7 Amazing Android 15 features announced at Google I/O 2024

7 Amazing Android 15 features announced at Google IO 2024

Google announced a slew of features for their latest Android version 15, internally called “Vanilla Ice Cream” at their annual Google I/O conference. Although slated for release towards the end of this year, Google gave an early taste of what developers and users can expect from their latest offering.

 

While AI was the single major focus during Google I/O, with Google themselves highlighting that the word “AI” was mentioned over 120 times during the conference, they did find some time to give us a sneak-peek into what Android 15 has in store for us.

Android 15

(Image source: Google)

Google’s areas of focus with this update will help users improve their productivity, offer better accessibility, and increase device battery life. Google also said Android 15 would come with features that will protect user privacy like never before. We look at some of the most prominent updates to Google’s mobile OS.

 

1. Private Space – For All the Apps You Want to Hide Away

7 Amazing Android 15 features announced at Google IO 2024 - img02

(Image source: Google)

Probably the most significant update in Android from an end user perspective is what Google calls “Private Space” — a dedicated space on your device where specific apps can be stored. What’s more, Android 15 also allows you to lock them in this private space for added security!

Although many existing Android phones offer similar features through their respective operating system’s built over the Android OS, this is the first time it’s available on stock Android. With this feature, your private space will work as a separate partition, and once you lock your private space, it automatically locks all the apps in it.

These apps are truly “private” as they don’t appear when you search for them on your device, app drawer or even in settings. Another great feature Android gives you is that these apps don’t use any resources when they’re locked as they are deactivated.

If the apps you’ve put away in the private space contain media files like photos and videos, these will also be separated from the main space to avoid being mixed with the regular files.

 

2. Battery Health

Android 15 is also touted to give users insights into their battery health. With this feature, users can see what percentage of charge the device battery currently holds compared to when it was a brand new device. Apple, through its iOS and MacOS already provides this feature, but this is the first time it’s available on Android.

The feature can be specifically useful when you’re trying to diagnose whether a possible battery drain is caused by a misbehaving app or bug or whether it’s just your battery wearing out.

 

3. Deep Integration of On-Device AI

Android 15 takes a big leap forward with on-device AI processing. This means your phone can analyze information directly, without relying on a constant internet connection. This translates to real-world benefits such as scam protection during calls.

Imagine receiving a call and your phone instantly analyzes the caller’s voice patterns and background noise, identifying potential scammers before you even pick up! While this feature has already divided opinions with some critics expressing their concerns at the idea that their private calls can be accessed by AI, Google has tried to allay these fears by saying that the data from the phone will remain on the phone.

 

4. Enhanced Theft Protection

7 Amazing Android 15 features announced at Google IO 2024 - img03

(Image source: Google)

 

With Android 15, Google has gone the extra mile to protect you from device theft by including multiple features.

Their “theft detection lock” feature, for example, uses AI to understand whether a phone has been snatched away quickly (by detecting abrupt motions) and if so, it will activate the screen lock automatically. Android 15 also makes it easier to lock your phone remotely.

While Android users can access many of these safety features if they’re using any version of the OS from Android 10 or above, there’s one feature that’s exclusive for Android 15 users.

This is the enhanced theft protection for your Android device, which will be enabled through the factory reset settings. If someone tries to reset your phone after stealing it, one of the first things they try to do is reset your phone.

With enhanced theft protection, they can’t do it without access to your Google account credentials, which means only you will be able to do it.

Android 15’s theft protection also extends to your private space. If someone gets illegal access to your phone, they won’t be able to access the apps in your private space easily. This is because Google asks you to enter a different PIN for your private space than the one you use when you set up the phone.

 

5. Multitasking

Android 15 comes with improved multitasking capabilities not just on mobile phones, but also on larger screens like tablets and large-screen displays. You can pin the taskbar on the screen or set up split-screen combinations of different apps — like Gmail & Calendar. You can even pin these app combos to the taskbar.

 

6. Health Connect

Android 15’s Health Connect offers support to track additional data such as skin temperature, which can get the information from other wearable devices. It also supports training plans geared towards competitive events that may involve achieving specific goals like number of calories burned, distance covered, and the duration of training.

Health Connect can also help you track performance goals like the number of repetitions, your rate of exertion, your speed and cadence (the number of steps you take per minute that is a measure of how quick and efficient your stride is).

 

7. Other Helpful Features

1. Predictive Back Gesture

Another handy feature is the predictive back gesture that gives you a quick preview of what you’ll be scrolling back to when you press the back button on any app — typically done by swiping across the phone screen from left to right. This means that you’ll be able to see the browser you just left previously or the homescreen when you carry out the back gesture.

2. Partial Screen Recording

This new Android feature allows you to record only a part of your screen. This is useful for activities like troubleshooting or for recording video guides. Google has even built its in-house screen recorder tool that offers this feature.

3. Protection For Your One-Time Passwords (OTPs)

Some of your accounts may require you to authenticate them using an OTP sent to you over an SMS. Android 15 won’t allow notifications with these OTPs to show up on your screen, reducing the risk of them being seen by others around you and compromising your security.

4. Custom Vibrations

You can set your own custom vibrations to know which apps you’re getting notifications from without looking at your screen. For example, setting up a single buzz for emails and two for Whatsapp messages.

In addition to these major updates, Android 15 also comes with several small tweaks that although won’t make the headlines, will surely make your life easier. These include increased efficiency in video processing, better improved management of background apps that will increase your phone’s battery life, better protection to prevent apps getting access to sensitive data.

 

It’s possible that Google may add additional functionalities by the time Android 15 becomes ready for a public release.

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