Earlier this month, when Google Pixel smartphones were announced, the word was set out for the Android 7.1 Developer Preview program. And the day has already come, sooner than expected. Google has already made the official announcement at Android Developers Blog.

As always, the preview version of the upcoming Android release is being brought to the developers and other power users for early-testing and adaptation. This will not only help the users get a glimpse of what is about to come, but would also help the app developers significantly, to target the updated API and be ready with their apps, to support the latest operating system.

Launcher shortcuts and system info on Android 7.1 Dev Preview

This Dev Preview doesn’t bring the major Pixel goodies, in case you were expecting them. Those are still limited to the Pixel itself. Other than that, Google has highlighted three major changes:

  • The current preview is staged as BETA and aims at ruling out the device-specific issues. For now, the preview is only limited to the Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X, and Pixel C. Other supported devices shall join the list with the second preview, next month.
  • The APIs are now updated to level 25. So app developers will now be able to download the latest API platform and extend their app support to Android 7.1.
  • App developer can publish their apps with updated APIs to the Play Store, whenever they are ready with it. So, there would be no need to wait until the final release.

These changes are exclusively aiming to help the app developers. Other than the additions outlined above, with Android 7.1 Developer Preview has brought back the infamous launcher shortcuts feature and round icons. We will soon do a detailed review of all the new changes that have accompanied. Know that there are a lot of other visual changes. And they are exciting!

Install Android 7.1 Developer Preview

Installing the developer preview on your supported device follows the same procedure as before. You can either join the Android Beta Program (View tutorial), which will help you update from the current stable installation through an Over-The-Air update.

The other/manual method is by flashing full system images using fastboot commands. This will also require your device to have an unlocked bootloader. You can download Android 7.1 Developer Preview images from here. If you’re unaware of the instructions, click the link below.

How to Flash Factory Image on Nexus

Note: By installing this Dev Preview, your device will be wiped off completely. So make sure that you have taken a full backup.

We are definitely loving the way Google is being concerned about its users and their needs. Who doesn’t love an early taste of the sweet new update that is about to arrive. Share your views with us through the comments. Have you noted something extraordinary about the preview that we might have missed? Kindly let us know.

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Dhananjay (DJ) is an Android devotee and a Tech Blogger by profession. He is a keen undergraduate, seeking and working hard on his ambitions to achieve something distinctive in his life. He prefers interacting with his readers in the most reproaching manner possible and his desires here are not just to reach out the tech figures, but also attract those those non-interested minds to our Android universe. He proudly owns Nexus 6P, Nexus 5, OnePlus One and a Nexus 4.