We’re quickly approaching launch day for Android Q, Google’s 29th launch of Android. At some point within the near future, we should see a statue-unveiling, official confirmation that this is “Android 10,” and the highly awaited “Q” snack name [Editor’s suggestion]. First, although, we have to see the sixth-and-final beta launch out the door, which is going on today. Android Q Beta 6 is rolling out to Pixel phones now and collaborating third-party units within the coming weeks.
Final APIs for builders had been locked down in Beta 4, so Beta 5 and 6 are largely about squishing bugs and polishing up the ultimate interface. Fully gestural navigation is a serious feature of Android Q, and with the Beta 5 launch got here the announcement that gesture navigation wouldn’t work with third-party home apps at launch, presumably due to an absence of time to work out the pile of bugs which were reported.
Even with third-party home screen compatibility off the desk, it looks like Google will be engaged on gesture navigation down to the wire. Beta 5 came with a brand new gesture for the Google Assistant and new guidelines for developers. In Beta 6, Google says it has “made additional refinements to Gesture Navigation in Beta 6 based on person feedback” and now has a sensitivity setting for the back gesture. The back gesture involves swiping in from the edge of the display, which may interfere with apps that require horizontal scrolling. Newly updated apps are supposed to design around the new back gesture; the sensitivity setting should help discover a balance for older apps with conflicting swipe areas.