While the tech world is anticipating the next Android version at Google's I/O 2018, a new report has surfaced that reveals some of the next-generation features that are heading to the new Android iteration. The new version, which is so far in the headlines as Android P, is said to support smartphones with a "notch", similar to the iPhone X. It is also reported to have a tight Google Assistant integration as well as support for new designs, including multiple screens and foldable display panels, to ultimately convince several iPhone users to switch to Android devices. All this contrasts the next iOS version that is already reported to favour performance and stability instead of offering some major new features.
Google is building an overhaul of its Android platform to start supporting hardware notch natively to compress cameras and other sensors in a single cutout design, reports Bloomberg. The notch design received market focus with the arrival of the iPhone X last year, though Android co-founder Andy Rubin brought the Essential Phone even before the iPhone X launch, particularly in May last year, with a small notch for the front-facing camera sensor. Following the latest iPhone arrival with the notch, some Chinese companies imitated the Apple flagship and brought models such as the Oukitel U18 with a similar top covering. However, Samsung mocked the notch design of the iPhone X in a commercial.
Having said that, Google is now reportedly all set to add notch capabilities into Android. Huawei is likely to be among the first few manufacturers to start using the notch design. Similarly, Moto X5 was rumoured last month with an iPhone X-like notch.
Alongside the notch support, Bloomberg claims that this year's Android update will expand Google Assistant integration. There are also plans to let developers integrate Google's voice-based technology within their native apps. Google is also said to integrate the search bar on Android home screen with its personal assistant. However, the Google Assistant availability for developers and its presence in the search bar are yet to be finalised, as per the Bloomberg report.
It is additionally reported that Android P will come with a "dramatic redesign". This suggests that Google could release Material Design 2 or the next version of its Material Design language to give a fresh look and feel. Moreover, the uplifted design would help the company attract more iPhone buyers to start preferring Android smartphones as their next pick.
Some earlier reports claimed that Android P will come features such as native call recording support and the ability to allow carriers to hide signal strength. We need to wait until the I/O 2018 to understand what's cooking up at Google's labs. The developer conference is taking place between May 8 and May 10 at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, California. Meanwhile, you can expect some more rumours revealing the new features of the next Android version.