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Android Q Doesn't Allow Apps To Toggle Wi-Fi On And Off: Here's Why That Matters

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A couple of days into the Android Q developer preview, users have discovered that it prevents apps from automatically turning Wi-Fi on and off.

This move is in large part due to privacy and security concerns, but while the motives behind it are good, it spells bad news for automation apps.

Android Q Sets App Limits

As spotted by a Reddit user, the developer page for Android Q contains this clear-cut excerpt:

"Apps running on Android Q cannot enable or disable Wi-Fi."

Android Police put it to the test and found it is indeed in effect already. As the tech news outlet explains, it can cripple apps that rely on automation via Android's APIs, such as Tasker and IFTTT.

Speaking of which, the person behind Tasker João Dias said that the change will affect the app "in a big way."

Of course, this also applies to the Google Home app. As a solution, the Mountain View company encourages developers to use the new settings panel prompt to allow users to toggle Wi-Fi on and off on their own without the need to leave the app. However, this won't work for the aforementioned automation apps since automating things like this is among what they're supposed to do.

Android Q is still in beta, though, so there's a chance that this change could get scrapped in the end. On top of that, apps could get special exceptions too, which Tasker managed to get in November 2018 (via XDA-Developers).

Other Android Q Changes

The Android Q beta hasn't been out that long yet. It just rolled out on March 13, after all. Still, a lot of people have already uncovered plenty of interesting and welcome changes.

For the most part, the update is bringing in various optimizations and more controls over privacy and location and the like, but there are some big ones that are worth noting: "chat head" notification bubbles and gestures.

For the uninitiated, Chat Heads is a feature that's arguably been popularized by Facebook Messenger. Now Android Q could turn all notifications into bubbles, similar to what Facebook did with Messenger notifications.

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