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Thursday, 26 June 2014

Google to release Android L Preview on Thursday - so developers can place their hand to innovate new.

Google plans an Android L Preview release at its Google I/O show.
Google plans to release an early version of its upcoming Android operating system, Android L Preview, on Thursday.
The software will be available for those with Google Nexus 5 smartphones and Nexus 7 tablets, Android user-interface engineer Chet Haase told programmers Wednesday during a session on the new operating system at the Google I/O conference in San Francisco. It'll be available at the Android developer site, he said.
"That comes out tomorrow," Haase said. "Please get started developing today."
The Android operating system got its start on smartphones and spread to tablets. Now Google wants to see it in cars, smartwatches, TV set-top boxes, and electronic eyewear. To help the OS span all those use cases, Google announced a new "material design" interface for Android.
Google has succeeded in many ways with Android. It's the top smartphone OS, and Google expects it to displace Apple's iPad to lead in tablets, too. The company also is trying to bring it to good $100 phones for developing markets. But the mobile market is about as competitive as they come, and Google isn't satisfied. The upcoming L version of Android embodies the company's ambitions to make the software look better, work better, attract more developers, and attract more users.
Google's preview approach with the L version is a marked contrast with its past approach, where it wouldn't release new versions of Android until it was done. Beta tests and preview versions are a good way to please enthusiasts. But more important, they let programmers adjust to changes faster so their apps are ready for the new look and features as soon as possible. That means the overall Android ecosystem could move faster.
So what's in the L Preview? Haase and another Android team programmer, Dan Sandler, detailed many of the changes. Here's a look:

Overhauled notifications

Google and Apple have gradually realized the lock screen shouldn't be wasted on mobile phones, and the L release vastly expands its utility -- within privacy constraints set by app developers and users who might not want to show personal data that's not protected by an unlocking authentication process.

Android L Preview introduces a new look for notifications.
"In L, you hear your phone buzz, you take it out out, turn it on, and that's it," Sandler said. "It's completely glanceable."
Notifications take the form of cards, as on the current KitKat, but use a black-on-white theme instead of the KitKat's dark look. The notifications can combine more graphical elements so users can more quickly understand things like the combination of who contacted them and what means they used. And the notifications use the depth information of the material design, with features like shadows cast on what's underlying on the screen.
Android L Preview also attempts to sort cards more intelligently, based in part on cues app developers can supply. Google introduced a new template to make it easier to build media-controller cards, the sort of thing that lets users fast-forward and pause video and audio.
The new notification system also is used in Android Wear for smartwatches.

Google details changes coming with notifications in Android L.

Animations and depth

The material design was inspired by the idea of a screen that had tactile features -- the kind of changing texture real-world objects have, as opposed to today's flat glassy screens. With the material design theme, developers can specify the "elevation" of an item -- how high it appears to be on the screen.
Also central to this more physically intuitive approach is animation. Buttons can ripple as they're pressed. Checkboxes can show a little splash of activity as they're tapped. And developers can specify a wide range of detailed animation behavior to control how elements bounce around, slide, expand, contract, appear, and disappear.

Better camera controls

Android L Preview lets programmers gather raw image-sensor data, which could potentially open the door to better image quality for photo enthusiasts. It also lets people capture uncompressed video data at 30 frames per second, hardware permitting, and control shutter speed, frame duration, and ISO sensitivity frame by frame.

New task switching

Android L adds finer controls to task switching. Instead of just letting people switch among apps, it'll show parts of apps -- individual documents or Web pages, for example -- so people can zero in on what they want sooner.
Cycling among those pages will use the depth and shadows of the material-design interface, too.

Google builds privacy controls into its lock-screen notifications.

Faster apps

The ART runtime -- software that actually runs the Android apps -- replaces Android's earlier Dalvik virtual machine. It means that, with no changes to software, apps will run twice as fast on Android L Preview.

New tools for Web-based apps

For those building apps using browser technologies, an approach that can ease development of apps that span multiple operating systems, Google is moving its WebView engine to the technology used in Chrome 36.
That means developers of third-party apps will get access to hardware-accelerated WebGL graphics, the WebAudio interface for better sound handling, and the WebRTC technology for real-time audio and video chats.

Better power efficiency

A tool called Project Volta will let programmers dig into application power usage with Android's debugging tools. And the Battery Historian will show how usage changes over time.
Power usage is a critical constraint on mobile devices. The Android L Preview also will debut a new power-saving mode for people who expect to be away from a charger for a long time -- something that handset designers already offer on their own with some Android phones.

Google hopes Android L will sort notifications better.

Smarter network handling

Android L will be able to detect some network problems before they get out of hand so apps can adjust accordingly.
"It allows a graceful handoff from one link to another -- if you're about to lose Wi-Fi when it's losing its range, you can rebuild [a video] stream on cellular [networks] with no interruption to the user," Sandler said.

Better Bluetooth

Android 4.3 introduced support for Bluetooth LE, a battery-preserving version of the short-range networking standard. That let phones connect to Bluetooth devices like heart-rate monitors to gather data.
Android L Preview goes another step with Bluetooth peripheral mode, which lets an Android device send Bluetooth to another device controlling the show.
source Cnet.com

What's new in Android L - a small L developer preview - on Google I/O 2014

A small preview of newly Implemented features for this latest version of Android L

Android L

Today at Google I/O 2014, Senior Vice President of Android Sundar Pichai gave us the first taste of Android L, the next generation of Google's mobile operating system. The release is Google's first developer-only preview, and while it's not the final version of the next flavor of Android, it gives us a great look at what's next.

Google names its new Android releases after desserts and sweets, and we've already known that a treat starting with the letter L was next. It seems that Google hasn't yet landed on an official name, leaving us to still speculate if version 4.5 (or perhaps 5.0) will be named Lollipop, Lemon Bar, or something else when it undoubtedly officially debuts later this year.
Until then, there's plenty to see in Android L, so without further ado, let's take a look.

Material is the new design theme and philosophy for Android. It has a minimal, more transparent design that cleans up the user interface in the operating system and Google apps. Text has more space between it, and there's a flat design through the operating system.
Material also adds updated animations, including animated check boxes and colored ripple effects when you touch the screen.

Depth with shadows

Though L has a relatively flat design, there's still areas where Google and developers can add depth. In the next version of Android, when designing a new app, developers can add shadows and natural light effects to create depth in the app.

More and brighter colors

Color has long played an important role in Android, and that is even more true in L. Google is using brighter, richer colors throughout the OS, in apps and menus.

Enhanced notifications
Notifications take on the Google Now card design aesthetic with colorful accents and white backgrounds. Android L prioritizes notifications based on what it thinks is important to you.

Heads Up

For the most important notifications, such as phone calls or battery warnings, there are new Heads Up pop-up notifications that show up over your apps at the top of the screen. They won't interrupt what you're doing, and you can interact with them to, say, take that incoming phone call. To get rid of them, just swipe them away, or swipe them up into the notification shade to save them for later.

Lockscreen notifications

Notifications also show up on your lockscreen in order to put them front and center. In order to protect your privacy, app developers can program notifications to show "public" information or "private" information, which does a great job of hiding message and email content, and more.
A public notification will show everything, while a private notification will show a message that tells you to unlock your phone to read more. Notifications for general information, such as the weather or your battery level will show up as public by default.

Multitasking changes

The old multitasking menu is getting a face lift in Android L. A new menu called "Recents" shows apps that are running in the background as a stack of cards, instead of the previous list view. You can scroll through that stack to switch between apps quickly.

Personal unlocking

Unlocking your phone gets smarter in Android L. You can still use a PIN, password, or pattern lock when you're out and about, but you can now easily unlock your device without entering your PIN or password when it's close to your personal Bluetooth device, such as a smartwatch. That means if you have the Moto 360or LG G Watch on your wrist, and pick up your Android phone, the phone knows that the watch belongs to you and automatically unlocks itself. You just need to swipe on the screen to unlock the screen.
You can also set your phone to unlock when you're in a specific location, such as your house or office. Lastly, it can unlock using your unique voice print -- meaning you can talk to your phone and recognizes your voice to unlock it.

Project Volta

Google is making more improvements to how Android and apps drain your battery. Specifically, developers get more tools to control how their apps affect the battery, including scheduling jobs, such as fetching new data, only when your phone is charging.
There's also a new Battery Saver mode for users that clocks down the CPU and turns off background data. You can turn it on manually or program it to turn on automatically when your battery drops too low.
source Cnet.com

Monday, 16 June 2014

Micromax Launched - WIN [ W092 & W121 ] two windows OS Gadgets

Micromax has launched its first set of Windows Phone-based smartphones - Canvas Win W092 and Canvas Win W121 - in India. Both are budget phones, with the former priced at Rs 6,500, while the latter will come for Rs 9,500. The Canvas Win W092 is believed to be the cheapset Windows Phone smartphone in India.
Both smartphones run Windows Phone 8.1 OS and use the Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 1.2 GHz quad-core processor. The Micromax Canvas Win W092 and Wi122 are dual-SIM phones and have 1 GB of RAM.
The Micromax Canvas Win W092 has a 4-inch screen and 1500mAh battery; it carries a price tag of Rs 6,500. The Canvas Win W121, on the other hand, features a 5-inch display, an 8 megapixel rear camera, and a 2 megapixel front camera. Priced at Rs 9,500, the Win W121 has 8GB of internal memory, which is expandable up to 32GB.
The Micromax Canvas Win 121 is also powered by the same Snapdragon 200 chip, but relies on a bigger 5" IPS display of 720p resolution and has an 8MP rear camera, a 2MP front snapper, and 8GB expandable storage. It will also launch in July and will set you back Rs 9.500 (€115).
Micromax is planning to release even more Windows Phone smartphones. In fact, another one is supposedly already in the works and we'll see it official later this year.

Having launched its Windows Phone smartphones today, Micromax has become the first Indian brand to offer Windows phones.
Microsoft announced its partnership with India's homegrown handset maker Micromax at Microsoft's BUILD conference in San Francisco in April. This move is expected to intensify competition in the smartphone and tablets space.
The software giant has already announced that it will offer its Windows OS free to smartphone and tablet makers, a move that will help the firm compete with Google's Android and Apple's iOS in the fiercely competitive smart devices market. After Micromax, we can now expect more Windows Phone devices from other Indian brands in future