6 New Features Coming to Android this Holiday Season

When it comes to the mobile market, Android is undoubtedly the king. According to Statista, it has maintained the top position as the leading mobile operating system in the world, with a 73% market share in 2021. As a result, even the smallest changes in the OS have the potential to affect millions of Android users worldwide. 

Speaking of changes, Google recently announced a list of new Android features that are rolling out to make your smartphones more powerful and useful than ever. The big update is a huge buzz for Android users, who were eagerly waiting for these features. Here are the top features coming to Android this holiday season. 

1. Google Photos Memories 

Whether it’s a holiday or birthday, Android users can now curate photos and videos of these big moments. Google Photos is going to have a new Memories feature, which will remind you of the memories you’ve spent with your family and friends. The feature is rolled out and will help you edit Memories that will appear automatically in your Photos grid. Just click on the grid and start exploring, renaming, personalizing, or removing your memories.

2. Family Bell 

The Family Bell feature is what you will find most useful if you wish to spend a while with your loved ones. The feature will help you ship alerts and notifications to not solely your phone, but also to your loved one’s phones. This means you can now set alerts for the whole family’s schedule. 

Be it setting an alert for morning breakfast or watering plants, the new Family Bell feature will keep you and your family on top of that busy holiday to-do list. To set one up, all you have to do is open the Google Home app, then Assistant settings, and finally the Family Bell. 

3. Digital Car Key 

Google is also unveiling the Digital Car Key feature, allowing Android users to lock, unlock, and even start a compatible car using their smartphones. Although it is initially rolling out in a few countries (on the Pixel 6, Pixel 6 Pro, and Samsung Galaxy S21 for compatible BMW cars), this feature will be soon updated for other countries, devices, and cars. 

Notably, Apple launched the same digital automotive key feature for iPhone users. Google is updating Android Auto to help users set their in-car programs and link them with their Android phone. You can tap your smartphone on the door handle, start the car’s engine by placing it on the NFC reader, and get connected with your vehicle in a few seconds. In addition to that, a new auto-launch setting will be provided to make further updates like sending messages using voice search without taking your eyes off the road.

4. Emoji Kitchen 

Gboard is also getting a replacement with a new characteristic referred to as Emoji Kitchen. Without typing any textual content, you can now mix your favorite emoji into a pleasant sticker and share it with your family or friends. Google announced that the company is rolling out this feature to Gboard Beta customers. However, all Gboard users are going to get it within the coming weeks.

5. Google Widgets 

In addition to the above-mentioned features, Google apps (Google Play Books and YouTube Music) have some new widgets. Google Play Books’ new widget helps you access your full library of books and track your audio book progress directly from your Home Screen. Whereas, the new YouTube Music widget gives you access to playback controls and recently played tracks from your Home screen. The new Google Photos People & Pets helps you put a frame with your family photos on your Home Screen. 

6. Permissions Auto-Reset 

The last major feature that Google is introducing for Android phones is Permissions Auto-Reset. This feature will allow your phone to automatically turn off runtime permissions for those downloaded mobile apps that you haven’t used in a while. It will also allow apps to access restricted data and actions, including accessing location, camera, and contact information. 

Of course, you can turn it on again anytime you want, either by opening the app or the settings menu. Google said the new feature will help you protect your privacy by automatically resetting a downloaded app’s access.

That’s it – a list of Android features Google have for you this holiday season. Hope you have a clear idea of each of them now. If you have any questions regarding the update, feel free to contact us.