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Google Releases Android 7.1 Nougat Developer Preview 2

Good news for Android beta testers today: Android Nougat 7.1 Developer Preview 2 is now rolling out both over the air (OTA) and factory images. This comes over a month after the first preview of the future software upgrade for Nexus devices hit airwaves.

Within Android 7.1, Google adds support for app shortcuts and native round icons. In addition, an improved VR experience, longer battery life, better wallpaper integration with the system, and GIFs on the Google Keyboard are also present. So far, there appears to be just simple under the hood improvements and developer-oriented updates in DP2, but we’ll list them down below anyway for your reference.

Developer Preview 2 is a release candidate for Android 7.1.1 that you can use to complete your app development and testing in preparation for the upcoming final release. In includes near-final system behaviors and UI, along with the latest bug fixes and optimizations across the system and Google apps.

It also includes the developer features and APIs (API level 25) already introduced in Developer Preview 1. If you haven’t explored the developer features, you’ll want to take a look at app shortcuts, round icon resources, and image keyboard support, among others — you can see the full list of developer features here.

With Developer Preview 2, we’re also updating the SDK build and platform tools in Android Studio, the Android 7.1.1 platform, and the API Level 25 emulator system images. The latest version of the support library (25.0.1) is also available for you to add image keyboard support, bottom navigation, and other features for devices running API Level 25 or earlier.

For details on API Level 25 check out the API diffs and the updated API reference on the developer preview site.

It’s worth noting that this is the final developer preview of Android 7.1 Nougat for the Nexus devices. Next month, Google will release the update to the masses which, at that time, all supported devices will receive the new software simultaneously. This also includes the Pixel and Pixel XL which will each receive Android 7.1.1.

This time around, Google has brought in support for the Nexus 9 tablet, a device left out of the initial developer preview rollout of Android 7.1. A list of factory images for each device supported can be found below. For some reason, Google won’t be rolling out flashable OTA images for this preview, so you’ll either have to wait for the updated to build to automatically hit your device or manually flash the appropriate factory image yourself.

If you spot any notable changes in DP2 of Android 7.1 Nougat, email us at mbedded@icloud.com.


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Max Buondonno is a technology enthusiast who has been working as a journalist in this industry for more than a year. He has grown up in the age where everyone has a smartphone which has influenced his decision to become a professional technology writer, his passion in life. He's dipped his toes in the development of websites, while you can ask him anything about Apple, Google, or Microsoft and he's bond to give you an answer. He's reachable on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, and email.

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