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On Friday, the Android team’s Rich Hyndman took to the Google Developer YouTube channel to run through some of the new features introduced in the Android L developer preview. Most of this stuff we covered in a series of Android L feature posts, but for developers, the clip was a good refresher for the new goodies that can be taken advantage of. Rich talks everything from notifications to the new camera API to Material Design to the devices that the L preview is available on.
Developer Michael Panzer saw this video over the weekend, shared it to his G+ timeline, and asked Hyndman if we could expect to see updates to the L preview at some point before the release is made stable to the public. Rich actually responded, noting that “They’ll be some extras coming, like the 64bit emulator. But I don’t believe new device images are coming.” He later continued on, saying that the Android L “preview release is primarily for developers to be able to test their apps and get them ready for the L launch. It is the first time we’ve had a preview release and it will mean less chance of issues with apps in the Play Store at launch and more apps ready to take advantage of the new features.”
While we love this move by Google to release a preview of the next version of Android months ahead of time, you can imagine that this news is unfortunate for developers who are experiencing bugs with the preview that are affecting the way they develop apps. Apple releases multiple versions of its iOS beta builds before it reaches stable, so you would think that Google could do something similar. Then again, Google often does things their own way.
I personally would love to see new preview builds, but that’s because I just love Android. From a developers perspective, especially if they want their apps working flawlessly come the Android L launch, it would make a lot of sense for Google to consider it.