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Android Marshmallow Rollout Started

| by Sergio De Simone Follow 14 Followers on Oct 06, 2015. Estimated reading time: 1 minute |

Google has announced they have started to roll out Android 6.0, codenamed Marshmallow, to Nexus devices. It is not yet entirely clear, though, when Marshmallow will become available on other devices.

Marshmallow SDK introduces new features relevant to developers, such as:

  • Extended runtime permissions, that allows users to manage app permissions at runtime. In previous versions of Android, apps got permissions from users at install time. In Android 6.0, developers shall make sure they request permissions at runtime by calling the new requestPermissions() method. Similarly, to check whether an app has already been granted a permission, the new checkSelfPermission() method is available.
  • Doze and App standby idle modes, that are aimed to improve battery usage. Doze is a new mode that a device enters when it is unplugged and left stationary. While in Doze mode, devices periodically wake up and perform pending operations for bried periods of time. Additionally, apps that are not actively used for a period of time enter standby mode, whereby the system disable network access and other kind of operations. Both modes require developers to adapt their apps and make sure they work correctly.
  • BoringSSL replaces OpenSSL.

Other changes that impact developers are the removal of the Apache HTTP client, which is replaced through HttpURLConnection; the removal of programmatic access to a device’s local hardware identifier; and more changes that you can read about in the above referenced document.

Marshmallow’s rollout will start immediately to Google flagship devices, including Nexus 5, Nexus 6, Nexus 7 (2013), Nexus 9, Nexus Player, and Android One. According to Ars Technica, it is not yet clear when it will be finally available on the rest of devices and your mileage may vary depending on the device manufacturer. Developers can install Marshmallow from official Google images, although it has been reported that doing so will eventually require a complete wipe out of the data, possibly due to the new permission system making apps crash.

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