Google has started rolling out its newest version of the Android operating system, starting with its own line of Pixel smartphones. Android 10 features a dark mode as well as additional controls for privacy and location.
Android is used by many manufacturers, making updates notoriously slower to arrive to everyone compared to its biggest competitor, Apple’s iOS, but Google says it is working with partners to launch and upgrade devices to Android 10 “this year”.
New gesture controls allowing users to use simple swipes to go backwards rather than tapping are also on board Android 10.
Google says it has made almost 50 changes related to privacy and security, including a new privacy section under settings, where controls for web and app activity, and ad settings, are kept in one place. “You can choose to only share location data with apps while you’re using them,” the company explains.
“You’ll also receive reminders when an app that you are not actively using is accessing your location, so you can decide whether or not to continue sharing.”
The firm is still working on some features that are only available as a beta test for now, such as a focus mode which silences the apps people designate as distracting.
Meanwhile, users will no longer have to wait for manufacturers to push out important security and privacy fixes themselves, as they can now be sent out by Google directly via Google Play instead.
Android 10 marks the end of Google’s long-standing tradition of naming the releases after desserts or “tasty treats”, after the last version known as Android Pie.
The technology firm decided to stop the naming sequence after receiving feedback that not everyone understood the names used.