Android Q Has a Built-In Desktop Mode

Joanna Estrada
March 15, 2019

This initial version of the beta is now only available for Google's Pixel smartphones, including the first-generation Pixel devices.

While initial predictions on the matter didn't pan out, it still didn't take long for Google to debut the first developer preview of Android Q after media reports suggesting the launch is imminent began emerging on Monday. No more turning your router this way and that to find the sticker with the password on it.

What is a beta/developer preview?

Google is expanding support for passive authentication methods such as face in Android Q, but there's no 3D face recognition support mentioned.

The third option is to set up an Android Emulator to run the beta. We expect that will be some time this summer for Android Q. Android Q is also adding "experimental support" for ANGLE on top of Vulkan, which is "a graphics abstraction layer designed for high-performance OpenGL compatibility across implementations".

Android has lacked a clear-cut way to view what apps have access to what data on your device. It's very much like Microsoft's Windows Insider programme.

So, one way is to get enrolled in the Android Beta program using the link given below, after which the Beta 1 will automatically land your Pixel phone via OTA update. Google expects to have six beta releases this year before the final rollout, so you might want to wait for another couple of iterations.

Sign in using the Google account associated with Pixel device
Sign in using the Google account associated with Pixel device

Sign into your Google account when prompted. You should be able to disable or reset your advertising ID without being tracked, and Android Q makes that possible.

That's it, it's so simple. Coming to the Pixel phones, the original Pixel smartphones have already received the promised 2-year Android OS updates.

One potential problem, however, is that the change seems to affect any app running under Android Q, whether that app targets the version of Android or not.

If you want to try out the screen recording feature on your Pixel, you can check out our guide to enable screen recording in Android Q.

As noticed by Michael Young on Twitter, Android Q has a new option that allows users to force desktop mode. For users, this means both default and downloaded photography apps will have the potential to produce better effects and more effectively process images. Here's the site where you can download them. For instructions on flashing your device manually, head here.

Keep in mind flashing a system image will wipe all the information off your device, so ensure you back up important data beforehand.

For the time being, you'll need a Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL, Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL, Pixel or Pixel XL to get the beta.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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