Android 11’s beta is over. The final version of the new OS starts to roll out Tuesday for owners of some Pixel, OnePlus, Oppo, Xiaomi, and realme phones. It’s not the most revolutionary update Google has ever released, but folks who like to talk to friends across different apps or share videos of their screens should get excited.
Google created a new “Bubbles” interface for messaging, which will fold all your message notifications from various apps into one section of the notifications area. As you can see in the GIF below, that means text messages, Facebook Messenger chats, and more will live in the same place and switching between them is as easy as tapping the corresponding bubble.
On top of that, Android 11 features built-in screen recording for the first time. It’s been a popular and essential iPhone feature for a while, making it a somewhat rare case of Android playing catch-up with an important feature. On top of that, long pressing the power button will open up a quick hub for interacting with connected smart devices so you don’t have to go into their respective apps anymore.
Finally, Google made some small privacy changes. You can grant a one-time camera, microphone, and location permissions to apps in case you only plan on using them sporadically. On top of that, apps you haven’t used recently will have their permissions automatically reset, so you’ll have to grant them again if you feel like it.
Again, this isn’t going to completely change the way Android works. But Android 11 is at least something for Android devotees to get excited about, especially as the tech world prepares to spend an entire month talking about that other phone company.