Google has announced six new features for Android devices to improve user experience, emphasizing that the new updates focus primarily on users’ safety.
Google is now introducing the Android Earthquake Alerts System in more countries like Turkey, the Philippines, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
The alert system was first launched in 2020 to help people in affected areas get alerts seconds before an earthquake hits. The Android Earthquake Alerts System was recently launched in New Zealand and Greece.
“We are prioritising launching Earthquake Alerts in countries with higher earthquake risks, and hope to launch in more and more countries over the coming year,” Google said.
Google adds the ability to “star” important conversations. Users can now bookmark specific messages and can quickly refer back to them later. All you need to do is tap and hold the message, then star it.
If you want to revisit a message, like your friend’s address or the photo from your family reunion, you just need to tap on the starred category.
Google noted that the starred messages feature will be rolling out to the Messages app over the coming weeks.
Google’s Keyboard will suggest custom emoji creations based on users' messages. However, Emoji Kitchen suggestions are currently available only for users using the beta version of Gboard.
Google has confirmed that the feature will be available to all Gboard users this summer for messages written in English, Spanish and Portuguese on devices running Android 6.0 and above.
Users can now ask Google to open or search their favourite apps using their voice. For example, they can say things like, “Hey Google, pay my bill” to jump right into the app and complete the task.
Voice Access offers users quick and efficient navigation with just their voice. With gaze detection (in beta), you can ask Voice Access to work only when you look at the screen.
In addition, it has enhanced password input. When it recognizes a password field, it will allow you to enter letters, numbers, and symbols. For example, you can say symbol names, such as "dollar sign" to enter a $. Therefore, it’s faster to enter your password securely.
Android Auto users can now customize their launcher screen directly from the phone and set the dark mode manually. Google has also added new app experiences to improve your drive. EV charging, parking, and navigation apps are now available to use in Android Auto.