Android Marshmallow was released on October 15, 2015 and only 7.5% of Android devices with access to the Google Play Store have it. But that’s not the only concern as some devices aren’t really going to get it. That’s not even the worst part: Google will be announcing a revision of their mobile operating system at its annual developer conference. Put simply, Google will be detailing changes for Android while the current version (Android 6.0 or Marshmallow) is struggling to get to devices.
Yes, the base operating system you have on your smartphone may not be that big of a deal. However, there will be moments when you wish your device was compatible with the update. On that note, here’s a look at the key features you will be missing out on:
Google Now on Tap
This is perhaps the update with the most significance for smartphone users, particularly those who do a lot of searching. It’s essentially an improvement from Google Now which was introduced back in KitKat. While Now offered time and context-sensitive notifications, information and reminders, Google Now on Tap just straight up delivers the additional information you need.
For instance, you could be reading an article about the 2016 US elections. When you activate Now on Tap, you will be given results about people, places or things mentioned in the article.
Tap may also provide app suggestions depending on the content you are consuming at the moment. For example, a friend sends you a text message suggesting you have dinner at a certain Italian restaurant. Tap can suggest apps, be it Maps or UrbanSpoon, for the restaurant named in the message.
After Google Now on Tap, this is probably the next best thing on the Marshmallow update. This is an intelligent battery management feature capable of recognizing when your device is not being used. For instance, if your phone has been lying on your bedside table for a while, it sets your phone to hibernate. But the battery management powers of Doze is so much more than that.
It is said that Doze can extend the battery life of your device for up to two weeks. Normally, your smartphone loses battery life by an average of 15 to 25% overnight. Doze is changing that by cutting it down to 3 to 5%.
iOS has been at this for years, and Android has just caught up. You will be asked to grant individual app permissions the first time an app requests access to them. What this means is you have control over what an app can access, particularly something as critical as your microphone and camera.