Android 12 Is Officially Available: How to Get It (If You Can)

Android 12 Is Officially Available: How to Get It (If You Can)
Contributor: Sam Rutherford

Google recently made Android 12 available to developers and device makers, but now Google is rolling it out to the rest of us—that is, if you own a Pixel 3 or newer.

Android 12 brings a slew of updates, including a new interface and a design language called Material You. There are also revamped widgets and a number of new security features, including little notifications that let you know when apps are accessing components like your phone’s camera or mic.

Google is no longer supporting the original Pixel and Pixel 2 (RIP), so the Pixel 3 and up will also be the first phones to get Google’s dynamic colour experience in Material You, which uses colour extraction algorithms based on your phone’s wallpaper (both default Android wallpapers or wallpapers you’ve added yourself) to create matching accent colours that will be automatically applied to the rest of your Pixel’s interface and menus.

android 12
Here’s a look at the dynamic colour experience in Material You on Android 12. Note how the phone picked up the hints of green from the wallpaper and applied it to other elements of the phone’s UI. (Image: Sam Rutherford)

Other improvements in Android 12 include a new extra dim brightness setting so you can more comfortably check your phone at night, support for scrolling screenshots (finally!), and the ability to start playing new games from the Play Store before they are even fully downloaded.

On the privacy side of things, Android 12 also makes it easier to see which apps are accessing your location data, with a new option that lets people choose to provide a precise location, or a more general approximate location in case you’re worried about sharing too much identifying information.

And for those considering getting a new Pixel 6, Google added a new data transfer feature that allows you to easily send things like apps, media, and messages from an old Android device or iPhone over Wi-Fi.

Android 12 for the Pixel 3 and up should be rolling out today. To get the update search for System Update in your Pixel’s Settings menu, and hit the button that says Download and install (or Check for updates if the download button isn’t already available).

So when can you get Android 12 on a non-Pixel device? Google says the upgrade will hit Samsung Galaxy, OnePlus, Oppo, Realme, Vivo, and Xiaomi phones sometime later this year.

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