Android 6 Marshmallow Update – Key Features
Now On Tap
Previously, Android KitKat featured ‘Google Now’ which offered time and context-sensitive notifications, information and reminders. Marshmallow has now taken this to a whole new level with ‘Google Now On Tap’, which short-cuts the need to search for additional contextual information and delivers it at any turn. To activate, you simply need to hold down the home button and Now On Tap will read the content of the screen on your phone, whether you’re in Google or using a third-party app, and will deliver information that might be relevant to keywords on your screen. For example, Google Search results about people, places or things mentioned in an article you’re reading or app suggestions that are relevant to what Now On Tap has picked up, such as Maps, Calendar or Trip Advisor for a restaurant named in a text message.
Further integration with Google offers Voice API and Assist API that allows third-party apps to access Google’s voice command functionally in ways they couldn’t previously.
Marshmallow aims to optimise your battery life with two new features Doze and App Standby. Doze automatically puts your device into a sleep state when it’s at rest, for example on your bedside table, ensuring your alarm will still go off in the morning even if you forgot to plug in the night before. While App Standby limits the impact of apps you rarely use so that your charge lasts longer.
Where other devices lose an average of 15-20% of battery life overnight, Marshmallow can take that down to 3-5%, taking your standby time to nearly 2 weeks in the process
Marshmallow is also future-proofed for USB Type-C Charging, allowing for much faster charging than conventianal cables, and likely to be the most commonly used connection for the next few years. With full support built in, you can take advantage of Type-C Charging as long as your smartphone has the connection.
Control and Security
Marshmallow has introduced simplified security with your fingerprint, allowing you to unlock your phone and sign into the Play Store and apps without the need for passwords. Better yet, Android Pay has been introduced so you can take advantage of a touch-less payment system – however you will need to ensure your device is NFC-equipped. Marshmallow also offers greater control of app access with permissions your way, allowing you to define what you want to share and when, and letting you turn off permissions at any time too.