monday February 12, 2018 @10:17AM (#56108041)

      I wonder how Google will handle this.

      I really hope they handle it by throwing in the towel and relegating those ugly notches to the dustbin of history where they belong.

    • Make the notch dimensions a declared variable. Leave the value to the manufacturer.

      This is hard, right?

    • I'm an iOS developer and it's handled as follows.

      The graphics toolkit is called UIKit. All stuff on the screen (buttons, textfields, everything) descends from a class called UIView. The screen itself is a view, let's call it the main view.

      So anyway, all UIView instances have four anchors (top/bottom/left/right). You can hang these anchors to other anchors, to the edge of the main view, or to the safeAreaLayoutGuide of the main view. And that safeAreaLayoutGuide is the biggest square area of the main view. M

  • by JaredOfEuropa ( 526365 ) on Monday February 12, 2018 @09:15AM (#56107683) Journal
    So of all of Apple's ideas, they decided to copy that atrocity...
    • by mentil ( 1748130 )

      Not sure where the notch hate is coming from. Instead of taking up pixels at the top of the display that could be used for anything, notification icons are now using a tiny amount of space that is unable to fit a full-width image anyway. Thus, putting the icons there means you have MORE vertical display space free for the main image. I'm way more miffed about getting rid of the home button and having to use gestures for all of its functions, in the name of killing the bezel; a 3d touch soft button at the bo

      • by rot16 ( 4603585 )
        I want my next mobile phone to have a bezel. My old HTC One Mini 2 has two non-glass bars both at top and bottom, also the glass does not touch the sides. I have dropped it numerous times, the glass never broke. I hope there will be options with modern CPUs when it's time to upgrade.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        Depends on the size of the notch. The iPhone notch is terrible for two reasons: first, the obvious, is that it looks bad. Part of this is because Apple decided that the notch must stand out, and their user interface guide requires that the display to the left and right of the notch must be colored and cannot be black. (Except, of course, when it can. Since this is Slashdot and someone will point out that there are times when it is left black, I'll clarify that they say that it must "match the rest of the ap

    • To be fair, can you think of any recent Apple "feature" that would not have provoked this response?

      • Maybe not. I wasn't all that happy with the demise of the 3.5mm jack, but at least the new iPhone is sort of waterproof now, and I got a pair of Airpods... Now there's a product that looks, feels and works like old-school Apple stuff.
    • Didn't Andy Rubin's Essential phone have the notch first?

      Or are they just throwing "Apple" into the story for clicks?

  • Makes sense (Score:5, Insightful)

    by RavenLrD20k ( 311488 ) on Monday February 12, 2018 @09:15AM (#56107687) Journal

    Because I use devices that compete with Apple with interfaces and features that I prefer to use over anything Apple offers, that MUST mean that I want the platform I use to mimic Apple!

    God dammit!

    • Because I use devices that compete with Apple with interfaces and features that I prefer to use over anything Apple offers, that MUST mean that I want the platform I use to mimic Apple!

      God dammit!

      Yeah... nobody wants this. But if the OS is going to support many different devices and manufacturers, it probably needs to have support for weird shaped displays because otherwise the manufacturers will make up their own. I'd rather they proactively do this than wait until there are 10 different implementations like we had with fingerprint security.

    • by dbialac ( 320955 )
      Yep. Now everyone can have a phone that looks like something from "There, I Fixed It".
  • by enjar ( 249223 ) on Monday February 12, 2018 @09:15AM (#56107689) Homepage
    First they copied the stupid "headphone jack delete" idea, now this nonsense. Guess I'll just keep putting batteries in my 6P as they wear since they are evidently out of fresh ideas and have started copying bugs made into features.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Android has a long history of copying iOS designs. iOS has a long history of eventually implementing Android features.

      And the zealots of each refuse to acknowledge one of the above sentences while holding tightly to the other.

      • Finally someone has said it, thank you. The tribal mindset over smartphones is idiotic and second only to the tribal mindset of politics.
        The both copy from each other, they both have pros and cons, but far more pros.
        I happen to use both (one personal, one issued by work) and frankly, as an old fart, the whole idea of a small pocket sized slab of a computer with a killer color display that can play HD movies, take quality digital pictures, make phone calls, play music, and connect to a world wide network th

    • Re:Oh, FFS (Score:4, Insightful)

      by djlemma ( 1053860 ) on Monday February 12, 2018 @10:14AM (#56108023)
      AGREED.

      Removing useful features and giving me more features I have no interest in is NOT progress.

      Give me a phone with plenty of battery life, storage capacity, and the ability to interface with all the things I already own, and I'm happy. But, marketers gotta market, I guess.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        Xiaomi Mi A1

        Battery lasts about a day and half with moderate usage (including HD video streaming and some gaming), comes with 64gb of internal storage as well as an mSD card slot that can also be used for adoptable storage, and ships with stock Android that you can fuck with all you like, plus it still has a headphone jack. The only caveat is that the battery isn't user-replaceable (at least not with a decent toolset and a long afternoon), but even then you can get a battery bank for the cost of a spare bat

    • Except Apple weren't the ones who had the idea of the notch first (again a rip-off of other designers), it was an android phone called essential which had it first (way before anything was known about the iPhone X).. And Apple also wasn't the first with the removal of the 3.5 jack, some cheapass android phones already were shipped without it, and to me it certainly is no loss, haven't used it on any of my phones, and never will.
  • by fubarrr ( 884157 ) on Monday February 12, 2018 @09:16AM (#56107691)

    >will apparently be designed with the space for a cutout at the top, much like the iPhone X and its so-called "notch"

    NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!

  • by Merk42 ( 1906718 ) on Monday February 12, 2018 @09:16AM (#56107693)
    iPhone previously showed the current time in the middle, and thus, had to be changed for iPhone X's 'notch'. Android doesn't show anything there to begin with, which is why phones like Essential, were able to have a similar, albeit much smaller, notch.
    • "already done" is a strange way of describing a single phone making a custom workaround to the Android OS which shown no awareness of anything that may protrude onto the screen.

  • Apple hardware is very much is second place... by a VERY long margin.

    Android is a resounding success, and people buying Android devices are -- guess what? Choosing NOT to buy Apple products.

    Obviously there is going to be some back and forth of ideas, but if someone at Google thinks that Android needs to 'be more like Apple', well.. the sales very much don't warrant that. If people wanted a 'notch', they'd buy an Apple device...

  • Pistachio icecream, really? Not Praline, or Pudding, or another P word that's a dessert by itself? You could tack 'icecream' onto any letter. Also, there was already a Froyo and an Ice Cream Sandwich.

    • by tsqr ( 808554 )

      Pistachio icecream, really? Not Praline, or Pudding, or another P word that's a dessert by itself? You could tack 'icecream' onto any letter. Also, there was already a Froyo and an Ice Cream Sandwich.

      No need to get worked up. From TFA: Internally, Google is calling the latest one Pistachio Ice Cream, but the company typically uses different official names, the people ["people familiar with the situation"] also said. Anyway, "a rose by any other name would smell as sweet", right?

  • by jbmartin6 ( 1232050 ) on Monday February 12, 2018 @09:25AM (#56107735)
    This is why I never update. Yet another "upgrade" introducing pointless and gratuitous interface changes. No doubt they will "improve" my user experience by moving, removing, or renaming settings, adding new "features" I can't delete or turn off, and if they are feeling really ambitious perhaps break some of the apps I use and make the device generally slower.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Version 1.0 of any software is flawless.
    • Depends on the ROM. If a launcher is ugly, replace it with Nova Launcher. This ensures that no matter what Android device I have, be it LG, Samsung, or HTC, it has the same UI as the one I used previously, so I don't have to get used to a new way of working.

      As for bloatware, this is why a rootable/unlockable bootloader is a deal breaker of a feature. With root and a good firewall, an Android phone can be quite private, with only vetted apps allowed to phone home. Without it, a device can be a privacy di

    • Kids on your lawn again, eh?

  • by joh ( 27088 ) on Monday February 12, 2018 @09:43AM (#56107833)

    Everybody wants to stretch the display over all of the front or at least do that as far as possible. Since there are a few things (like the camera) that have to stay there too, you have to make room for them. So the only options right now are either a "notch" or a "full-width notch" (having the display not cover all of the height of the front). Since you can make good use of the display areas left and right of the notch you get more usable display area this way compared to leaving empty a strip on the top or bottom of the front just to put the camera there.

    What's so hard to understand about this?

    • Since you can make good use of the display areas left and right of the notch you get more usable display area this way compared to leaving empty a strip on the top or bottom of the front just to put the camera there.

      What's so hard to understand about this?

      It's not an issue of understanding. A lot of people (myself included) simply think a notched screen looks stupid.

    • It's a lot of added complexity for hardware and software just to gain a small extra space for showing status icons (which won't be enough space anyway).
  • Android Overhaul Will Embrace iPhone's 'Notch'

    Can you point at where on the phone-shaped doll that the Android touched you?

    Seriously, wording...

  • But Samsung already made fun of the notch in that commercial where the guy waiting in line outside the Apple store has that awesome haircut!
  • That's great as long as I can turn it off. If I can delete it completely so I get the space back, even better; knock yourselves out.

  • because of the notch?
  • How is this design based on Apple's iPhone X, even though an Android phone had it first..... The android phone Essential was the first with a notch, NOT Apple...
    But hee, you can see what kind of apple fanboys those techsites really are...

  • The LG V20 has a second screen. I like it.
    [techradar.com]http://www.techradar.com/revie... [techradar.com]
  • Wake me up when they do something useful.

  • The operating system refresh, Android P, will emphasize Google's Assistant

    Well I guess this means that I'll never buy an Android P phone then.

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