Sur-Pies! Google shocks world with sudden Android 9 Pixel push

Todd Singleton
August 7, 2018

Google has released the next version of Android, and it's called Pie.

This includes swiping up or down to see previews of recently-used apps, and then being able to access them instantly. Here's a look at the new features touted for Android 9 Pie.

While the Android 9 Oreo operating system is available right now for Pixel owners, some specific features won't actually "ship" until the fall.

It seems like the Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL will be announced on October 4, at least according to a new piece of info that just surfaced. Google's Android P was available in beta for the last four odd months, but the Android 9 Pie is the version ready for masses and it will be rolling out to compatible phones from tonight. On Monday, Google announced 140,000 users participated in the program. Instead of a trio of buttons along the bottom of the screen, each one representing a different navigation method, Android 9 Pie uses gestures.

Android Central spoke with EK Chung, the UX manager for Android handheld and Pixel at Google. A swipe to the left or right on the new single button will quickly switch between apps.

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"We've built Android 9 to learn from you - and work better for you - the more you use it".

Google also confirmed earlier that Android One and Project Treble will allow more devices to get upgraded to Android Pie.

The program isn't now ready for wide release, but users can sign up to take part in a Digital Wellbeing beta to help Google test the feature before it officially launches this fall by signing up here. The dashboard is part of Google's new Digital Wellbeing initiative, which aims to help users curb smartphone addiction. The phone will also attempt to predict what apps you like to run by displaying short-cuts to them during certain pairs of the day.

Although we aren't holding out breaths, we can only hope that hardware OEMs are quicker about upgrading current devices to Android 9 Pie this time around. If you find yourself constantly switching between apps on your Pixel, we've got good news for you: Smart Text Selection (which recognizes the meaning of the text you're selecting and suggests relevant actions) now works on the Overview of your recent apps, making it easier to perform the action you want.

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