Android 7.0 Nougat


Editors’ Review

Android 7 Nougat brings plenty of refinements to Google’s popular mobile platform.


Multiwindow mode: New in Nougat is the ability to display two app windows at the same time, either side by side in a split-screen view or vertically, with one window on top and the other below. Adjust the dividing line between the two windows to make one app larger and one smaller. You can also drag and drop text or other elements from one window to another in multiwindow mode. And with Nougat and Android TV, you can pin a video on the screen while using an app.

Notifications: In the new Android OS, notifications are easier to work with. Respond directly in-line in a notification shade, including on the lockscreen, so you don’t have to launch another app to respond. Nougat also groups related notifications so that they appear as a single notification, letting you see messages in context.

Quick Settings: Quick Settings provide access to common system settings like Wi-Fi. They are now customizable, letting you set which ones you want to see in the notification list.

Power management: Nougat builds on Marshmallow’s battery-conservation techniques. It does a smarter job of saving energy when a device is unplugged but not in use, and limiting system activities to lessen power consumption.

Data savings: If you’re concerned about cellular data usage, the Data Saver tool lets you set a limit on the amount of network data that specific apps use. You can block background data usage and force apps to use less data in the foreground when possible. The tool also lets you whitelist specific apps for background data usage.

Display size: For users with low or impaired vision, a new accessibility setting lets you change a device’s display size, and you can blow up or shrink the elements on the screen.


Wait for the update: Nexus 5X, Nexus 6, Nexus 6P, Nexus 9, and Pixel C devices owners should be able to adopt Nougat quickly. While Google is pushing handset makers and carriers to release Nougat more quickly than they have released Android updates in the past, if you own a non-Nexus Android device, you most likely will have to wait for Nougat.

Android overlays and bloatware: Google allows handset makers and carriers to bolt on their own custom interfaces and add apps to the Android OS. The changes let vendors differentiate their devices, but that means users have to navigate through a device-specific interface cluttered with unwanted cameras, calendars, and messaging apps. If you are seeking an unadulterated Android experience, look to an Nexus device.

Bottom Line

Android 7’s helpful refinements and additions — including multiwindows, in-line notifications, and battery-saving tactics — make Nougat a welcome update.

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Google’s Android Nougat is finally here for your Nexus phone and tablet.

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