The middle of the year heralds Google’s I/O conference, and that’s happening right now, with talk on how to make Google Cardboard, Android Wear, and other things better, but Android is pivotal, and Google is already talking about the next generation of its mobile platform.
And while there’s only a little information, the letter on everyone’s lips is “M”.
That’s what the next version of Android will start with, or the codename anyway, as Google’s Lollipop makes its way into an M-sounding sweet, we hope.
Will it be Macaron? Meringue? Milk chocolate?
Google isn’t saying what the official codename will be, but has mentioned that the next generation of its Android mobile operating system will include a new battery saving feature called “Doze” which will use motion detection to work out when the phone isn’t being used and pull back on what apps are doing in the background to give you a little more battery life.
Apps will also talk more to Google Now, so that when you’re looking through messages or reading a website, when you call up the Google Now voice assistant, it will know roughly what you’re doing and try to help you so you can ask it less questions.
And fingerprint technology — which is something Samsung, Oppo, HTC, and Huawei have all been including in various handsets for a while now — will finally be supported by more than just those companies.
In Android M, Google will support fingerprints more, allowing people to pay for things using fingerprints, and not just apps, but actual products. In fact, Google will have a version of a payment technology working over Near-Field Communication, which should mean you’ll be able to pair up your credit or debit card with your phone and pay simply by tapping your phone to a payment terminal.
Google’s Android M isn’t expect until later in the year, and customers will likely have to wait for manufacturers to get their heads around it, meaning your brand new Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge or HTC One M9 will actually need it released for the device before you can attempt to use any of these features, but it’s a good bet there should be something out late this year if not early next, so it shouldn’t be too long before these features arrive for your phone.