On September 29 2015, Google Announced the first devices that would be running Android Marshmallow. These devices are the Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P and the Pixel C. Marshmallow is Android version 6.0, which is the update from Lollipop. There are several new changes that were brought with this update, as Google tries to improve performance, battery life and functionality. While we could talk for days about all the small changes, lets go through some of the most important ones. Please pay attention because there will be a test at the end of this article and if you fail it I’m going to tell your mommy.
Even though Google still doesn’t want any microSD cards being put into their Nexus devices, they have improved SD card support with Android 6.0. This is mostly due to developer demand for this feature. In Lollipop, you could use an SD card, and read it as external storage. Now you’ll be able to read an SD card as internal storage. This means that apps and app data can be stored on the SD card without a problem. You’ll also be able to see detailed storage usage through your settings menu. It’s like getting out of the shower and putting on warm slippers.
If you’ve ever owned a Nexus device, you’ll notice the lack of any sort of file explorer. That’s because Android has not had a stock file explorer until Marshmallow. If you go into the storage settings and scroll to the bottom, you can select Explore which will launch the native file manager app. This makes it much easier to browse all of your files in one place. Holy cow.
You’ve probably used a RAM manager or task killer as a third party application. Now this feature is built right into Android. You can see your RAM usage in the settings menu, as well as force stop memory hungry applications. You’ll finally see how much RAM is used by your iLuvKitties app.
App permissions have been overhauled and now offer much better functionality. You can see all apps that have access to one specific feature on your phone. So you can see when Facebook has access to your sperm samples and reject that.
Fingerprint support is now a native feature that is supported on Android 6.0. This super fast fingerprint technology comes just in time for the Android Pay launch, which needs the fingerprint scanner for the payment transactions. Most devices with a fingerprint scanner let you use other body parts. So, get creative cowboy.
This is the new battery preservation system that is designed to extend the life of your battery. If you have used apps like Greenify, then you’ll be familiar with how this works. Apps that are not in use are put to sleep, so their not soaking up your battery juice.
“Doze: If a user unplugs a device and leaves it stationary, with its screen off, for a period of time, the device goes into Doze mode, where it attempts to keep the system in a sleep state. In this mode, devices periodically resume normal operations for brief periods of time so that app syncing can occur and the system can perform any pending operations.”
Google Now on Tap
Google now has transformed into Google Now on Tap. You can press and hold the home button to activate Now on Tap. Then Google will look for keywords on your screen and pull up relevant information. As of the time of this writing, Now on Tap sucks and barely works, but the kings at Google will probably make it better over time as they get access to even more of our data and learn more about us than our mommies.
That’s about all the new cool stuff you can expect to see in Android 6.0. Lots of features that will keep you happy for a few hours, until you remember how sad and lonely you are.