Introduction and Hardware used
Google has come a long way in the past years improving their OS on mobile devices! Previous iterations like Jelly Bean and KitKat complemented the hardware aspect! Bringing us Project Butter for enhanced performance, screen size interface scaling (adapting to the screen’s height, width, and DPI), Google now cards (microphone voice activated personal assistant), Android Beam plus Tap and Pay over NFC support, immersive mode allowing more on screen real estate inside of apps (removing onscreen keys and the notification tray), multi account use on tablets to share your hardware with family/friends, and the list goes on! This new evolutionary move we have now improves our software experience within the OS plus adding more unique hardware tweaks! I have a Nexus 7 (2012) 16GB code name grouper aka nakasig running this new OS, an elder device, but a Google qualified device! My challenge was to see how this particular device would stand up to the all new Android 5.0 Lollipop, time away from the ROM community (CyanogenMod and others), and give you my Stock Android experience Revisited!
Starting with the all new look and feel of Android running GNL (Google now launcher), it’s very basic, but genius! Apps, widgets, and folders define the interface as usual, but Google now is front, to the left, and voice activated. With a quick swipe right on the main home screen or a swipe up from the home key I am greeted with a personally adapting informative card like interface (personal introduction to relative information at that time)! With just a voice command “Okay Google” I have a hands-free reliable voice assistant giving accurate information at my vocal request! Some devices may very like the Moto X 2014 and the Nexus 6 with screen off Okay Google support. Click here for more Nexus 6 coverage done in house!
Material design, think of it as a multiple layer construction (card stacks with elegant movements on top another), shadow finger placements (shadow’s resulting from touch), and dedicated action points (Hamburger Menus and Action Circles)! App developers still need to come on board, but luckily a big number of them have made this transition!
Notification drawer and lock screen notifications both have been updated to give a elegant approach on what to see and swipe away when I’m done! Lock screen notifications is one in the same as the pull down notification drawer gives me updates of important information! System toggles allowing quick interactions with system detailed functionality like camera flash (use as a flashlight), volume and brightness controls, cast my device screen (screen mirroring), and more!
Features and Attention to Detail
After first boot and Wi-Fi connectivity I was greeted with Tap and go. This feature allows me to transfer my previous Android device apps, home screen, and user account information from one device to the next (password must be entered). To utilize this functionality, I needed to place my previous (NFC enabled) device back to back with my new (NFC enabled) device! When opening Gapps (Google applications) I was greeted with the all new Material design and new animations when clicking on apps! They slide up from the bottom and down when I click the home key! The new action keys have been replaced with Sony PlayStation esque soft keys. Triangle (Back), Circle (Home), and Square (Over view, the all new Multitasking)!
Performance and Battery life
Moving away from Dalvik, Art (Android runtime) is used by default allowing faster performance. In my testing on the Nexus 7 (2012) physical day to day performance is good plus app load times has increased! After 4 days of normal use (no games but YouTube and email) I ended with 6% battery life, leaving me with an estimated 6 hours left. When using the new battery saving feature I played on screen video playback continuously for 6 hours, note this feature will lag you’re device, but save battery life at the same time. My results are below.
Android 5.0 Lollipop is a hit and not a miss! Material design, features, and performance to me has been wonderful! Battery life to me was the same as usual from my dated device, the Nexus 7 (2012). Overall having a Nexus device with prompt updates (bringing new life), performance, new animations, and Google now at its prime! This has been a great experience but CM12 is my next step! Great job Google, I lasted 4 weeks on stock and still love it!
Future Development Within the Mod Community
Unlocked the bootloader, root access, custom recovery, and custom ROMs can be achieved by using the Android SDK or the simple WugFresh Root tool kit! Still awaiting Xposed Framework’s running on ART, a well known and trusted development community! If you are looking for a ETA only time will tell (Estimation is a hell of a drug)! Hit up Xposed Frameworks on Google plus here to get help and suggestions!
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