Android 8.1 Oreo Preview is Now Available

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Bytes: The first maintenance release of Android Oreo, was making its way to Pixel and Nexus devices as a developer preview in the coming weeks. And indeed, just 8 days after the initial confirmation, the first system images for the 8.1.0 developer preview have now dropped for the Google Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL, Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P. While this update might seem like a really modest improvement over the first Android 8.0 release, there is actually way more than meets the eye, as the update packs some major fixes and improvements as well as some other small tidbits and changes that should, all in all, improve the overall user experience in various ways. Today, we’re doing a small rundown on some of what the Android 8.1 Developer Preview 1 brings to the table.

It introduces a small, but welcome, change to how notifications work. With the update, apps are limited to one notification alert sound per second. Alerts that exceed that rate will not be queued and will become lost.

The rest of the changes are under the hood, with features including apps being able to manage wallpaper colors, apps alerting Google to when a WebView instance sends folks to a website that sets off Safe Browsing, developers better able to target their apps for low-RAM devices, and a few other adjustments.

If you’re up to the task of trying out unfinished software, factory images are now available for the Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, Pixel C, Google Pixel, Google Pixel XL, Google Pixel 2, and Google Pixel 2 XL. Alternatively, you can wait for the OTA to hit your device if you are already enrolled in the Android Beta Program.

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