Google Released Android 12L to Make Android Experience on Tablets and Foldable Better

 Google has officially revealed the release of Android 12L, a special edition that aims to make the Android 12 experience on large screen devices even better than it is now. 

Android 12L does not include any major new features, but rather improvements and tweaks to the level of the Android user interface to make it more usable on tablets and foldable devices, across notifications, quick settings, lock screen, overview, the home screen, and more.

Android 12L brings an improvement in the lock screen design for large screen devices where the screen lock pattern and PIN controls on tablets are now displayed on the side of the screen for easier access, and users can also simply tap on the other side of the screen to bring the pin/pattern controls over to that side.

On the other hand, the appearance of the notification center, which includes both the notification panel and the quick settings, has been changed to take advantage of the large space available on tablets and foldable devices, as it has been divided so that the quick settings menu appears alone on the left of the screen, while notifications appear on the right of the device screen. 

The lock screen also uses a larger two-column layout, to highlight notifications and clock.

The Settings app in Android 12L also consists of two sections to help users set up their devices on one page without having to press the back button each time to switch between settings. The sidebar that contains the settings sections remains fixed as you move between them, while the center part of the screen changes depending on the section chosen, almost like in the iPad OS settings.

Google added a new taskbar for Android 12L on tablets and foldable devices that enable users to launch applications and do multiple tasks simultaneously with complete ease. You can tap apps from this taskbar to launch them or drag them to one of the screen sides to launch the app in split-screen mode.

In split-screen mode, a black bar appears between the applications in this mode, and you can drag it left and right to control how much space each application occupies on the screen. In addition, you can swipe up to go back to the Home screen using gestures or use the quick switch gesture to switch between recent apps.

 Users can also use a new "Split" action in the overview to start split-screen mode with a tap, and they can as well show or hide the taskbar at any time with a long press.

Android versions 12 and higher enable apps to be launched in split-screen mode regardless of whether the app is optimized to run in this mode or not, so developers need to make necessary improvements for their apps to run efficiently in this mode.

Speaking of compatibility, visual and stability improvements has been made for Android 12L  compatibility mode, that enables users to run apps that have not been adapted and optimized for use with large screens, giving them a better view by default. Additionally, Manufacturers can now make several customizations for apps in compatibility mode in Android 12L, such as configuring the app aspect ratio, applying rounded corners to the app window, and setting the status bar transparency.

Lastly, and in order to make it easier for people to find apps optimized to work on tablets and foldable devices, Google has made some changes to the Play Store especially for these devices, with users now seeing a notification on the app's Play Store listing page when the app isn't compatible with devices with large screens, as well as suggestions for similar apps that will work best on their devices.

The Play Store is also introducing large-screen-specific app ratings so that users will be able to rate how apps work on their large-screen devices.

The Android 12L update will be available on Samsung, Lenovo, and Microsoft foldable tablets over time.  If you have a Lenovo P12 Pro tablet, you can try this version of Android from now, otherwise, you can also configure a virtual Android 12L machine using Android Studio Chipmunk (version 2021.2.1 or higher).

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