Support and Release Notes

Two primary support channels are available to you when developing and testing with the Android N Developer Preview: Please file bugs at https://developer.android.com/preview/bug for device-specific, system, and Google App bugs. For issues in other apps, please contact the developer directly.

To discuss issues or ideas with other developers working with Android N, join the Developer Preview Google+ community.

Developer Preview 2

Date: April 2016
Builds: NPC91K, NPC91O
Emulator support: x86 & ARM (32/64-bit)
Google Play services: 8.4

New in DP2

  • Platform support for Vulkan, a new 3D rendering API that provides explicit, low-overhead GPU (Graphics Processor Unit) control and offers improved performance for draw-call heavy applications. For details, see the documentation.
  • New people emoji with support for skin tones, and new Unicode 9 glyphs. Skin tone and new emoji will not show up until keyboards build support for them in the palette. Apps should not need to take any action to take advantage of these new emoji, unless the apps use a non-system font. IME developers need to incorporate support for the new emoji.
  • Launcher Shortcuts API: Apps can use ShortcutManager to send shortcuts to starting points within themselves to the launcher.
  • Multi-Window: You can now specify a separate minimum height and minimum width for an activity. In addition, several API names have been slightly changed.

Fixes for issues reported by developers

A number of issues reported by developers have been fixed, including:

  • Can’t connect to hidden SSID or non-broadcast Wi-Fi. (bug 203116)
  • Microphone mute state persists across activities. (bug 205922)
  • Changing multi-window focus pauses YouTube. (bug 203424)
  • Direct Reply may close open activity. (bug 204411)
  • Various stability fixes.

General advisories

This Developer Preview release is for app developers only and is designed for use in compatibility testing and early development only. Please be aware of these general notes about the release:

  • The development tool components and support libraries have been updated for the DP2 release. Make sure to update your preview development environment before developing for DP2. For instructions on setting up your development environment, see Set Up the Preview.
  • This release has various stability and performance issues on all devices that make it not suitable for daily use on phone or tablet, especially for non-developers.
  • Battery life and performance have not yet been optimized with this release:
    • System and app performance is known to be periodically slow / janky, and devices may become occasionally unresponsive. These problems may become more acute with prolonged use.
    • Battery life may be regressed in this release for screen-on and screen-off use cases.
  • Some apps may not function normally on Developer Preview 2. This includes Google’s apps as well as other apps.
  • This early build is not Compatibility Test Suite (CTS) approved. Apps that depend on CTS approved builds won’t work (Android Pay for example).
  • This preview release supports the following devices: Nexus 5X, Nexus 6, Nexus 6P, Nexus 9, and Pixel C, as well as General Mobile 4G (Android One). Support for Nexus Player is coming soon.
  • TestDPC has been updated to handle API changes between DP1 and DP2.

Known Issues

Performance and battery

  • System and app performance is known to be periodically slow / janky, and device may become occasionally unresponsive. These problems may become more acute with prolonged use.

Google accounts

  • In some circumstances, there can be issues with AccountManagerService that prevent logging in to Google accounts

System update

  • Device may restart immediately after updating to DP2.

Accessibility

  • Problem with listening to text-to-speech (TTS) output when pitch is set near maximum level.

Bluetooth

  • Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) GATT characteristics are using the wrong write type and will not be sent to a remote device. Thus, for example, some fitness devices will not work.

Setup wizard

  • The option to restore data on a new device (or newly reset device) from "Your Google Account" is not actionable in the setup wizard. You must restore data from an existing device by selecting "another Android device" in the setup wizard, or else set it up as a new device.

OEM unlock

  • On some devices, Enable OEM unlock is grayed out in "Developer Options" while running DP2.
    Workaround: Opt in to the Android Beta Program (if you are not already opted in) by visiting www.google.com/android/beta. Then, opt out and accept the downgrade OTA. Opting out causes the device to downgrade to Android 6.0. You should now be able to choose Enable OEM unlock in "Developer Options". Personal data is erased when you downgrade the device; however, unlocking the bootloader would have erased this data anyway.

Android for Work

  • Work Security Challenge
    • After migration to N, or after the user creates work profiles, work profiles can't create keys in the keystore until the user changes their pattern, PIN, or password, or sets up a Work Challenge.
    • In Direct boot mode, applying the passcode restrictions to the device causes the work profile to be unlocked, even though the device is locked. This makes the work profile accessible even though it should be protected by the device lock screen.
  • Always On VPN
    • If Always On VPN mode is turned on, but VPN is not available, apps connect over the ordinary network. Apps should be offline if they have no VPN connection available.
    • When Always On mode is on, a VPN connection is not established after a device reboots into Direct boot mode, even after the user unlocks the secure lock screen.
  • Suspend Packages
    • Device admins can suspend critical system packages, which may lead to unexpected behavior, such as placing calls despite the "Telephone disabled" dialog being displayed.
  • Other
    • The Settings app crashes on launch if DISALLOW_MOUNT_PHYSICAL_MEDIA is set to true when the user inserts physical media such as an SD card.
    • The first check-in in a Work Profile takes several minutes to complete.

Vulkan

  • Nexus 5X/6P
    • Gaps between binding numbers and non-zero as the first binding number causes vkCreateGraphicsPipeline() to fail.
    • Vulkan exhibits incorrect sampling behavior on projected texture coordinates.
    • in the multithreadCmdBuffer sample, vkCmdClearColorImage() crashes when running with the N-DP2 driver.
    • Return values from vkGetPhysicalDeviceFormatProperties() do not set a value for VkFormatProperties::linearTilingFeatures, which takes a value of 0 as a result.
    • Vulkan floating point frame buffer attachments are not handled correctly.
  • Nexus Player
    • SPIR-V shaders may trigger driver asserts.
    • Some pipeline configurations may cause vkCreateGraphicsPipeline() to crash.

Device-specific issues

Android One
Data connection fails when device is switched from slot 1 to slot 2 SIM.
Pixel C
Unable to toggle Voice Search "Always On" option.
Nexus 6
Camera pictures in portrait orientation are corrupted, except for HDR+ photos.
Nexus Player
Playback of Netflix HD content may fail on Nexus Player.
Any application that relies on dynamic video resolution changes may fail on Nexus Player.
Any application that use the VP9 video codec may fail on Nexus Player.

Developer Preview 1

Date: March 2016
Builds: NPC56P, NPC56R, updated: NPC56W, NPC56X
Emulator support: x86 & ARM (32/64-bit)
Google Play services: 8.4

General advisories

This Developer Preview release is for app developers only and is designed for use in compatibility testing and early development only. Please be aware of these general notes about the release:

  • This release has various stability and performance issues on all devices that make it not suitable for daily use on phone or tablet, especially for non-developers.
  • System and app performance is known to be periodically slow / janky, and device may become occasionally unresponsive. These problems may become more acute with prolonged use.
  • Battery life may be regressed in this release for screen-on and screen-off use cases.
  • Some apps may not function normally on Developer Preview 1. This includes Google’s apps as well as other apps.
  • This early build is not Compatibility Test Suite (CTS) approved. Apps that depend on CTS approved builds (Android Pay for example) won’t work.
  • This preview release supports the following devices: Nexus 5X, Nexus 6, Nexus 6P, Nexus 9, Nexus Player, and Pixel C, as well as General Mobile 4G (Android One).

Platform Issues

Performance and battery

  • System and app performance is known to be periodically slow / janky, and device may become occasionally unresponsive. These problems may become more acute with prolonged use.
  • Battery life may be regressed in this release for screen-on and screen-off use cases.

Dialer

  • Dialer app does not support Direct boot. This will be addressed later in N Developer Preview.
  • Voicemail playback does not work.

Microphone

  • The system may incorrect persists the microphone mute state across apps and reboots. If you mute the microphone in an app and the state is persisted, open any app that has microphone mute controls and unmute the microphone.

System UI

  • Some new or modified strings in the system UI are not translated to all languages.
  • Overview UI is still in development, and subject to change. For example, we intend to remove the timer that appears when the user switches between apps.
  • Settings controls and toggles may be slow or appear to be unresponsive.
  • Visual design of notifications is subject to change.
  • In the Gmail app, direct archiving of emails included in a notification bundle does not work properly.

Android for Work

  • Work Security Challenge
    • After migration to N, or after the user creates work profiles, work profiles can't create keys in the keystore until the user changes their pattern, PIN, or password, or sets up a Work Challenge.
    • In Direct boot mode, applying the passcode restrictions to the device causes the work profile to be unlocked, even though the device is locked. This makes the work profile accessible even though it should be protected by the device lock screen.
    • When the user enters a wrong password and pin, the system does not display any informational message; instead, it only clears the input field. This issue does not affect pattern or fingerprint input.
    • On a tablet, the background displayed with the work challenge is disproportionately small.
    • The version of Google Apps Device Policy that is bundled with N Developer Preview does not yet support the Work Profile Security Challenge feature. Developers should instead use TestDPC to test this feature.
  • Always On VPN
    • If Always On VPN mode is turned on, but VPN is not available, apps not specified as exceptions to the Always On policy connect over the ordinary network. Unless specified as exceptions to Always On VPN policy, apps should be offline if they have no VPN connection available.
      • When Always On mode is on, a VPN connection is not established after a device reboots into Direct boot mode, even after the user unlocks the secure lock screen.
  • Improved Contacts
    • Bluetooth PBAP/MAP devices do not display Caller ID for work contacts. The next release of Preview resolves this issue.
  • Work Mode
    • The Google Now Launcher does not display whether Work Mode is on or off. The Launcher also does not show app suspension state.
    • After the user turns Work Mode off and on, the system no longer shows Work profile app widgets, such as Calendar.
  • Suspend Packages
  • Device admins can suspend critical system packages, which may lead to unexpected behavior, such as placing calls despite the Telephone disabled dialog’s being displayed.
  • Other
    • The Settings app crashes on launch if DISALLOW_MOUNT_PHYSICAL_MEDIA is set to true when the user inserts physical media such as an SD card.
    • The DPM.setPackagesSuspended state does not persist when the user uninstalls and then reinstalls an app. Either the app should remain suspended after uninstall/reinstall, or suspended apps should not be uninstallable
    • The first check-in in a Work Profile takes several minutes to complete. This may cause the device to take longer than normal to be visible in the Play EMM API.
    • Notifications from Work Profile apps are not visible to notification listeners installed in the personal profile. As a result, the system does not display Notifications as expected.

Keyboard

  • Bluetooth pairing between keyboards and Android devices may be unstable.

Video

  • Video playback may lag and show interruptions.

Wi-Fi

  • Wi-Fi has undergone some refactoring which may change API corner case behavior. Specifically, applications which attempt to connect to specific networks, or attempt to reconnect to networks should retest.
  • The legacy DHCP client has been removed from the platform. The only DHCP client that the platform supports is the DHCP client introduced in M.

Direct boot

  • NFC doesn't function until first unlock.
    • When a phone with Bluetooth enabled is restarted, Bluetooth does not turn on automatically. You must manually re-enable Bluetooth.
    • Under some circumstances, the default ringtone may not sound for phone calls and messages. This behavior is fixed in the next N Preview release, with one exception (and workaround):
    • On a device that is not freshly wiped--one that has been booted at least once since being set to direct boot mode--the default notification ringtone does not sound. The user can work around this issue by manually selecting a ringtone from Settings.
    • Direct boot is not enabled by default on devices running an N Developer Preview build. To enable direct boot for testing and development, go to Developer Options and tap Convert to File Encryption. In this dev preview, this requires a factory reset to repartition and reformat your device for File-based Encryption.

Picture-in-picture for Android TV

  • The PIP integration in the Recents UI is not finalized, and is subject to change.
    • The animation of the PIP window is not smooth. Future releases of the Preview will improve this.
  • Future releases of the Preview will improve upon the visual design and layout alignment of PIP.

Bug reports

  • Bug reports do not always complete successfully (as a workaround, sometimes they can still be accessed through the bug report document provider in internal storage).

Split-screen Multi-window

  • Apps may experience crashes and unexpected UI behavior when put into split-screen mode. These are app issues that must be fixed by the app developer.
  • When an app targets a version of the Android platform earlier than N, the App may not work with split-screen toast may appear multiple times.
  • Long-pressing the Overview button while using an app with a fixed orientation may produce unexpected app behavior.
  • Apps may flicker while resizing.
  • Animations are not yet final.

Input method

  • Google Keyboard unexpectedly falls back to the generic Google keyboard when Use system language, but Google Keyboard doesn’t support any of the languages selected in the system-language preferences. It should fall back to American English.

    You can work around this problem by adding at least one language that Google Keyboard supports.

Accessibility

  • TalkBack exhibits issues with features including Notifications, Quick Settings Tiles and Multi-window display that may cause system crashing or lack of spoken feedback from TalkBack. Future releases of the preview will address these issues.

Device-Specific Notes and Issues

Nexus Player

  • Video playback, app compatibility and stability issues are expected on Nexus Player in this release of the Preview.

Pixel C

  • Multi-window resizing may cause crashing.

Nexus 9

  • Nexus 9 devices may not start after receiving an over-the-air (OTA) update via the Android Beta Program. To recover from this issue, you can try to manually install the OTA image. For more information, see Applying a Device OTA Image.