The latest chapter of the mobile war is in full swing. In conjunction with Monday’s 2017 solar eclipse, Google revealed the official name of its latest mobile OS as Android Oreo. The update is undergoing carrier testing for Pixel ($599.99 at Amazon.com) phones and the Nexus 5X and 6P, and should roll out “soon,” according to Google. The Pixel C ($645.95 at Amazon.com) and Nexus Player will also be compatible with the update. Select phones from Samsung, LG, Motorola, Essential, HTC, Huawei, Sony, Nokia, Kyocera and Sharp will either launch with or update to Oreo through the end of 2017.
The OS was first announced in May as Android O, during Google’s annual I/O 2017 developer conference. It was there that the company gave a first taste of its forthcoming software for phones, tablets and Android TV.
Afterward, Apple responded with iOS 11, its next-gen platform for iPhones and iPads. Which one’s winning so far? We won’t really know until we get iOS 11 and Android Oreo on phones side by side, but on the whole, Android Oreo is coming out ahead.
So let’s take a look at Oreo and everything it has to offer.
If you’re hoping for a ton of crazy features that make the OS look and feel completely different, it’s time to temper your expectations. Like Android 7.0 Nougat, Android 8.0 Oreo focuses mostly on the nuts and bolts of making the software work better and faster and save battery.
This is all good, though. It means your battery should last longer and your device should speed up everything from navigating around to processing really complex photo tasks.
But don’t worry, there are still some decadent goodies in here, like a cool picture-in-picture feature that makes multitasking more convenient; a much easier copy/paste that seems way cooler than it has any right to be; and password autofill in Chrome for Android that’s going to save you time and typing.
If you want to see it for yourself, but don’t have the update just yet, you can check out the latest iteration of Google’s Android Oreo public beta.