Today we're officially introducing Android 9 Pie. Best of all, if you don't want to wait for the update to reach your phone via an over-the-air update, you can download the factory images from Google right now. Also of note is that the Essential Phone is now receiving its update to Android Pie, which is a great move by Essential. Essential has been doing great with Android updates lately, and it's awesome to see the company release its Android Pie update on the same day as Google sends it to Pixel phones. Google's Android P was available in beta for the last four odd months, but the Android 9 Pie is the version ready for masses and it will be rolling out to compatible phones from tonight.
With the initial release, Google focused on giving developers access to new APIs, changes, and tools required to build apps for Android 9 Pie.
The date is hardly a surprise since both the original Pixel and the Pixel 2 were also unveiled on October 4 of 2016 and 2017. Devices from Nokia, Vivo, OnePlus, Xiaomi, Sony, Essential, and Oppo, all of which participated in the beta program, will receive Android 9 Pie by the end of the fall. It does come with support for a few gestures that are similar to what we have seen in the iPhone X. But despite keeping the same material design - now whiter and flatter - it is definitely a bigger release than the Android 8 was compared to the Android 7. For apps that aren't commonly used, the phone will put them to sleep so they don't draw as much power. Once you've accepted your invitation, Digital Wellbeing will appear in your phone's Settings app. So we've been working to add key capabilities right into Android to help people achieve the balance with technology they're looking for.More news: Small plane crashes in Southern California parking lot; 5 killed, authorities say
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This fall, Google will also roll out a feature called Slices, which will show relevant info from your apps when you want it.
Whether Samsung will take as long as it usually does or bring this year's major Android upgrade sooner remains to be seen (we're hoping for the former thanks to Project Treble).
Another new feature is Adaptive Brightness, which learns "how you like to set the brightness in different settings, and does it for you". It then display that action on their phone.