We’re now around halfway through the Android Q beta phase and with beta 3 there are a few notable additions to unpack. So let’s get straight up to the major changes.
The new native dark theme
In the last beta update, you have to enable it via ADB or alternatively leave your device in the battery saver mode. Now it’s right there as a quick setting tile that you can enable and disable as you see fit. The dark theme also now encompasses a few system apps like Google Photos with more system apps now properly supported.
They are getting a huge overhaul in Android Q beta 3 with the addition of a new full gestural navigation. There’s also the ability to return to the three icon nav bar of older Android version. Google has lifted the gesture navigation method right out of the iOS PlayBook and it works really well and neatly in practice. Once you’ve activated gestural navigation, swiping up and holding heads you into your recent apps. Swiping up heads into your app drawer and swiping left or right across the navigation line will switch you between currently opened applications. To go back you do swipe in from the edges of your display and this does cause some problems with sliding. You can also return to the partial two button nav bar which can be reactivated in the settings.
Wi-Fi network sharing via QR code
It was brought in via previous Q betas but now that too has had a bit of a tweak. You can still share your Wi-Fi network via QR code but you’re now also able to see the associated network password provided you’ve already connected to said network. It’s a really great way to now share your network without fumbling around trying to find a root password.
This has been added natively to all applications. There is now no need for the app to support it. It just works automatically. It also has added enhanced features like being able to work out an address and then giving you the option to hop straight into Google Maps for quick directions. one of the best things is that all contextual replies will now work without any developer input opening up better responses absolutely everywhere in Android.
Enhanced notification control
This gives you much more detail when dismissing or muting notifications. When you long press notification in the notification center it will tell you exactly what each option will achieve, in a colorful and more detailed pane.
These are our top new features added in the new Beta 3 of Android Q