With Android Pie, Google introduced gesture navigation feature where you get a pill-shaped button at the bottom, allowing you to navigate through the UI. Sure, gestures are a good way to interact, but it didn’t actually solve the purpose of offering full-screen real-estate. Google is fixing that with its upcoming Android Q OS. The software giant has already released two beta versions, and now, at I/O 2019, it has released the third beta, which comes with a bunch of new features.
The Android Q Beta 3 brings a host of changes, which includes system-wide dark theme, along with first-party Google apps support. Updates to privacy and security, live captions for videos, focus mode and parental controls, and improved notifications are other features. Google has also improved the navigation gestures, bringing it closer to what we’ve seen on the iPhone X and iPhone XS-series.
The new gestures are available as a part of Android Q Beta 3 on all the Pixel smartphones. Additionally, the beta update is also available for 15 non-pixel phones, which includes the Essential PH-1, Realme 3 Pro, OnePlus 6T, and Huawei Mate 20 Pro among others. If you own any of these devices and have installed the beta update, follow the below mentioned steps to activate new gestures.
Watch: Android Q First Look
How to activate Android Q Beta’s new gestures
The activation process is pretty simple. Head over to Settings -> System -> Gestures -> System Navigation. Here, you will see three options Fully gestural navigation, 2-button navigation and the traditional 3-button navigation with “back, home and task switcher” buttons.
Once activated, using it is very simple. You’ll see a thin white bar at the bottom of the screen. Swipe up on the bar to go to home screen, swipe up and drag for multi-tasking view, swipe across to switch between apps, whereas swiping half way up and hold to switch apps.
I’ve used the gesture on the Android Q beta 2, and now switching to Android Q beta 3, you can clearly tell the difference. It’s much faster and intuitive. But, there are still some refinements one needs to do, and I believe those could make way to the final version.