Google Launches Android 11

Posted on September 8, 2020 by Paul Thurrott in Android with 22 Comments

Google today announced the immediate availability of Android 11, the latest version of the most popular mobile computing platform.

“The latest release is all about helping you get to what’s important on your phone with easier ways to help you manage your conversations, connected devices, privacy, and much more,” Google vice president Dave Burke writes in the announcement post. “Android 11 will begin rolling out today on select Pixel, OnePlus, Xiaomi, OPPO[,] and realme phones, with more partners launching and upgrading devices over the coming months.”

Key new features in Android 11 include a new dedicated space for messaging apps in the notification pane; Bubbles, which present messaging app notifications visually so you don’t need to exit the app you’re already using; built-in screen recording; new pop-up interfaces for smart devices and media controls; wireless access to Android Auto; one-time and auto-reset permissions; and more.

For users on Pixel, Android 11 provides additional features, including Live View with Location Sharing in Google Maps, Smart Reply in Gboard (English only for now), app suggestions on the home screen, the ability to select text or images in screenshots, and more.

And for developers, Google is publishing the source to the new version of the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) in addition to Android 11 itself.

“Android 11 has a ton of new capabilities [for developers],” Google director Stephanie Cuthbertson notes. “You’ll want to check out conversation notifications, device and media controls, one-time permissions, enhanced 5G support, IME transitions, and so much more. To help you work and develop faster, we also added new tools like compatibility toggles, ADB incremental installs, app exit reasons API, data access auditing API, Kotlin nullability annotations, and many others.”

You can learn more about Android 11 here.

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Comments (22)

22 responses to “Google Launches Android 11”

  1. Cdorf

    I'll wait for you to try it :-)... oh and I have Samsung.... so I'll still wait

  2. crunchyfrog

    I just installed 11 on my Pixel 4a yesterday and I really saw the difference with the speed of upgrading with the changes Google has made under the hood on Android. Once downloaded, the phone did a quick reboot and it was done! I think that started as, 'Project Treble' if I'm not mistaken.

    • Paul Thurrott

      Yeah, the upgrade process is super-fast. I've installed all 8 iOS 14 betas and each takes forever.
  3. Thretosix

    The cat collecting game returning is my favorite feature. I've missed it.

  4. codymesh

    I suspect the vast majority of users aren't going to be excited for this release of Android.

  5. rusty chameleon

    Just installed it on my Pixel 2XL.

  6. RonV42

    I am sure it will hit 30% of phones in the next 6 years.

  7. JerryH

    Installing it now on a Pixel 4XL...

  8. greenloco

    Okay, how do I take a screenshot now ?


  9. rusty chameleon

    Pixel users: "I got it today!".

    Samsung users: "Call me in nine months when I finally get this".

    • Paul Thurrott

      It's like when Microsoft delivers Windows 10 versions first to Surface users! /crickets
    • jgraebner

      In reply to rusty chameleon:

      Of course, Samsung phones already have had some of the new features for a while. That's part of the reason why I didn't feel too concerned about switching from a Pixel to a Note this year. For the most part, the recent Android releases have primarily brought to the stock OS features that were added by OEMs a while back.

      • wosully

        In reply to jgraebner:

        Wasn't there some talk about Google pushing out updates like a new OS though the Play Store, circumventing the carriers? I feel if this were the case it would help quite a bit for many handsets.

        • rusty chameleon

          In reply to wosully:

          Unlike iOS, a high fraction of the updates ARE pushed through apps and Google Play Services through the Play Store. Many of the updates in iOS would be Play Store updates in Android, which is why "OS Updates" on Android are less inclusive than on iOS, as more of those items are updated separately.

        • Paul Thurrott

          Google did separate a lot of OS components into store-deliverable "apps" so that they can be updated outside of the OS.
    • jbinaz

      In reply to rusty chameleon:

      This (delayed updates due to Samsung and my carrier [AT&T]), and my growing mistrust of Google in regard to my privacy are why I'm switching to iOS once the iPhone 12 is released. I'll have to give up a few conveniences, but I've reached the point where I find the trade-off worth it.

      • zeratul456

        In reply to jbinaz:

        I've already switched. Bought a used Iphone 8 and it works like a dream even though it's old. If it had been a Pixel it woulda had been out of updates by now seeing as it launched in 2017. Naturally that is not the case.

  10. ghostrider

    Really looking forward to this - Android is a very mature platform now that just get's better with each release. Luckily I have a Pixel, so I expect to get it very, very soon.

  11. CharlesWallace

    My favorite part of this article was the added oxford comma:

     Xiaomi, OPPO[,] and