Good news for Android users! Google’s Android operating system is getting an important update. This time, it is to Version 6.0 named Marshmallow. As every Android update does, the Marshmallow update also comes up with some improvements to it’s previous version Android 5.1 Lollipop. The highlighting feature of the Android Marshmallow(Android M) update is the improved User Interface(UI) and fingerprint support. In the Android M update, the developers have also spent time in fixing the app security issues. Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P are the first two devices to run on Android Marshmallow. For existing Android devices, the Android M update will start rolling out in a week.
Key Features of Android Marshmallow
Google Now on Tap
The highlighting feature of Android Marshmallow is, on a single tap on the home button, it can wake up Google Now: the intelligent search assistant. In Android M, the Google now app is powered by some really powerful search algorithm. By a long press on the home button, the Google now app is triggered, and it comes up with some very useful information related to the work you are doing. For instance, you are viewing a page on Sachin Tendulkar. Pressing the home button long and asking ‘How old is he’ will popup a small window at the bottom of the screen showing the age of sachin tendulkar! It understands the ‘he’ you are referring to.
Another example is, if you are browsing through a blog on ‘New English movies this weekend’, long press on Home button will show the list of english movies based on imdb rating. Cool, isn’t it?
Android App Permissions
This is a notable security improvement in Android M. Every app should seek the permission each and every time it uses one device feature. For example, if an app requires access to your camera, then it should ask for your permission before using it. You have the right to grant permission or to deny it. Presently, Android apps asks permission only at the time of app installation. One will easily get confused as well as hesitated while seeing the long list starting from camera access,location to message history. This issue is smartly taken care in Android M. Using this feature, you can limit the resources an app will have access to. Thus, the full control is passed over to the end user.
Fingerprint Support and Android Pay
Android M extends fingerprint support to a higher level. From mere device locking and unlocking, Android Marshmallow adds support for in app purchases, shopping and payments. The payments will now be completed in a single touch for the devices with embedded fingerprint sensor. With Android Pay, the mobile payments can be done easily. You need not enter the details of your bank account or any password. Only your Fingerprint is required to authorize any kind of transaction.
Smarter Battery Management
The basic feature of every Android version upgrade. The Android M uses the Smart phone battery in a smarter way so that the battery life lasts long. The ‘Doze‘ in Android Marshmallow puts your device to a sleep state when it is at rest whereas, essential functions like alarms will work as normal. Another feature is ‘App standby‘ which limits the rarely used apps which have an impact of device’s battery life.
Smartphones getting Android M Update|Devices list
Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P are the two devices currently running Android 6 Marshmallow. As in every Android update, Nexus devices are the first to receive Android M upgrade. Nexus 5, Nexus 6, Nexus 7, Nexus 9 and Nexus Player are the devices in the scheduled list, going to receive the Marshmallow update from next week(week commencing on October 5). Whereas, the schedule of Android M update for other nexus devices are not announced.
HTC has officially confirmed the Android Marshmallow update for HTC One M8, HTC One M9 and HTC One M9+. However, the HTC users should eagerly wait until the end of 2015.
Samsung devices will start receiving the Android 6 update from early 2016. The Android M update has been confirmed for Samsung Galaxy Note 5, Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge+, Samsung Galaxy S6, Samsung Galaxy S6 Duos, Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge, Samsung Galaxy Note 4, Samsung Galaxy Note 4 Duos, Samsung Galaxy Note Edge, Samsung Galaxy ALPHA and Samsung Galaxy Tab A.