How to use our top 6 favorite Android 11 features

September 21, 2020

How to use our top 6 favorite Android 11 features

Google has rolled out the Android 11 operating system and it doesn’t look drastically different when compared to Android 10, however, Google has added some really interesting features that can be very helpful for users.

Android 11 is mostly about communication and the biggest new features include mostly conversation-related systems; in addition to smart home controls and “recording your screen” functionality. Having said that, these features are being offered by many phones already. Regardless, here are our top 6 picks: 

Conversation notifications

In Android 10, the notification drawer contains your notifications in a random manner. While some of the apps get prioritized to the top, others are moved to the silent section, for which you receive no alerts. In Android 11, this system is different and has three notification categories: Conversations, Alerting, and Silent. The Conversations section, houses all your conversations. This would include any app you are using to directly communicate with someone else, such as text messages and chat apps. It would also include direct messages within other apps, such as Instagram.

You can prioritize conversations and apps within this section, such as putting messages on high priority. This way, you won’t miss important notifications. On the other hand, the Alerting and Silent sections function the same way as before with Android 11, you obviously have more control over notifications than ever before. 

Notification history

With instant swiping you are likely to lose your notifications but with Android 11, you have the option to save every single notification you received in the last 24 hours. You will find all the notifications in the running list. This is not a default feature, you will have to enter Settings, then Apps & notifications, moving to Notifications and then choosing Notification history, and then simply toggle the feature on. It needs to be on for you to view the notifications but interestingly the list will also include the silent notifications. While this way you are never going to lose important notifications, the silent notifications can clutter your list and make it less useful.

Chat bubbles in Android 11

Even though Chat bubbles were first introduced in Android 10, they were not prioritized by Google, and only with the launch of Android 11 have they taken the center stage. Chat bubbles work the same way as Facebook Messenger does on Android; each time you receive a message, the “chat head” appears on your phone, overlaying almost all apps. A tap on the icon leads you to the chat, which can be minimized back to an icon. When done with the conversation, chat heads can be removed until the next conversation starts. This is exactly how the bubble feature works for every other chat app, which are similar in design to the Messenger. 

Android 11 screen recorder

Even though there are plenty of third-party apps to record your screen, Android 11 comes with a native screen recorder. This feature might not be something new, but users at least won’t have to download an additional app. Located in the Quick Settings tiles, the Screen Record feature offers a few options, such as allowing you to capture audio along. It has limited functionality; for more features, you can always rely on your favourite third-party app. This is something you have on your phone and would serve the needs of many users just fine but for additional support, there are a plethora of options you can choose from. 

Smart device controls

Smart home tech trend is growing, recognising that Google has added a section that allows users to control various devices without needing an app. To launch the new tool, you can hold down the power button, underneath the usual power features, you will find a lot of options, including Google Pay shortcut. Right under that, there you will see a bunch of buttons connecting your smart home products. While Android 11 will pre-populate this field with six of your favorites, you have the option to add or remove devices. So now you can control devices, without having to open an individual app for each. This can be very liberating and would save so much time, considering you have to navigate your way around apps each time, with this feature, the process is just cut in half. 

One-time permissions and auto-reset

Google has faced some serious accusations of negligence related to the privacy and security of its users. With Android 11, users will have unprecedented control over privacy and security. The highlight of this new initiative is one-time permissions. With Android 10, when you first installed an app, you could opt-in to grant an app permissions all the time, only when you’re using the app, not otherwise. This was very helpful, but with Android 11 users get even more control by giving permissions only for that specific session.

To find out more about Android and Apple phones, follow our blog and we will make sure you stay ahead of the curve when it comes to tech related updates or you want to develop an android app so you can contact me!

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