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Android 5.0 L Update for Nexus 4, Nexus 5, Nexus 7, and Nexus 10: What You Need to Know

The folks at Google will release the Android 5.0 L update for Nexus 4, Nexus 5, Nexus 7, Nexus 10, and other supported devices later this year, so we thought you should remind you of some of the features and changes that are integrated in the new Android version.

The biggest change introduced by the Android 5.0 L update for Nexus 4, Nexus 5, Nexus 7, and Nexus 10 is probably the new Material Design which is nothing but colorful and dynamic. Google said they are focusing on shadows and 3D effects to make the Android 5.0 L interface more intuitive and that’s exactly what they did. Even the Google Keyboard in Android 5.0 L has been changed to fit in with the new Material Design philosophy.

You should also notice that Google has changed the way the status bar looks and works. While being transparent in the home and lock screens, the Android 5.0 L status bar changes color to match the action bar of the app that is displayed on the screen. Of course, it’s up to developers to change the way the status bar looks like while their apps are being run.

The Android 5.0 L update for Nexus 4, Nexus 5, Nexus 7, and Nexus 10 will also bring a new multitasking interface. The running processes are now being displayed on the screen as a stack of cards, in a way similar to how the Chrome tabs look like in the Android version of the browser. Furthermore, apps can now have more than one card displayed in the multitasking.

The lock screen and the notifications have also been redesigned in Android 5.0 L. You will now be able to interact with your notifications right from the lock screen, while the notification bar has received a new look. Even the Quick Settings area has been changed. Now it lives one swipe down away from the notification bar. The Quick Settings button is also gone, so you will need to swipe down once to bring up the notifications bar, then swipe once more for Quick Settings. Do Not Disturb Mode is also a thing in Android 5.0 L, while Auto Brightness has been ditched for “Adaptive Brightness.”

Update: A new report coming from people who went deep into Android L Developer Preview code indicates that Google is planning to allow users to change the Quick Settings toggles in the final version of the release.

The Android 5.0 L update for Nexus 4, Nexus 5, Nexus 7, and Nexus 10 also arrives with USB audio-out, search support within the Settings menu, rotation lock shortcut in Quick Settings, while the battery menu and lock screen show how long it will take to charge your battery, and more.

The new Android iteration also replaces the obsolete Dalvik runtime with ART, which brings support for 64-bit processor and should considerably improve system speeds. Another good news is that the battery life is expected to grow more than 30% in Android 5.0 L.

Google hasn’t revealed the official name of the new Android version, but given the plethora of changes introduced by the new update it will most likely be labeled as Android 5.0. In regards of the dessert name chosen for the new Android iteration, most reports indicate it will be “Lollipop.”

There’s no official confirmation about the public release of Android L, but Google’s previous launches seem to indicate we will be able to install the final version of the OS on our devices mid-fall. Google was usually announcing new Android releases two times a year: in the summer and in the fall. Since the summer only brought us a preview of Android L, we are expecting the final version to see the light of day sometime in October.

As usual, Android 5.0 L will debut synchronized with a new Nexus device. Even though it was rumored that Google plans to kill the Nexus program, it seems that the Nexus brand is here to stay. Sources in the industry talk about an 8.9-inch Nexus 8 tablet known internally as HTC Volantis. If the reports are to be believed it will pack an 8.9-inch screen with 4:3 aspect ratio, 64-bit Nvidia Tegra K1 chipset, 3 GB of RAM, 8 MP primary cam with OIS, 3 MP secondary cam, and “aluminium zero-gap” construction.

Of course, the Nexus smartphones and tablets will be the first to receive the Android 5.0 L update, soon followed by the members of the Google Play Experience tribe. If Motorola keep their good habit, their Moto X and Moto G (and probably Moto X+1, too) will be among the first OEM devices to receive the Android 5.0 L update. HTC promised to release Android L for One M7 and Oe M8 within 90 days after they receive the final version from Google, while other big OEMs like Samsung, LG, or Sony might release the new update late 2014 or early 2015.