Will the next version of Android get location privacy right?

Google Releases Android Q Beta for Developers, Early Adopters

If you thought the Pixel 3 and 3 XL were prematurely leaked and detailed past year, you may want to keep in mind the first Pixel 3 Lite hands-on photos surfaced online back in November and we still have no idea exactly when Google might be planning to release this mid-ranger. Well, the Android Q beta arrived as a first build and we took it for a quick spin.

Another new feature Google is including with Q is the ability to change your accent colours.

The beta is available to anyone with ANY Pixel phone - that includes the original Pixel and Pixel XL, as well as 2 and 3.

Despite the lack of an official confirmation about the company's next-generation Pixel phones including the Pixel 3 Lite, which is slated to hit the store shelves ahead of Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL, the rumor mill is churning all sorts of speculations around the company's next-generation Pixel phablet, which has surfaced online in the form of a new leak.

Google expects to offer six Android Q beta releases followed by a final release in Q3 2019. However, there is nothing to stop an app that has been granted that permission continuing to track users' locations even when it is not in use.

Google Releases Android Q Beta for Developers, Early Adopters

A new interesting feature is sharing WiFi via QR codes, which is much better than changing the password to some simple number array to make the network easier for sharing.

If you're frequently bothered by telemarketers and robot callers, Android Q wants to help with its screen feature. You'll be able to control an app's access to the Photos and Videos or Audio collections using new runtime permissions, and for Downloads, apps must use the system file picker to let you decide which downloaded files the app can access. So for example, you can only add app shortcuts to the desktop and nothing else. Google says this approach "can be useful when you need more control over testing, such as for automated testing or regression testing". By accessing the panel, you can immediately toggle your Wi-Fi, mobile data and Airplane Mode settings without having to go into the full Settings menu.

Most Android users have probably never heard of Android's Advertising ID (AAID), an identifier Google launched in 2013 so advertisers could legitimately track users whilst giving the latter the option to reset (i.e. wipe) the ID as often as they pleased.

You'll then get future beta updates and eventually the stable release automatically as they appear.

Unlike previous years, Google has gone beta out of the gate rather than developer preview. XDADevelopers have a way to make it active all the time, and if you have a Pixel and want the dark theme always on, check the method here. Be warned: this is unstable beta software.

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