Android N Developer Preview 4 now available to developers for testing

Google’s Android N is on the way to become a full fledged next generation operating system for Android smartphones. Taking the step in that direction, Google has released a fourth developer preview for Android N, including the Android N final SDK. The most important and likely change in DP4 is that the APIs have now been finalized and developers can now submit their Android N apps to the Google Play Store.

Developers have the option of submitting to alpha, beta, and production channels. They can also publish updates that use API 24 to their apps in Google Play. Google is also providing the final API to Android Studio 2.1.2 and higher, while also pushing system images to the emulator.

Coming in a build number NPD56N, factory images are now available for the Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X, Nexus 6, Nexus 9, Pixel C, Nexus Player, General Mobile 4G (Android One) and the Sony Xperia Z3. Full OTA images are also available, but not for the Z3. If you want to jump in the developer preview bandwagon but have not enrolled yet, you can always enroll your device in the Android Beta Program.

Here are some of the new feature changes at a glance:

• In previous versions of Android, an app activates with all of its locale resources loaded before locale negotiation begins. Starting in Android N DP4, the system negotiates resource locales individually for each resource object before the app activates.
• As announced at Developer Preview 3, we’ve deferred the Launcher Shortcuts feature to a later release of Android. In Developer Preview 4, we’ve removed the Launcher Shortcuts APIs.
• We’ve changed the BLE Scanning behavior starting in DP4. We’ll prevent applications from starting and stopping scans more than 5 times in 30 seconds. For long running scans, we’ll convert them into opportunistic scans.
• The Multi-Window android:minimalHeight and android:minimalWidth attributes have been renamed to android:minHeight and android:minWidth.

If you wish to go through the entire list of changes and bugs, click at this link.

The official name for Google N as Google Nutella (as it is supposed to named) is to be revealed soon. Google’s senior vice president for Android, Chrome OS, and Google OS Hiroshi Lockheimer posted the following message on Twitter, complete with a teaser image.

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Lockheimer was seen trolling through this tweet to the various questions about the actual name for Google N. Google will go with Nutella because it has a widespread usage. You’ve probably enjoyed the cocoa spread more than once in your lifetime. And Android Nutella sounds great, perhaps even better than Android KitKat a few years ago.

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