This week's Google I/O 2014 conference largely focused on wearable tech and product announcements, but amidst the wow-factor reveals were some important operating system updates that will change the way Android developers design mobile apps.
Google unveiled the next version of its Android operating system, Android L. Here are the highlights of the upcoming Android L’s features:
1. Over 5,000 new developer APIs and a unified design across all Android interfaces
2. A redesigned keyboard for smartphones
3. A notification screen that will merge with the lock screen
4. A smoother running operating system
5. Better art performance, 64-bit compatibility and a new Android Extension Pack to support 3D graphics
6. A new cross platform UI called Material Design, offering app developers more precise tools to make customized typography, grid and color changes
7. The ability for designers to add smooth animations at 60 fps using Polymer, a prototyping tool
8. The ability for developers to identify battery discharge patterns to improve overall power consumption
9. Heightened security, such as new patches for Google Play services and factory reset protection
10. Additionally, Google has introduced guidelines to help designers build a consistent look and feel across all Android interfaces.
Between Android L and Apple's iOS 8, this fall will be busy for app developers and retailers alike!