Its official, Donut SDK is out. Android Developers Blog announced in a blog post the availability of Android 1.6 or Donut SDK availability. This blog post also clearly mentions the arrival of Android 1.6 based devices by October.
Android 1.6 now features framework-level support for different screen sizes, such as QVGA and WVGA, CDMA-based networks, like Sprint in the US and VPN (Virtual Private Network) via L2TP and IPSec. A new battery usage screen shows users exactly which programs and services are consuming battery power and the camera application now launches much faster.
If you are interested to see some highlights of Android 1.6, check out the video below.
New User Features
Quick Search Box for Android
Android 1.6 includes a redesigned search framework that provides a quick, effective, and consistent way for users to search across multiple sources—such as browser bookmarks & history, contacts, and the web—directly from the home screen.
The system constantly learns which search results are more relevant based on what is clicked. So popular contacts or apps that have previously been picked will bubble up to the top when a user types the first few letters of a relevant query.
The search framework also provides developers a way to easily expose relevant content from their applications in Quick Search Box.
New Camera/Camcorder UI
An updated user interface provides an integrated camera, camcorder, and gallery experience. Users can quickly toggle between still and video capture modes. Additionally, the gallery enables users to select multiple photos for deletion.
Android 1.6 also provides a much faster camera experience. Compared to the previous release, launching the camera is now 39% faster, and there is a 28% improvement in the time from completing one shot to the next.
A new Virtual Private Network (VPN) control panel in Settings allows users to configure and connect to the following types of VPNs:
* L2TP/IPSEC pre-shared key based VPN
* L2TP/IPsec certificate based VPN
* L2TP only VPN
* PPTP only VPN
Battery usage indicator
A new battery usage screen lets users see which apps and services are consuming battery power. If the user determines that a particular service or application is using too much power, they can take action to save the battery by adjusting settings, stopping the application, or uninstalling the application.
Users will be able to download new accessibility services built on the new accessibility framework and enable them in Settings.
Android Market Updates
For devices with Android Market, the latest version improves the overall user experience and makes it easier for users to discover great apps and games from developers.
* At the homescreen, users can choose among Apps, Games, and Downloads.
* Inside a category, users can explore titles that are Top paid, Top free, and Just in.
* For each title, users can now see screenshots submitted by developers in addition to reviews from other users.