Google's latest Android 6.0 Marshmallow is all set to start rolling out next week, bringing a slew of neat features and improvements on all fronts.
While the latest version of Android has a lot more to offer, here are the top 10 features that users will likely appreciate most.
1. Doze Battery Optimization
Android 6.0 Marshmallow should deliver significantly superior battery optimization compared to Lollipop, as it has a neat new feature called Doze. Sure, every new OS version comes with claims of improved battery life, but Doze may actually pull it off.
This feature uses a combination of software tweaks and hardware sensors to determine when devices have been idle for a while, disabling some processes running in the background or some power-draining features while they're not in use. Simply put, Doze keeps an eye on how you use your device and adjusts the app activity based on usage. No need to keep everything running at 3AM if you've been sound asleep for hours and haven't used your phone, right?
Users will still receive notifications, but Doze will considerably stretch out battery life by adjusting app activity while the phone or tablet is not in use. Marshmallow will not completely close apps — it will just pause them so they consume less battery. You may not get the very latest content as soon as you open those apps, but it sounds like a good trade-off for longer battery life.
2. Fingerprint Support
Equipping smartphones with fingerprint scanners is a growing trend. More devices are expected to join the party soon, so the addition of fingerprint support to Android 6.0 Marshmallow makes sense.
With dedicated fingerprint support baked into Android, device makers no longer have to code everything on their own to make sure their fingerprint sensor works properly with the OS. With fingerprint sensors, users can easily unlock their device in a secure manner, make payments or log into various services or applications — making everything safer and more convenient.
3. USB Type-C
USB Type-C is the latest connector making waves in the tech industry and is soon expected to grace most phones, tablets and laptops. USB-C for short, this connector is a reversible USB format that allows for fast data transfers between devices.
Android 6.0 Marshmallow now adds support for USB Type-C, making it easier for the Android hardware makers to launch their future devices with this standard. With more devices using USB-C, trying to plug in a microUSB the wrong way could soon be a thing of the past.
4. Google Now on Tap
Google Now already plays a great role in Android and it gets even better in Android 6.0 Marshmallow. With Google Now on Tap, the assistant gets information from third-party apps as well, adding it to the pool of data Google Now leverages to deliver the most relevant information.
With Android 6.0 Marshmallow, users can hold the home button while in an app and Google Now will analyze it on the spot. For instance, if a friend sends you a text message telling you about a restaurant, holding the home button while in the message app will prompt Google Now on Tap to pull up a map with the restaurant, show you its working hours, reviews and other such useful info.
5. Case-By-Case App Permissions
Android 6.0 Marshmallow also brings a new app permission structure that borrows a page from Apple's iOS playbook, while adding its own improvements. So far, app permissions on Android have been an all-or-nothing affair, but with Marshmallow, users will be able to choose which permissions they want to grant to each individual app. You can install a social app, for instance, and choose to deny it access to your location information or to your device's camera.
There are several other neat features Android 6.0 Marshmallow brings to the table, including Android Pay, improved productivity, better connectivity, app backup and restore, Android for Work and many more. Android 6.0 Marshmallow will start rolling out next week as an update for Nexus devices, after which it will gradually start to hit other Android devices from various OEMs.