My Android 4.2 ThoughtsPositives
* Text is noticeably sharper across native UI elements. I think there's still further progress to me made in this area, but the improvements here are a great step forward.
* The new multitasking animations are very slick.
* Multiple user support on tablets is a great feature.
* Photospheres are fantastic, and could be a real killer feature going forward.
* The Swype-style keyboard works really well.
* The Gallery app has been tightened up nicely.
* I'm excited to see what comes of the multiple-screen and Miracast features going forward.
* Some welcome new security features.
* The refined clock widget looks great.Shrug
* Daydreams. They work just fine, but I do find it very strange that they don't function out of the box, and you must both enable and configure them. Given this, I can't imagine many muggles will ever see them. I'm sure this will evolve into a cool feature for the fridges of tomorrow, but I don't envisage using it much currently.Negatives
* I really don't like the lock screen widgets. Some of my major gripes: the camera shortcut is now removed from the lock screen; the UX flow for adding widgets is vastly different compared to on the launcher; the widget 'pages' now have rounded corners. Finally, I can't shake the feeling that if someone is willing to have their inbox/calendar available insecurely on a lock screen widget, why wouldn't they just disable the lock screen entirely and get to their home screen faster?
* The notification preferences look good, but usability wise they are a bit of a mess: clicking my profile image does nothing useful unless I'm on a tablet with multiple users; Airplane mode is an actionable toggle; Brightness spawns overlayed UI; and the rest of the items are just shortcuts to pages in the Settings. I'd have preferred each option on this shade be a toggle. As it stands, I don't see much point in this notification shade.
* The camera app changes in every release, but it's still yet to reach the point where it is great IMO.
* Creating good photospheres can be a really finicky and slow exercise.
* Why this policy of linking the Gmail app and OS releases rather than releasing the updated Gmail app via the Play Store? Swipe-to-archive requires some new 4.2 specific system API? Puh-lease. I can understand the need for a separate Gmail app for 2.x users, but surely all versions of Android 4.0 (arguable 3.0) and above should be using the same version of Gmail. Google advise developers to take this course of action with their apps, and they should be setting an example here.
* The Clock app received some long overdue love, but I don't much fancy its UI. It feels a bit like its trying a touch too hard to be stylish at the expense of usability to me. Certainly, alarms should have more prominence IMO.
* I've definitely experienced quite a few stability issues than under 4.1. The Gallery app in particular seems to FC very often when loading a photosphere.
* Sometimes I find pressing the power button does not wake the screen as quickly as it did previously. This delay is annoying, because I often find myself pressing the button again thinking the button press hasn't registered, only to find the screen powering on and then off again.
* It is disappointing that this is seemingly the end of the line for my much beloved Nexus S, but I do appreciate support for it had to end at some point.
* I can't shake the feeling that something about Android 4.2 just feels a little rushed. Also, it does not feel like a unanimous step forward, as Android releases always have previously for me.
cc/ +Adam Koch
, +Adam Powell
, +Dan Morrill
, +Dianne Hackborn
, +Kirill Grouchnikov
, +Matias Duarte
, +Nick Butcher
, +Rich Hyndman
, +Roman Nurik
, +Romain Guy
, +Reto Meier