This article is part of our Android Q Feature Spotlights series.

Previous ArticleShow AllNext Article

Google has released the latest version of its mobile OS, Android 10, but what's new? Your eagle-eyed Android Police editors (with your help) have been combing through the latest version for months since the earliest Android Q betas looking for new features, changes, improvements, and even setbacks. We've enumerated everything we've found here, together with a brief description of what it is or does. So, let's take a look at Android 10.

As always, we have to thank our tipsters (❤️) for our feature-level coverage. Without all of you, our job would be much harder, and we couldn't do this without you.

This may be the final update to our Android 10 feature list. I've spent the last several days reviewing every change listed below to determine what did and didn't make the cut, and there were even a few new tweaks in the "final" release. While I expect there are still a few minor stragglers left to be found, the list below should now be generally accurate to the stable Android 10 release.

I've also reorganized a few things below to better sort individual features (and make the lives of my fellow bloggers using it for reference a bit easier). The lists in each heading were generally chronological before, but now they're more aggressively organized into sub-categories like "Fully Gestural Navigation" and "Notifications" that make it easier to see everything related to a given subject at a glance.

You'll also find two new sections at the end of this list, "Known issues" and "Missing features," which enumerate the current known bugs and details which were spotted, announced, or shown off previously, but didn't make it into the Android 10 stable release for some reason. Google has promised a "post-release update" for some features later, so we may see a significant update land later with some of these omitted details — perhaps with the Pixel 4.

To see what's new since the last update, scroll to the "What's new" section immediately below this update. The new details have also been merged into the full and chunky master list of Android Q features further down.

We have some new changes that snuck into the final release, plus a few other details worth noting, like expected features that are still missing. Unfortunately, due to most of us here at AP updating our devices to the final release, we aren't able to peg down precisely when some of these features landed (in prior betas vs. final stable release).

  • New Android logo in boot screen: As part of the recent rebranding effort, Pixels running Android 10 picked up a new logo for Android on the boot screen.
  • "Double-tap to check phone" and "Lift to check phone" show the full lock screen instead of the Ambient Display, as they did on Android 9 Pie.
  • Play Store slices appearing in Settings: Shortcuts to some actions in the Play Store are appearing (following a prompt) in the Settings app on Android 10.
  • The pull-down notification gesture spotted in the Pixel launcher on a leaked beta didn't make the final cut in the Android 10 stable release.
  • More "Pixel Themes" details spotted, even though it still isn't live in Android 10's release: we knew that more extensive customization options were coming in Android 10. They didn't debut with the final release, so Google may be holding them back for the Pixel 4's launch, but some more details regarding these customization options including specific themes have been dug out.
  • Six more emoji than we bargained for: Android 10 comes with 236 new emoji, not 230 as previously expected, plus gender-neutral tweaks to ~300 other emoji and 800 total changes.
  • Smart Unlock's "Trusted face" system is dead: Although it was disabled in a previous beta (with a workaround), the feature has been entirely removed, probably in anticipation of a new "Face authentication" feature to debut with the Pixel 4.
  • Touching the fingerprint sensor no longer keeps your phone awake: The unofficial "hack" to keep your phone's screen on by resting your finger against the rear fingerprint sensor has been killed in Android 10 (at least, for the Pixels that have it). It may be a bug, there's an item in the issue tracker for it, we'll have to see.
  • The ability to select images in the recents/multitasking UI is back in Android 10 after it was broken in the early Android Q beta.
  • Battery stats changes in the notification shade can be reverted: The Android Q betas replaced the remaining battery percentage in the expanded notification shade with an estimate of battery longevity, but not everyone likes the change. A workaround has been found, though: disabling Device Health Services reverts you back to battery percentage.
  • Feature Flags removed from Android 10: Those Feature Flags spotted in the early Android 10 betas, (removed in Beta 3), are still gone as of the final Android 10 release.
  • The Android version number is listed in the expanded quick settings shade if Developer Options are enabled.
  • All notifications are silent for some on Android 10 if no silent notifications are present — probably (hopefully?) a bug.
  • Device sensors (rotation, brightness, proximity, etc.) are broken on Android 10 for some, though there is a (very complicated) temporary fix.
  • "Device admin" has been deprecated in Android 10, breaking Exchange account sync for some implementations. Some have reported the issue was fixed with a subsequent app update, or changing PIN length for sign-in.
  • Battery charge fails to stay full for some on Android 10.
  • Android 10 has a known memory leak related to the new Bubbles/chat heads notifications.
  • Some Verizon customers are experiencing a serious delay when dialing out for calls on Android 10, though it should be fixed via an update to the My Verizon app.
  • New "Rescue Mode" option in the Android 10 bootloader for (at least some) Pixels appears to allow ADB commands without a boot or recovery environment, plus a new "fastbootd" option that shoots you to a dedicated fastboot mode without rebooting again to the bootloader.
  • Live Caption shown off at I/O this year doesn't seem to have made it into the stable release of Android 10 — though Live Transcribe, presumably based on similar tech, was released for devices running Android 5.0 and later.
  • Audio input can be shared between two or more apps on Android 10: This feature likely builds on the new Audio Capture API meant for things like Live Caption, though it could also be useful in other ways, though at least one of the apps must be registered as an accessibility service. It likely can't be used for things like call recording, due to other limitations, though. (More details here.)
  • As expected, the new gestures don't work for third-party launchers in Android 10's stable release.
  • The "time to read" accessibility setting didn't make the final cut in Android 10 stable. Based on our own tests, it previously controlled toast-type notifications. The new "time to take action" setting has expanded to control toasts as of the Android 10 stable release, so the two settings are effectively one now.
  • Theming: Android Q Beta 1 includes support for changing accent colors, fonts, and icon shapes — though the selection is limited.
    • Beta 2 expands the reach of icon theming slightly to include the Settings app.
    • Google's Gboard will respond to theme-level accent color changes and Dark Theme settings.
    • Four more accent colors for theming in Beta 4: Enjoy the colors Cinnamon, Ocean, Space, and Orchid.
    • Customizable styles and clocks inbound: Based on a Settings Suggestion (they're a thing) spotted in Android Q Beta 6, customizable "styles, wallpapers, clocks, and more" are coming to Android — or, at least, future Pixels running Android Q. Some clock options are already hidden in current builds, accessible via ADB.
    • More details regarding the upcoming "Pixel Themes" app have leaked, though it isn't live in Android 10's stable release.
  • Estimate for remaining battery life in quick notification/quick settings: Apple may have responded to criticism around decreasing battery capacity in its latest MacBook Pro refresh by entirely eliminating battery life estimates, but Google is actually bringing that feature closer to the front and center in Android Q Beta 1, giving you that estimate in the expanded notification/quick settings shade. (Only if you enable battery percentage in the status bar.)
  • Wi-Fi Easy Connect: Android Q will support the latest standard by the Wi-Fi Alliance for "Easy Connect," allowing credentials to be shared over QR codes, Bluetooth LE, and NFC — basically a more secure and better version of WPS, which Android 9 Pie dropped support for.
    • You can also see Wi-Fi passwords in plain text in the same location as the QR codes.
  • System-wide Dark Theme
    • Initially it was secret, incomplete, visually broke some apps, and the setting was removed, but Android Q Beta 1 landed with a new Dark Theme which further extended the previous device theme setting to apply a dark mode more widely. However, the setting itself has been removed as of Beta 1, so you have to enable/disable it via ADB right now.
    • As of Beta 2, automatic night theme mode could be enabled via ADB.
    • Google finally made Dark Theme official at the I/O developer conference, at which Beta 3 landed.
    • Google's Gboard will respond to theme-level accent color changes and Dark Theme settings.
    • Force Dark Theme developer option: Whether you're a developer trying to see how your app might respond, or a user willing to throw caution and design to the wind, Android Q Beta 3 has a new option to force the system-wide dark mode onto every app. As you'd expect, things can break.
    • Dark Theme becomes a simple switch: Rather than a standalone nested menu with a mere two options, Google has made the binary choice a binary toggle.
    • Dark mode notifications get their original icons: Beta 4 gives back notifications shown in dark mode their full-color notification icons, rather than monochrome versions.
    • Volume panel gets dark mode: One of the last big stragglers to migrate to dark mode gets a fresh coat of paint in Beta 4.
    • Dark boot animation: Not all devices seem to have gotten it, but Beta 5 finally fixes one of the longest-standing complaints about using a Pixel at night.
      • As of Beta 6, all Pixels should have the dark/black boot animation working.
    • Dark Theme context menus now have a gray background instead of black in Beta 5.
  • Fully Gestural Navigation
    • More fully iPhone-style "Fully gestural navigation" finally appeared at I/O in Beta 3. It isn't enabled by default, but it replaces the old pill with a super-slim navigation bar (that can be transparent if apps support it). Swiping switches apps, and the back button has been moved to an edge-gesture (as was previously spotted but hidden in Beta 2).
      • In this mode, a new corner gesture activates the Assistant.
        • And as of Beta 5 it gets a snazzy new animation, too.
        • There's also a new bracket that appears in the corners together with the pill when unlocking the phone or returning to the homescreen that reminds you of the feature.
    • Gesture navigation breaks screen pinning: Pinning an app with gesture navigation enabled can result in a softlock. 
    • Fully Gestural Navigation gets rotation lock button: One of the biggest downsides of the new navigational system introduced in Beta 3 was the lack of space for a rotation lock button, and Beta 4 brings it back in floating form.
      • In Beta 6 this new button loses some of its transparency, appearing darker.
    • Gesture navigation tweaks: The fully gestural navigation which rolled out with Beta 3 saw a few improvements in Beta 4, like more reliable triggers for multitasking/recents, subtle tweaks to the "back" edge-swipe animation and behavior, and it plays nicer with things like YouTube PiP.
    • A "Back Sensitivity" setting showed up in leaks that might further tweak the edge gesture and its activation, but it isn't live as of Beta 5.
      • And it's here as of Beta 6.
    • "Peek" edge long-press for navigation drawers: Long-holding just short of the edge on Beta 5 will let you grab a "peeking" notification drawer's edge to pull it out while using the new gesture navigation system.
      • There is also a buggy two-finger gesture that does the same (sometimes), but it isn't clear if it's an intended feature or an accident.
    • Leaving full-screen content is easier with gesture navigation on Beta 5: My personal bugbear with the new Q gestures has finally been fixed, and exiting content like videos doesn't require swiping from two different edges. As of Beta 5, a single swipe from the left or right pulls up the gesture bar, and a second swipe from that same edge triggers back — joy.
    • The gesture bar is hidden on the home screen in Beta 6: The thin, oblong pill disappears on the default launcher when on the home screen.
    • Two-finger gesture added to trigger accessibility button functionality in full gesture navigation mode (works in DP5 and DP6).
  • App defaults categories for call screening and emergencies: Android, unlike iOS, will let you replace default apps performing default actions with... whatever you want, really. The category of default apps is expanding to include a "call screening app" and an "emergency app," letting you set new third-party defaults for both of those categories.
  • Native desktop mode: Mobile/desktop convergence is a longstanding dream (and one it's easy to fail at), but Android Q Beta 1 introduced Google's own take on the idea, with a desktop-style UI featuring free-form window management, though it's clearly a work in progress.
    • Desktop mode gets a context menu: The new experimental desktop mode added in Q picks up a right-click context menu in Beta 4, with contents identical to a long-press.
  • Built-in screen recording: Bloggers everywhere will be pretty pleased to hear that Android Q Beta 1 shipped with a built-in screen recorder. YMMV, though, some have reported bugs with it, while others have no issue.
    • Gone in Android 10's stable release, since Feature Flags are also gone.
  • Android Q Beta feedback app: We knew it would be there and... well, it is.
    • The Feedback app in Beta 2 has been updated with a snazzy new dark mode and a few other minor tweaks.
      • As was probably expected, this was removed in Android 10's stable release.
  • Chat head-style Bubbles: Hidden in Beta 1, and later announced with Beta 2, a new bubble notification system seems to be included in Android Q. Think Facebook's chat heads, and you have the basic concept.
    • The toggle for this has been moved to developer options.
  • New "Emergency" button in power menu: The new emergency button takes you to a dialer with access to user-configured emergency information like allergies and emergency contacts.
  • Device uptime added to Settings -> About phone.
  • Seekable progress bar for media notifications: Android Q Beta 2 added a progress bar to notifications for some music apps, as well as YouTube, letting you seek around without having to open the app.
  • "Pixel Themes" app likely coming: Android Q's new theming won't exist in a vacuum, a separate app may be coming as well.
  • "Deep Press" might be Google's version of Apple's 3D Touch: Pressure-sensitive actions may be coming to Android Q (assuming supported hardware) based on details spotted in API documentation.
  • Audio balance in Accessibility: You can set audio balance between the left and right channels via a slider in Accessibility.
  • New "Focus Mode" in Digital Wellbeing disables distracting apps: When you really need to get work done, and you might be prone to easy distraction, a new Focus Mode will ensure certain apps that you set don't prevent you from being productive.
  • Beta 3 supports twice as many devices as Android P's betas: Last year nearly a dozen devices were able to take advantage of the Android P betas, and this year Google has doubled that number to around two dozen as of Beta 3.
  • Quick settings tile to disable device sensors: Whether you're privacy concerns border on paranoia or you're just going out on a limb trying to save power (we're not actually sure it'll make a difference), Android Q Beta 3 adds an option to disable device sensors with a new quick settings tile, toggleable via developer options.
  • Modular updates via Project Mainline: Google is breaking down some OS-level updates in a way that they can be delivered to devices via the Play Store, distributed as both APKs and new APEX files. TL;DR: some OS-level updates could arrive even more quickly and conveniently in the future.
  • Automatic car crash detection: Signs that Google might be testing a car crash detection method on Pixels were spotted in Android Q Beta 3, though it isn't clear what this functionality might connect to.
  • Tasker-like "Rules" functionality could be coming: The folks at XDA spotted some strings buried in a system APK that implies automation tools may be coming to Android Q.
    • XDA spotted this functionality was present but hidden in Beta 5, and they got it working.
    • This still seems to be disabled/hidden in Android 10's stable release, but it could land in a future update.
  • Dynamic System Updates: A bit of a misnomer, in my opinion, but Dynamic System Updates landed in Beta 4, delivering the ability to boot Generic System Images without the tedium of an unlocked bootloader or manual flashing.
  • "Face authentication" details hidden in Beta 4: Teardowns of Beta 4 have revealed strings related to a new "face authentication" biometric security feature, potentially tied to the Face ID-like functionality previously spotted.
  • Hidden power button Google Pay, plus hidden cards and passes settings screen: With an ADB command, you can flip the power button on Q Beta 4 to provide quick access to Google Pay cards for payment, or other cards and passes via an entirely new Settings pane.
  • New "Rescue Mode" option in the Android 10 bootloader for (at least some) Pixels appears to allow ADB commands without a boot or recovery environment, plus a new "fastbootd" option that shoots you to a dedicated fastboot mode without rebooting again to the bootloader.
  • Rounded screen corners/notches in screenshots: As of Beta 1, Android Q shows both the rounded corners on screens in devices like the Pixel 3, as well as the notch on the Pixel 3 XL. This may have been a mistake, and we might see this reverted, or it could be the norm going forward. Time will tell.
    • Beta 2 fixed screenshots, which are back to their notchless, normal selves.
  • Grayscale options for individual apps: We don't know what it's going to look like or how it may manifest, but Google assures us Android Q will eventually allow developers to set individual apps as grayscale — presumably separately from the existing user-facing option via Digital Wellbeing's Wind Down setting.
  • App info redesign, option to open app itself, notification stats, "Disable" becomes "Uninstall": In Android Q Beta 1, the app info pane has seen a bit of a visual makeover, with newly centered icons and text. You can now open the app directly from it, daily notification averages are shown, and Google has changed "Disable" to "Uninstall" for system apps (and "Enable" became "Install"). This pseudo-uninstallation process also no longer offers to remove app updates.
    • Google has decided to revert that last change. "Disable" is back. A few other options in app info have also been renamed.
  • Ambient Display shows music info during playback: If your Pixel is playing back music on Android Q Beta 1, the Ambient Display will show details about the current track.
  • New battery icon: Following the style set by Google's new iconography elsewhere, you get an outline to the battery icon, and battery saver no longer makes it orange.
  • Profile picture in Settings: Pretty self-explanatory, your Google account's avatar appears now in the top right, sort of like some other Google-made apps. It is also a shortcut to account settings, device information, emergency info, and payment methods.
  • Moved Quick Settings edit button and carrier name: Beta 3 moved all these to different corners, rather than in a line at the bottom.
  • Bluetooth devices get colorful icons: Following the iconography changes elsewhere, Beta 3 moves to more colorful icons for different types of devices in Bluetooth settings.
  • File picker gets indicator to pull up for more options: 'nuf said, Beta 3.
  • Emergency information gets a redesign: As of Beta 3, header text is red, information is sorted into cards, and the entire UI looks a bit different, hiding field editing behind new edit buttons.
  • New Wi-Fi icon: Beta 4 adds an outline around the Wi-Fi icon, better matching the outlined battery.
  • Signal strength indicator icon gets an outline to match Wi-Fi and battery.
  • Slightly smaller app labels in the Pixel Launcher (appeared in Q Beta 6).
  • Slightly tweaked animation for opening app drawer on Pixel Launcher: Icons on home screen move "in" as well as fading out (appeared in Q Beta 6).
  • Mild, iOS-style tweaks to the existing pill-based two-button navigation: Android Q revamps gestures to work a little more like they do in iOS, with swipes in both directions for navigating between applications. Initially spotted as a hidden change in the Pixel Launcher, Beta 2 later expanded on these tweaks — with an even more minimal (and non-functional) layout hidden inside.
  • New Share Sheet/menu
  • Slices will bring options from Settings into apps: Although they haven't been used very widely yet, Android's Slices are a nifty way to integrate stuff from one app directly into another. In Android Q, they're expanding to work with the settings app, so you'll be able to control things like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and other system-level settings from inside third-party apps. Snazzy.
  • Accidental item removal on the Pixel Launcher: The version of the Pixel Launcher included with Android Q Beta 1 allows you to easily reset things if you accidentally remove a widget or icon from your homescreen, with a convenient "Undo" option in a toast-type notification which appears after the erroneous action.
  • Album art for the lockscreen: Android has long used album art for the lockscreen background with a slight blur, but as of Android Q Beta 1 the blur is pretty crazy, and it's doing some strange things to colors. Definitely an acquired taste.
    • Turns out, this was just a bug with Play Music, other apps still have unmolested album art blur.
  • Better, prettier "Files" app: Android Q Beta 1 also delivered an update to Android's built-in, forgotten Files app. The new one is decidedly 'Material 2/Theme" in look, with some added file filtering functionality, plus Dark Theme support.
  • Notification management
    • Long-pressing notifications: Filtering the daily deluge of notifications is becoming a greater priority these days, and Android Q steps things up by providing a new option on a long-press for how to manage them, plus an overall improved UI compared to Android Pie.
      • The options present when long-pressing to manage notifications were further simplified into two settings in Android Q Beta 3.
    • Swipe left to snooze notifications: Android 8.0 Oreo introduced notification snoozing, but in Android Q it's much better integrated, taking over the swipe left action. If you were used to swiping in any direction to close notifications, you'll have to adapt to swiping right.
    • 'Bell' icon to indicate recent notifications: Google's all about notification management these days, and Android Q Beta 1 introduced a subtle new feature that gave notifications a ringing bell-shaped icon to indicate which is responsible for your recent interruption.
    • Minor notification settings rework: Google has reworked the settings pane in Beta 4 for individual app notification management, bringing colorful new icons to show priority type and switching checkboxes to toggles.
      • A bell icon also shows which notification types are set to "alerting" vs. "silent."
    • Most of your disabled notifications end up on a list now: Android Q Beta 1 added a filter to the app notifications pane in settings that better helps you track down which apps notifications have been disabled for (though it only lists whole apps with notifications disabled, not individual channels.)
    • Lockscreen notification changes: Beta 5 has tweaked the grouping for notification options, moving away from just the idea of "sensitive" notifications (which is still present and controlled via a toggle). Now you can also select between alerting and silent notification groups, bringing even those bundled-together, low-priority notifications to the lockscreen if you want them.
    • Tweaked layout to recent apps list in "Apps & notifications" section of Settings: What was previously a vertical list of five apps is now a horizontal list of three, plus some other more minor layout tweaks.
    • Separate options for ring and notification vibrations: We don't know when it was introduced (it was present as early as Android Q Beta 2), but you can now control vibration strength for ring and notification channels separately — or even disable them separately.
    • Simplified notification alert options: In Android Q Beta 3, Google has consolidated configuring notification alerts into two categories: interruptive/alert me, and gentle/show silently. The specific names you see might vary between those options. The three notification options Android used to have (block, show silently, and keep alerting) are still present elsewhere in Android Q, and the new options behave the same as "show silently" and "keep alerting," in our experience.
      • The naming for the final configuration is "Alerting" and "Silent" as of the Android 10 stable release.
      • Oddly, all notifications are silent for some on Android 10's stable release if no silent notifications are present — probably (hopefully?) a bug.
    • New "Hide silent notification status icons" setting: It appears to do the same thing as the previous "Show silently and minimize" notification setting, but it's new.
      • This has either been renamed and relocated or removed as of the Android 10 stable release
    • Hiding "sensitive content" in notifications now exempts "unlocked" states like Smart Lock: Before Android Q Beta 4, you could either set "sensitive" notification content to be shown, partially hidden, or not to show notifications at all. That middle setting — which would exclude the particular content of a notification, though it would show the app and type — now also shows content if the phone is in a pseudo-unlocked state, like Smart Lock.
      • Google has further broken this feature out in the final release with three settings for notifications on the lock screen (show alerting + silent, show alerting only, and don't show any), plus a separate toggle for "sensitive content."
    • "Adaptive Notifications" in Beta 4: No idea what they are, though they claimed to work with the short-lived "Gentle" notification option. This setting appeared and then disappeared in later versions.
      • New "Adaptive Notifications" permission in Special app access (appeared in Q Beta 4).
      • Later betas also have an "Adaptive notification priority" setting in Developer options.
    • More notification tweaks: The names attached to notification types have been changed (Prioritized -> Alerting, and Gentle -> Silent), Silent notifications are grouped into a single card now for all-at-once dismissal, and notification "snoozing" is now optional but disabled by default,
    • Settings Panel for Notification Channels spotted in DP2 expand: Initially spotted appearing as a Settings Shortcut in DP2, the Notification Channels Settings Panel now also appears as a pop-up in Beta 5 when managing notifications from the shade, rather than taking you to the Settings app.
  • Easier access to audio output switching: Now Playing notifications on Android Q provide easier access to switch audio between devices (as in, between Bluetooth headsets/speakers and the device itself, etc.). This isn't strictly new as Android Pie allowed you to do this, but it was buried in settings. Now it's much more accessible.
  • Battery Saver can activate automatically based on your habits: Battery Saver has been a part of Android for a while now, but Android Q Beta 1 adds a feature you can enable which automatically triggers the power-saving mode if the phone believes that, based on your usage habits, it may not last until your usual charging time.
  • eSIM becomes dual SIM for Pixel 2 and 3: The Android Q Beta 1 enabled limited dual-sim functionality on the Pixel 2 and Pixel 3, though it doesn't allow for simultaneous use of both connections, merely so-called Dual SIM Dual Standby, rather than Dual SIM Dual Active.
    • The implementation in the Android Q Beta 2 update is even more functional, with improved dialogs and the ability to select the active data SIM, as well as preference for calls/SMS.
    • Beta 3 removes the options to activate this functionality, though it's still present if you had it enabled before.
    • Beta 4 entirely nerfs this feature, disabling it even if you had it enabled in a previous beta.
    • And it's back as of the Android 10 stable release, but only for the Pixel 3a. (Yay!) Note that it doesn't work with all carriers, though.
  • Freeform windows can be used without ADB: In what is likely connected to the Desktop mode addition, freeform window management is becoming more of a first-class citizen compared to the Nougat-era version, with an actual toggle in developer options.
  • Backup "cloud" icon's arrow now points in a more logical direction: Easily the biggest new feature in Android Q, just don't let that cloud fly away with all your precious bits.
  • Haptic feedback for text selection: Expect and enjoy a little tingle as you slide around input fields selecting text.
  • Vibration when plugged into charger: The "charging sounds" setting is now "charging sounds and vibration." You'll get a little bit of tactile feedback when you plug your phone into power on Q.
  • New accessibility options make toast notifications last longer: Behavior for the two new "time to read" and "time to take action" settings is a little inconsistent, but Android Q Beta 1 added options to make certain types of notifications, including actionable and non-actionable toast notifications, last longer based on your settings.
    • "Time to read" didn't make the final cut in Android 10 stable, but based on our own tests, it previously controlled toast-type notifications. The new "time to take action" setting has also expanded to control toasts, so the two settings are effectively one now.
  • New feature flags: Android Q Beta 1 added a literal pile of new feature flags, including animation tweaks, those hints at the top of the settings menu, two new flags that control item organization in other sections of settings, and two which control the previously discovered QR code Wi-Fi setting and audio output device.
  • End call sound effect: The loud beep at the end of calls on Pixels has been replaced by a smoother two-tone sound effect.
  • "Active Edge" remapping: A hidden ADB option for reassigning the squeeze gesture on Pixels was discovered in Android Q, allowing them to be set to other virtual assistant applications like Alexa or Cortana.
  • Apps can no longer turn Wi-Fi on/off: In what is sure to upset users of automation apps like Tasker, Android Q prevents apps from turning on/off Wi-Fi. Instead, they're urged to integrate settings panel Slices.
  • Do Not Disturb schedule customization: You can now individually create and choose different behaviors for different schedules (i.e., different Do Not Disturb modes like "Driving, "Sleeping," or "Work").
  • Bluetooth device details tweaks: The layout of the device details settings pane has been tweaked a bit.
  • Last 3 previously connected Bluetooth devices: Previously accessible only via a sub-menu, the last three connected devices are now visible directly in the "connected devices" pane.
  • Always-On Display/lockscreen
    • New enter key on lockscreen.
    • Charging status moved to corner.
      • This is reverted as of Beta 3.
    • Notification layout for Always-On Display changed, white background.
      • The layout remains, but the white background is gone in Android 10 stable.
    • "Now Playing" details truncated.
      • We aren't sure if this is still present in Android 10's release (Pixels only recognize like five popular songs).
    • Calendar events and traffic details moved to "pill" beneath notifications.
      • This appears to have been reverted in the stable Android 10 release.
    • New but hidden lockscreen clocks.
    • Lock icon wiggle: If your credentials aren't recognized in Beta 3, the lock icon on the lockscreen will rotate sort of like a shaking head (or Shaq/a cat). The associated error message is also white instead of red.
    • Lock icon on lockscreen moved to top in Beta 4.
    • Ambient display shows weather together with music: It used to be one or the other (with music superseding weather), but on Beta 4 the Ambient Display on Pixels will show both together.
    • Turning off location from lockscreen requires authentication: As of Beta 4, disabling location via the Quick Settings requires entering your credentials — likely to mitigate theft concerns, though you can still disable things like data and Wi-Fi, so...
    • Lockscreen notification changes: Beta 5 has tweaked the grouping for notification options, moving away from just the idea of "sensitive" notifications (which is still present and controlled via a toggle). Now you can also select between alerting and silent notification groups, bringing even those bundled-together, low-priority notifications to the lockscreen if you want them.
    • "Double-tap to check phone" and "Lift to check phone" show the full lock screen instead of the Ambient Display, as they did on Android 9 Pie.
  • App info in search in Pixel Launcher: You can access the "App info" settings pane directly from a long-press of the app's icon in the Search dialog.
  • New App install dialog: Now a popup/overlay rather than a full-screen thing.
  • Pixel Launcher integration into Digital Wellbeing: It's hidden right now, but the Pixel Launcher may eventually support pausing/resuming apps in Digital Wellbeing.
    • This made the cut in both subsequent betas and the stable release of Android 10.
  • Individual volume channel controls return to popup: Stripped out in the migration to Android P's volume menu, Android Q brings back the individual controls for specific volume channels like Media, Call, and Ring, accessible in a popup via the button that previously brought you to volume settings.
  • Wi-Fi/Bluetooth actionable toggles added to main Settings menu: Appearing in the same spot in Settings where the occasional tips do for Pixels, Slice-like shortcuts to Wi-Fi and Bluetooth settings appear in specific circumstances, such as when connected to a device or Wi-Fi is turned off for a while.
  • Selecting images in Recents UI is broken: Android P introduced the ability to select text and images via the Recents UI, and as of Beta 2 (and maybe Beta 1, we can't be sure) that functionality is no longer working.
    • It's back as of the Android 10 stable release.
  • Toggles and sliders in Settings' search: Slice-like shortcuts to controls appear when searching for related terms in the Settings app on Android Q.
  • Changing volume no longer plays a preview sound: In previous versions of Android, after changing the volume level for a specific channel (like ring or alarm), the device would play that sound back at the set volume, so you could tell what it might sound like. Not anymore.
  • Android version info in Settings is now a full-screen pane rather than a popup: 'Nuf said.
  • App intents or actions appearing in new places: They're hard to reproduce, but Android Q appears to roll out deeper integration of intents (maybe "App Actions?") connecting the content of one app with another. (I.e., if you're sent a message with a link, you might get a button to open it via Chrome in the notification, or an option to open a result in search via the dialer or Google Maps).
    • Turns out these "contextual actions" (if we can give them a name) are an official thing.
  • Family Link options integrated into Android Q settings: For easier parental control, Family Link's configurable options will now be appearing directly in Android Q's system settings. There are even a few changes like kids being able to remotely ask for more time, and parents can set limits per-app, not just device-wide.
  • Smart Replies come to more apps: Those Smart Replies that apps like Messages and Hangouts enjoyed will be even more widely available to other apps in Android Q.
  • Option to turn off Battery Saver mode once mostly charged: Android Q Beta 3 introduces an option for Battery Saver to automatically toggle itself off once your device hits 90% charged.
  • Pixel 3 and 3 XL pick up classic three-button navigation: Although the two phones never had the option before, Android Q Beta 3 gives the Pixel 3 and 3 XL the old-style three-button navigation bar, partly in the name of accessibility.
  • Android Beam is gone in Android Q: If you used Android Beam to send files between devices with a tap, you'll need to switch to something else like sharing via the Files app, as Android Q has killed Beam. (In fact, it killed it with Beta 1, we just didn't notice for months because almost no one uses Beam.)
    • Eventually, this will be replaced with something called "Fast Share" via the Files app.
  • Browser default selection improvements: Choosing default apps in Android was always a bit awkward (though it's great to have that freedom), but Google has made that process a bit easier in Android 10, and more explicitly presented it as a sort of permission, rather than just a generic setting.
  • Adaptive sleep placeholder in settings: Not everyone sees it, but a new "adaptive sleep" option that appeared in settings (and which had us excited) is actually just a placeholder for phone manufacturers who have implemented this sort of functionality on their own.
  • 230 new Emoji, 53 gender-neutral: Android Q will deliver system-level support for 230 new emoji, with 53 of those being non-gendered for universal use.
  • Messages notifications can't be silenced or blocked on Beta 3: This latest release is proving to be a bit buggier than the previous two, and right now that includes customizing notification channels for the Messages app, which you can't do.
    • This seems to be fixed in Android 10, though Messages shows a reduced number of notification channels through Settings. They're still available for every conversation via the app itself, though.
  • Carrier settings versions: Android Q Beta 3 shows which version of your carrier's settings (stuff like APN/server details) it is running.
  • Smart Lock could be rebranded as Pixel Presence: Some folks using Android Q Beta 4 with specific language/localization settings are seeing Smart Lock renamed Pixel Presence on the lockscreen, implying we could see Google rename the feature for its Pixel phones.
  • Recents/multitasking menu in Q Beta 4 shows Digital Wellbeing timers: If you enable app-limiting timers in Digital Wellbeing, Android Q Beta 4 will show a blue overlay with your remaining quota when apps are getting close to their daily limit.
  • Can't disable app suggestions in the Pixel Launcher on Beta 4: It isn't clear if this is a bug or intentional behavior, but you are no longer able to turn off the app suggestions that appear at the top of the app drawer in the Pixel Launcher on Beta 4, though the setting will carry through if you had it disabled on Beta 3.
    • Disabling app suggestions is back in Beta 5, though some of the nested options have changed.
  • Android Q won't automatically reconnect to Wi-Fi networks connected via a specific API that you manually disconnect from: While we wish this feature would extend to all networks that you manually disconnect from, Q Beta 4 won't try to reconnect to access points you connect to via apps or other uses of the Wi-Fi network suggestion API.
  • Emergency info appears in the app drawer in the Beta 4 Android Emulator: The app takes you to the same location in settings other means of access do, but it's curious it would appear in the app drawer at all, and only in the emulator.
  • Quick Settings shortcut confusion: Tap targets for some quick settings details didn't make sense in Beta 4 (though they've since been fixed in Beta 5 and the stable Android 10 release).
  • Pixel Launcher will eventually get pull-down notification gesture: A future version of the Pixel Launcher may have a swipe-down-anywhere gesture to activate the notification shade, like many third-party launchers have.
    • This was spotted in a leak purported to be Beta 5, but it didn't pan out in later betas or the general release.
  • Third-party launchers won't have access to gesture navigation for a while: Android Q's new gestures don't play nice with some launchers, so until Google can fix things in a "post-launch update," third-party launchers will have to make do with the 3- and 2-button navigation systems.
  • Translation built into multitasking/recents could be coming: Though it wasn't live in Beta 5, one of those leaked builds originally purported to be from Beta 5 has a new translation feature that works for content shown in other apps from the multitasking UI. It might show up in a later release.
    • This also doesn't appear to have panned out in the final release — maybe a later update will enable it.
  • Android Q Easter egg with hidden Picross puzzle: Every version of Android gets a hidden Easter egg. Some are a bit more lame, but others have included hidden games or cat collecting. Based on the latest developer builds for the Essential Phone, Android Q's Easter egg starts with a graphic spelling out "Android 10" which can be tweaked to say "Android Q," plus a further hidden Picross-style puzzle. When solved, it shows a system icon.
  • Night sight moves to main interface in Google Camera: As spotted much earlier, Android Q Beta 6 has moved the Pixel's Night Sight low-light camera mode to the left-most view, replacing Panorama. (Not strictly Android Q, since this is Pixel-exclusive and controlled by the Google Camera app, but it was introduced in Q and will likely roll out more widely with the final update.)
  • Smart Storage now tells you when it last ran (appeared in Q Beta 6).
  • Holding the power button when the screen is turned off immediately opens the power menu with no delay. (Previously the first press would wake the screen, requiring a 2nd long-hold to access the power menu. Appeared in DP5.)
  • Privacy options have a new root-level section in Settings, though most of its contents are the same as the Privacy section as it used to be in the "Security & Location" section under previous Android releases.
  • New Android logo in boot screen: As part of the recent rebranding effort, Pixels running Android 10 picked up a new logo for Android on the boot screen.
  • Play Store slices appearing in Settings: Shortcuts to some actions in the Play Store are appearing (following a prompt) in the Settings app on Android 10.
  • Touching the fingerprint sensor no longer keeps your phone awake: The unofficial "hack" to keep your phone's screen on by resting your finger against the rear fingerprint sensor has been killed in Android 10 (at least, for the Pixels that have it). It may be a bug, there's an item in the issue tracker for it, we'll have to see.
  • The Android version number is listed in the expanded quick settings shade if Developer Options are enabled.
  • Tweaks to identifiable permissions like location, IMEI MAC address, background app changes: Android Q, as of Beta 1, limits access to non-changeable device IDs like the MAC address or IMEI, and further changes permissions to provide options so they can be granted "only while the app is in use," rather than just a blanket yes/no. That means an app that isn't immediately open doesn't necessarily have access to your location. Background apps also can't suddenly change focus to bring themselves forward anymore.
  • Clipboard managers are ded: Although clipboard managers can provide utility in some workflows, the permissions they rely on could be used surreptitiously by nefarious apps in ways that could violate your privacy. From Android Q on, Google's giving them the boot. Only input method editors (keyboard apps, etc.) and foreground apps with focus will get access to the clipboard.
  • Revoke permissions at first launch for apps targeting older (pre-Oreo) API levels: Apps that haven't updated to target Android 8.0 Oreo will spit a new interstitial screen at launch that asks which permissions you'd like to enable, allowing you to manually disable those you don't want — and maybe break the app in the process.
    • As of Beta 2, Android will ask for permissions to be granted again when launching apps installed before the update.
  • Overlay attack mitigation: In the world of Android security, overlay-based attacks are one of the bigger problems, but Android Q works to mitigate their effect by changing how the overlay permissions work. From now on they'll need to be granted again every time you open an app that uses them.
  • Smart Lock developer options: Tweaks to how "trust agents" (like Google's Smart Lock) can keep the device unlocked.
    • In what might be related, Smart Lock's "Trusted Face" feature is broken in Beta 6, though there's a workaround. 
  • MAC address randomization: Initially added in Android P as an experimental feature, MAC address randomization is now on by default in Android Q — though it's consistent, you will see the same randomly generated address when connecting to the same network again. It can be disabled if you need to turn it off, though.
  • Scoped Storage in Android Q nerfs filesystem access: Apps targeting Android Q will be limited in how they can access the filesystem via new isolated storage sandboxes. That means apps won't need permissions to write their own files, while also enhancing security between apps through isolated storage. It also means that they won't have blanket filesystem access by default. Old permissions aren't going away any time soon, and apps targeting platforms before Q will work via a "compatibility mode" that doesn't include these restrictions.
  • Encryption for all devices, including low-end hardware: Performance remains a question, but Android Q will require disc encryption, even on low-end hardware and.
  • TLS 1.3 will be enabled by default, and biometrics will now be classified as explicit and implicit based on type for different levels of security and privacy in different circumstances, plus other developer-facing improvements and changes.
  • All apps on Beta 5 get "all-the-time" location permission to test background location access notifications: As a test of permission granularity and privacy changes in Android Q, Beta 5 has granted all apps with location permission access to your location at all times, to test and show off the notification for background location access. (Don't worry, this shouldn't be the default behavior come final release, it's just a test for the notification.)
  • Dynamic Depth data: Android Q will allow for apps to request depth information from the cameras. Google's done some incredible work to extract that information from its cameras (without the help of parallax, I should add), and in Android Q, even third-party apps will be able to make use of that extra data in new and interesting ways. I can't wait to see what gets cooked up.
  • ART enhancements: Developers can enjoy enhanced performance and more efficient garbage collection on Android Q via a suite of impressive but highly technical Android runtime enhancements.
  • Further non-SDK API deprecation: As much as possible, Google doesn't want developers using undocumented APIs in Android, and Android Q furthers this crackdown, expanding the list of affected APIs.
  • Folding phone tweaks: Android Q will feature some developer-facing modifications to better work with the emerging device form factor, but they're all too technical to get into here.
  • Smart home/IoT tweaks for Wi-Fi setup: Configuring smart home gadgets, which almost always need their own special app and require a peer-to-peer Wi-Fi connection, can be easier in Android Q. Developers will be able to configure their setup apps to have a list of preferred SSIDs, and paired with the expansion of slices to offer a built-in Wi-Fi picker in those apps, that can make the often tedious IoT setup process a little bit faster and simpler for consumers.
  • Apps assigned to default roles will get more permissions: Details are a little sparse on precisely which permissions each category gets, but apps that you assign as the default for a given role — like browser, SMS app, launcher, etc. — will pick up elevated access to certain functions based on that role.
  • Foldables (running Q) added to Android Studio emulator: Developers looking to get a head start on developing for foldable devices can do so via the Canary release of Android Studio 3.5, which includes emulator images that have folding functionality.
  • API for microphone direction: Android Q includes new APIs that allow developers to request specific microphone directions like "front" or "back."
  • New "Notification Assistant" API for apps like Tasker: Android Q may be making things harder for apps that harness things like automation or overlays, but Google is introducing a new default app setting and associated API that might mitigate things for those sorts of apps slightly — at least when it comes to notifications.
    • This feature isn't intended for general public use, though. After enabling it in Beta 3 and accidentally publishing documentation for the API, the pages have been taken down, and Google has confirmed that these actions were intentional. Notification Assistant is an invite-only API club.
  • Vulkan 1.1 required on all 64-bit devices running Q or higher: Support for Vulkan API 1.1 was introduced on Android P, but as of Q and forward it will be a hard requirement for 64-bit devices.
  • AV1 video codec, Opus audio codec: Android Q will have native support for the new, data-saving AV1 video codec and the Opus audio codec.
  • Device temperature API: Smartphones get a lot warmer now than they used to — at least, excluding Qualcomm's wonderful Snapdragon 808/810. With developers already pushing the limits of passive cooling with heatpipes, as well as external active cooling solutions, a new Thermal API can further help apps respond to changes in temperature for an enhanced experience.
  • Audio Playback Capture API: A new API is behind the upcoming magic of Live Caption shown off at I/O, which allows for real-time subtitling of any audio being played on your device. However, the app could also be used for other novel purposes by enterprising developers.
  • "Device admin" has been deprecated in Android 10, breaking Exchange account sync for some implementations. Some have reported the issue was fixed with a subsequent app update, or changing PIN length for sign-in.
  • Audio input can be shared between two or more apps on Android 10: This feature likely builds on the new Audio Capture API meant for things like Live Caption, though it could also be useful in other ways, though at least one of the apps must be registered as an accessibility service. It likely can't be used for things like call recording, due to other limitations, though. (More details here.)
  • Device sensors (rotation, brightness, proximity, etc.) are broken on Android 10 for some, though there is a (very complicated) temporary fix.
  • Battery charge fails to stay full for some on Android 10.
  • Android 10 has a known memory leak related to the new Bubbles/chat heads notifications.
  • Some Verizon customers are experiencing a serious delay when dialing out for calls on Android 10, though it should be fixed via an update to the My Verizon app.
  • As expected, the new gestures don't work for third-party launchers in Android 10's stable release.
  • All notifications are silent for some on Android 10 if no silent notifications are present — probably (hopefully?) a bug.
  • "Device admin" has been deprecated in Android 10, breaking Exchange account sync for some implementations. Some have reported the issue was fixed with a subsequent app update, or changing PIN length for sign-in.
  • Live Caption shown off at I/O this year doesn't seem to have made it into the stable release of Android 10 — though Live Transcribe, presumably based on similar tech, was released for devices running Android 5.0 and later.
  • "Pixel Themes" still isn't here yet, though we have an idea for what to expect.
  • As expected, the new gestures don't work for third-party launchers in Android 10's stable release.
  • Smart Unlock's "Trusted face" system is dead: Although it was disabled in a previous beta (with a workaround), the feature has been entirely removed, probably in anticipation of a new "Face authentication" feature to debut with the Pixel 4.
  • Touching the fingerprint sensor no longer keeps your phone awake: The unofficial "hack" to keep your phone's screen on by resting your finger against the rear fingerprint sensor has been killed in Android 10 (at least, for the Pixels that have it). It may be a bug, there's an item in the issue tracker for it, we'll have to see.
  • Feature Flags removed from Android 10: Those Feature Flags spotted in the early Android 10 betas, (removed in Beta 3), are still gone as of the final Android 10 release.
    • With Feature Flags gone , the built-in screen recorder is also gone.
  • Tasker-like "Rules" functionality is still missing.
  • Messages is missing a lot of notification channels in Settings, though it isn't clear if that's intentional. They're still available per-conversation in the app itself.
  • The Feedback app was removed from the stable Android 10 release, but that's probably to be expected.
  • Dual-SIM eSIM functionality landed for the Pixel 3a and 3a XL, but other Pixels with the eSIM included on previous dual-SIM tests don't appear to have the feature — that may be intentional and there could be a reason behind it, but it's missing for some that had it during the betas.
  • "Fast Share," the anticipated Android Beam replacement, still isn't present in Android 10 yet, though it's possible that it might be delivered via the Files app and be a feature separate from (if well-integrated into) Android 10 itself.
  • The pull-down gesture for notifications in the Pixel Launcher spotted in a leaked beta isn't present in the final release, it isn't clear if Google changed its mind or if the feature is still planned for a later update.
  • The translation feature spotted in the recents/app switcher on a leaked build also didn't pan out in the stable Android 10 release.
  • No way to set the Dark Theme to follow a schedule like specific hours or sunrise/sunset — kind of a crazy omission considering it had an "automatic" setting when it wasn't just a toggle, and there's an ADB command for sun up/down.
  • What happened to "Adaptive Notifications?"  We didn't really know what it did, though the "gentle" notifications its too-short description seemed to rely on are now gone. Still, a permission and Developer option remain.