Google tests showing pending app installs on the Android home screen
There’s a lot to see about Android 12. We’ve already gone over most of the key details of Google’s new operating system in several posts, and we now have a hands-on as well for anyone interested in looking at the first beta of Android 12 just a little bit closer. While Android 12 itself has been in the works for months and we already had the chance to play around with some developer previews, this beta resembles the finished product a little bit more closely, and we’re really liking what we see so far. Several improvements and changes to the way some Google products work were also showcased, but Google might be testing a few new tweaks as well. One of them is that pending app installs now show up on your home screen.
This information comes from a tip we received from Brae (@outbraegeous on Twitter). They have a Pixel 5 running Android 12 Beta 1, with Google Play Store version 25.3.17-21, and is using the Pixel Launcher as their default launcher app. The first thing we should address here is that we don’t yet know whether this is a feature that’s tied to Android 12, the Pixel Launcher, or the Google Play Store (or all three of them). It’s definitely an A/B test, however: we didn’t manage to get it working on our end, despite having a Pixel device (Pixel 3 XL) running Android 12 with the same version of both the Google Play Store and Pixel Launcher apps.
The Pixel Launcher here shows icons for both currently downloading as well as pending apps on the Google Play Store right on the home screen. If you want this on your device, you can try using the same combination of the Google Play Store version and Pixel Launcher, although we can’t guarantee it’ll work on your end since it didn’t on ours.
Thanks to Brae for the tip!