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Android P embraces the notch as it kills the Nexus

Published Mar 8th, 2018 7:45AM EST
Android P Release Date

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Google released the first Android P developer preview on Wednesday, sharing some details about the main features it planned for Android’s evolution. The release came as a surprise, as we expected Android P to be unveiled in mid-March, with the incoming Pi Day being a likely candidate for the event. Google didn’t go full nerd on this one.

However, now that Android P is here, we can officially conclude that Google is looking towards the future of mobile. Just as rumored, Android P will support notch designs going forward, making it easier for vendors to develop smartphones that look like the iPhone X. The notch is the future, and it just so happens that Android P “kills” the past. No Nexus phone currently in use out there will not receive the Android P update.

You see, back when Google unveiled its last Nexus phones, including the LG Nexus 5X and the Huawei 6P, it told buyers the phones will get guaranteed Android updates for two years, while security updates will be available for an extra year.

The last guaranteed Android update for the Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P was Oreo. In fact, we’re already past that September 2017 deadline when guaranteed updates ended for the two handsets, so thy shouldn’t even run Android 8.1 Oreo at this point.

There’s always a chance that Google changes its mind and pushes Android P to the two 2015 Nexus phones, but don’t bet on it. In its official Android P announcement, Google specifically listed only Pixel devices as compatible with the first developer preview. By the way, the Pixel and Pixel XL should not receive any major Android updates after P rolls out.

The Android P Developer Preview includes an updated SDK with system images for testing on the official Android Emulator and on Pixel, Pixel XL Pixel 2, and Pixel 2 XL devices.

That said, it’s likely that die-hard Android enthusiasts will find ways to port Android P to the Nexus 5X and Nexus P later down the road.

What is sure about the two phones is that monthly security updates are guaranteed through November 2018 for these last two remaining handsets.

The final version of Android P will be available for download on the Pixel devices mentioned above at some point in the third quarter of the year, likely in August.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.