Pixel Launcher from Android 11 hints at showing suggested apps on the home screen dock

Pixel Launcher from Android 11 hints at showing suggested apps on the home screen dock

The first Android 11 developer preview is now available for download. If you’re a Google Pixel user, you can head on over to our guide to download the release for your device and then you can install the Android 11 developer preview with our guide for Pixel devices here. The first developer preview includes a number of changes from Android 10, a bunch of privacy and security features, and a couple of developer-focused changes. Google is scheduled to release two more developer previews and three betas before the stable Android 11 release. In the meantime, we’ll be combing through the latest release to find everything new that’s coming in the next Android release. We’ve already spotted a number of upcoming features in the current release, including a new increased touch sensitivity option for the Pixel 4 series, a new Motion Sense gesture to pause music, a redesigned Notification History page, a new screenshot preview, and more. Now, we’ve spotted new strings of code in the Pixel Launcher from Android 11 that point towards an upcoming feature called “hotseat”.

An APK teardown can often predict features that may arrive in a future update of an application, but it is possible that any of the features we mention here may not make it in a future release. This is because these features are currently unimplemented in the live build and may be pulled at any time by the developers in a future build.

The current version of the Pixel Launcher suggests apps based on your activity. These suggestions show up as a row of apps underneath the recent apps screen and in the top row within the app drawer (as seen in screenshots below). The upcoming “hotseat” feature builds upon this behavior and shows suggested apps in place of the dock on the home screen. These suggested apps are based on your usage and they replace the bottom row of apps on the home screen.

Current behavior

According to the code, Google will give users the option to opt-in for the new feature and pin apps to the hotseat — which is the bottom row of apps or the dock on the home screen. While setting up the feature, users will see a couple of prompts explaining how it works, including instructions to pin apps to the hotseat, hide suggested apps, and remove apps manually. The code also references a pin prediction feature that will, most likely, suggest apps that you should pin to the hotseat based on your usage.

<string name="hotseat_items_migrated">Your hotseat items have been moved to the last page.</string>
<string name="hotseat_migrate_accept">"I'm in"</string>
<string name="hotseat_migrate_dismiss">No thanks</string>
<string name="hotseat_migrate_message">To pin a favorite app, drag it over a suggested app. To hide a suggested app, touch &amp; hold it.</string>
<string name="hotseat_migrate_prompt_content">Tap to set up</string>
<string name="hotseat_migrate_prompt_title">Get suggested apps on the home screen</string>
<string name="hotseat_migrate_title">Suggested apps replace the bottom row of apps</string>
<string name="hotseat_no_migration">You can remove items from the hotseat manually to see suggested apps in their spot.</string>
<string name="hotseat_onboard_notification_detail">Tap here to set it up</string>
<string name="hotseat_onboard_notification_title">Your hotseat just got smarter</string>
<string name="pin_prediction">Pin Prediction</string>

Thanks to PNF Software for providing us a license to use JEB Decompiler, a professional-grade reverse engineering tool for Android applications.