What you need to know

  • A Reddit user in the soak test has given us a sneak peek at a new setting and animation in Android Q Beta 5.
  • The new setting pertains to the back gesture sensitivity and the new animation involves the launching of Google Assistant.
  • It is still unknown when Google will start rolling out Android Q Beta 5.

Android appears to be struggling with just how it wants you to actually navigate your phone. When gestures first launched in Pie, many were quick to dismiss them as a poor imitation of gestures from iOS.

With the release of Android Q Beta 3 back in May, Google updated the navigation gestures to essentially be a direct copy of those from iOS. Since the new gestures were introduced, they have continued to evolve during the beta test.

Now, thanks to Reddit user Charizarlslie who was part of a soak test for Android Q Beta 5, we're hearing of some changes coming ahead of the release of the next beta. One of the improvements includes a sensitivity option for the back gesture. This is one of the key areas of the new gesture system which has been causing issues for users.

You see, the new back navigation gesture was changed to allow a user to swipe from either the right or left edge in Android Q. The problem with that, is that several apps (including the Play Store and Gmail) use a swipe from the left edge to open the hamburger menu which conflicts with the back gesture.

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In order to address this, Google has introduced a new back sensitivity option along with a "peeking" option. The new back sensitivity and long pressing to activate the hamburger menu before swiping should help clean up some of the mess that gestures on Android have become.

Another improvement is for the gesture to activate Google Assistant. Android Q Beta 5 appears to include animated curved lines in both of the bottom corners to indicate where you should swipe up from to summon Assistant. In the video, you can even see there is a colorful little animation that runs along the bottom edge once the gesture is performed.

One final change pertains to the UI of the rotate button. Previously, it overlapped with the mini navigation bar, but now it has been shifted upwards and enlarged. This should make it easier to press while also keeping it out of your way when navigating with gestures.

There is still no word on when Android Q Beta 5 will start rolling out, but at least we have a glimpse into some of the great changes coming our way. Let's hope Google pushes the button soon so we can all start trying out these new changes.

Android Q: Everything you need to know!