June 27th, 2012, 11:41 PM
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean Coming Mid July 2012
Android Jellybean might not be the
revolutionary 5.0 that we might have once
been expecting, but this doesn't really mean
much. Being unveiled at Google I/O 2012,
Android 4.1 brings along a whole host of
features to build upon the work started by
Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.
Google didn't make a huge deal about the
new platform, which makes sense given it
was also talking about the Google Nexus 7
and the Google Glass project too.
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean release date
OTA updates are scheduled to be pushed
out mid-July, however this is initially to
Motorola Xoom , Samsung Galaxy Nexus and
Nexus S devices.
The good news for everyone else? Google
has announced the Android Platform
Development Kit, which means
manufacturers and chipset vendors will be
working with the search giant up to three
months before each release of Android in
the future - so waiting for each new iteration
could be a thing of the past.
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean is going to be
quick and saves battery
As Dave Burke, Engineering Director puts it,
Android Jellybean is going to be "buttery
smooth". Android 4.1 has been updated to
be "fast, fluid and smooth", using Project
We could get into technical details of Triple
Buffering (GPU/CPU and Display in sync),
improved frame rates (60fps across the
devices) and touch anticipation, but in
essence: this translates into a faster,
smoother user experience.
Using Touch Input Boost, Android 4.1 boosts
the CPU so that loading times are faster,
and therefore uses less battery power.
Updates to Google Play also mean that now
app updates are smarter. Rather than
downloading and installing the whole
installation file, apps only install changed
elements, making them on average 66%
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean looks and plays
As the heart of the Android experience, it
would be unfair if the homescreen had been
ignored. Thankfully, it hasn't. Moving
widgets between different homescreens is
now more intuitive, with apps and widgets
moving out of the way to accommodate.
Apps also move around when resizing
As with every Android iteration, there comes
another keyboard. Android 4.1 brings over a
new adaptive keyboard that learns your
typing and can predict the next word before
you've typed it.
Jellybean also brings a new Arabic font, and
18 new languages including Persian, Hindi
and Thai. Support for blind users is also
improved, with gesture support, and
Bluetooth supported for external Braille
Previously being the preserve of those with
fast data connections, Google have shrunk
the data for the Voice package so it fits on
your individual Android devices too. It
currently only supports US English, but local
packages are in the works.
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean camera
Another update in the new iteration of
Android is to the camera app. Whilst Android
4.0 brought fast image capturing, 4.1 takes
Image capture is smoother, but it is in the
photo review where the major changes lie.
Pinching brings a photo strip of all taken
photos, with the swipe to delete making it
easier to quickly remove unwanted images.
Don't worry though, there is an undo button
making its way to the interface as well, so
even if you accidentally scrub out that
picture of a cat you once saw, it's not gone
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean loves NFC
Android Beam now comes with the ability to
send photos and videos to other NFC
enabled devices, and allows instant pairing
with NFC enabled Bluetooth devices.
Google is obvioulsy impressed with this
functionality, although we're not sure how
that handling of videos and photos is going
to be handled - we saw hide nor hair of Wi-
Fi Direct compatibility on the Google Nexus
7, so it seems media will be sent via
This means much slower download speeds -
odd given the Samsung Galaxy S3 can
manage the same NFC trick but do it all at a
miuch higher transfer rate.
Jellybean Notifications are far more
Notifications now provide more information,
as well as becoming actionable. This means
that a missed call notification allows you to
immediately call back, calendar apps allow
you to email everyone going or you can
like/+1 other notifications right from your
They also become expandable, with the top
notification automatically being larger and
showing more information, or by swiping
down the screen with two fingers to enlarge
Google's recently launched Knowledge
Graph feature on standard Google search
has become mobile. A new clean simple UI
provides "cards" of information showing you
quick info, such as weather forecasts.
Swiping away the cards brings up a full web
Using the improved voice typing feature
(part of the new Google Now line-up in the
browser), voice searching is quicker and
more intuitive. Asking who the Prime
minister of Japan is brings up a card, and
speaks to you telling you its Yoshihiko Noda.
Alternatively you can ask it to show
pictures, starting an image search.
Jellybean knows you
It sounds scary, but Jellybean learns about
you using Google Now. Using your search
and location history, as well as
appointments in your calendar, your device
becomes more interactive.
With a swipe up from the bottom of the
screen, Google Now will keep you updated
on your favourite sports teams, provide
weather and travel details, such as traffic
data or when the next bus is. It can even tell
you when to leave to get to your
appointment on time.
Android iterations traditionally come with a
new device, and Jellybean heralds the Asus
Nexus 7, a 7 inch tablet with 1280x800
resolution screen, front facing camera, NFC,
Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, as well as providing 9
hours of video or 300 hours of standby
It is also the first device to launch with
Chrome as the standard browser. C
June 30th, 2012, 11:17 AM