Skip to main content

Android 12 is a sign that Google actually cares about the Pixel line

Whether you love the look or hate it, Material You is Google's way to make its Pixel phones stand out.

We'll soon see a sixth year of Google building its own phones under the Pixel brand. Pixel 6 leaks and rumors look really interesting, and if even half of them turn out to be correct, we should see a heck of a phone when it comes to the market this fall. But hardware is only half the equation; if you're Google, it's even less than half.

Google is and always has been a software company. Most of the services Google produces are applications and software that people love, even though there are plenty of other things about the company that we love a lot less. Google has been under fire lately over privacy issues, but it's worth remembering that Google has never hidden how it makes its money. We agreed to give our details away in exchange for services like Android, Google Photos, or Chrome because they really are that good.

We'll talk more about privacy concerns and controversies in the future because both matter, but right now, let's have a look at Android 12. Android 12 brings some pretty big changes under the hood that make it more secure, protect our private data, and give us more control over it all. But the elephant in the room is, of course, the bold redesign that Google is calling Material You.

You may love what you see in Material You, or you may hate it. You'll probably love or hate it even more once you actually get a chance to see the final changes on actual phones when Android 12 finally launches this fall. Personally, I'm not feeling it, but I like things to be very clean and simple, which puts me in the minority. That's important — not the part about what I like, but the part that says I'm in the minority. Most people seem to like what they've seen so far.

Samsung's version of Android 12 will look like Samsung's version of Android 11.

Another important thing is that you're not going to see anything at all like Google showed us at I/O 2021 on the vast majority of Android phones when Android 12 rolls out. Companies like Samsung and Xiaomi (along with other popular Chinese brands) are the companies that sell almost every Android phone, and they have their own look and feel that won't be abandoned.

I'm essentially saying that the Material You that we've been shown so far will only live on Google's Pixel line and other phones that follow Google's lead when it comes to "stock" Android. The most striking bit of Material You — the system colors being pulled from your wallpaper and used in all your Google apps and widgets — is Pixel-exclusive at launch, and we have no idea when even other "stock" Android phones might see it.

Here's where things get really interesting. Material You and the new Android 12 UI look a lot like what Samsung gives us with its current version of One UI. At least on the surface, anyway. There is no one-to-one comparison, but the general look with large UI components, colorful controls, customizability, and readability are things that Samsung has been doing for well over a year, and people absolutely love it.

Yes, I'm saying that Google is trying to make the Pixel phone interface look and act more like Samsung's. Fight me.

Android 12 Color Extraction

I think Google is doing this because it finally cares about selling Pixel phones. That doesn't mean the company didn't care before, but now there is a strong push to make the Pixel line sell well enough to at least try to turn a profit. The Pixel 6 is going to try and compete in a way that the previous Pixel phones never did with Pixel-only features like free "high-quality" photo storage in Google Photos, deep integration with your smart home, the best camera on any phone, and now a user interface that will appeal to more people.

Google isn't satisfied unless it is at the top.

Google is all about finding a way to grab the market by its nether regions and claw its way to the top of it. We've seen it from the company's inception — Google Search changed the way we all use the internet. Chrome and its success was a direct response to the question of how Google could take on Microsoft and Internet Explorer. Chromebooks were Google's response to those cheap netbooks we all loved to hate on. If Google is going to make a smartphone, it has plans to make the best-selling smartphone.

Android 12 Privacy Indicators Toggles

This doesn't mean Google will be successful. A lot depends on how Google will leverage its own silicon and new smartphone SoC debuting inside the Pixel 6 — yes, I'm certain that's going to happen. The Pixel 5 showed that Google could make a phone that is satisfying to use even on mid-range silicon, but it used an off-the-shelf SoC from Qualcomm. With its own chip, Google can create the perfect Android smartphone platform to rival the best Android phones today.

The Pixel 6's hardware is still a question mark — it may be terrible. But on the software side, Google is poised to take the Pixel 6 mainstream across North America, Europe, and Japan. It could be a huge success, or it could backfire, but at least Google would be showing up for the fight.

Try Android 12 today

Google Pixel 5

$699 at Amazon

Ready to take the best pictures ever?

The Pixel 5 is one of the best phones on the market today, especially from a photography and software perspective. With a dual-camera setup that partners perfectly with Google's algorithmic processing prowess, the Pixel is perfect for shutterbugs and for bleeding-edge beta testers. As part of the Android 12 Open Beta, you can also try out the latest Android features on the Pixel 5 before they arrive for everyone else this fall.

Source: androidcentral

Popular posts from this blog

Google Pay on Wear OS expands again, is now available in 37 countries

More people will be able to use their Wear OS watch for payments. Update, Sept 8 (5:30 p.m. ET) : Google Pay support expands to more countries. What you need to know Google Pay is getting expanded support in more countries. 16 additional countries will support contactless payments on the Galaxy Watch 4. The expanded support will also come to older Wear OS smartwatches "in the coming weeks." With the launch of the Galaxy Watch 4 , Google has highlighted some of the new app experiences that will come with the new Wear OS 3 update. Google Pay is among the apps that are getting a redesign based on Material You, but Google also announced that it's expanding support for more countries. As it stands, Google Pay only supports a handful of countries for contactless payments on Wear OS. Google is now adding 16 additional countries to the list, which include the following: Belgium Brazil Chile Croatia Czech Republic Denmark Finland Hong Kong Ireland New Zeal

How to watch England vs India: Live stream Fourth Test cricket online

Having bounced back from defeat with an impressive win in the third Test at Headingley, Joe Root's men will be hoping they can now forge an advantage as the series moves to London - watch every ball of this fourth Test with our England vs India live stream guide below. England managed to dismiss India for just 78 on Day 1 in a scintillating bowling display, but there was even better to come from the hosts' top-order batting, with all of the top three managing to notch up half-centuries in their first innings. Skipper Root meanwhile continued his extraordinary 2021 form, clocking up yet another three-figure score. With a buoyant home side now hoping to carry on where they left off, India captain Virat Kohli and head coach Ravi Shastri must unravel how their attack was so routinely undone with the new ball last time out. Kohli himself will also need to do more leading from the front, with the normally reliably prolific batsman having scored no more than 55 during any inni

Don't let your phone die out there — these are the best battery packs!

Nothing can turn your great Android phone from state-of-the-art to overpriced paperweight faster than a dead battery. The best portable chargers and power banks can help recharge your tech when life plays keep-away with your power outlets. Portable chargers used to be big, bulky, and slow, but USB-C power banks and Power Delivery charging standards have made things much faster — fast enough to charge laptops, even — and have allowed power banks to get slimmer and better than ever. There are plenty of options in every shape or size, but our favorite is the versatile Anker PowerCore III 10K Wireless. Still, there are plenty of other choices that rank among the best portable battery packs. Here are our top recommendations that you can buy today. Best overall: Anker PowerCore III 10K Wireless While most portable chargers only let you recharge your devices with wired charging, wireless portable chargers are finally becoming somewhat mainstream. There were several hurdles that earl

How to watch the Djokovic vs Medvedev: Live stream the US Open 2021 final o

History beckons for Novak Djokovic as the Serbian legend goes in search of two significant tennis records in this afternoon's grand finale at Flushing Meadows. Read on to find out how to get a 2021 US Open live stream and watch Novak Djokovic vs Daniil Medvedev online no matter where you are in the world. A win here for the 34-year old would see him overtake eternal rivals Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal for the most Grand Slam titles won, with all three veterans currently tied at 20 wins a piece. Victory in New York this afternoon would also see Djokovic complete the first male calendar slam in the Open Era. Aiming to make a piece of history of his own but stopping Djokovic is Russian star Daniil Medvedev who will be looking to finally claim his first slam title. The 25-year-old world no.2 has been in some of the best form of his career in the Big Apple having given up just a single set on his way to today's final. The match marks Medvedev's second major showdown