Google unfortunately could not unveil its new upgraded Jelly Bean OS in their event in New York , due to hurricane Sandy hitting hard. No need to be disheartened, as they gave a press release instead. Google launched Jelly Bean 4.2, which would be available in the LG Nexus 4 and the Nexus 10 Tablet. Though the 4.2 update is still Jelly Bean, there are not many changes to the UI, but the new update does bring with it a bunch of new goodies and performance improvements.
The core UI interface is basically the same as its previous version (4.1) on the smartphones , only difference you would find is the Analog clock has changed a bit, but when it comes to tablets it has changed quite a bit. Previously, tablets running Honey Comb (3.0) or Ice Cream Sandwich (4.0) OS used to have tile-style notifications in the lower-right corner and the app drawer in the upper-right. Now, interface shows a top-of-screen notifications pull down menu and a bottom-of-screen Favorites Tray with a centered icon for the app drawer and six app spots, three on each side of the app drawer icon.Now this will all depend on the manufacturer if this layout is applied on their tablets or will they stick to the old one.
Lock Screen Widgets:
The Jelly Bean 4.2 update brings with it an all new lock screen capable of supporting native widgets. This is different as compared to third party apps likes Widget Locker. Here the user can place widgets either on the main lock screen or even add more widgets on panels which can be accessed by swiping to the left.
Previously the settings icon on your notification bar would send to the main system settings menu, but now when you click on it a small window open containing a list of common tasks such as toggling flight mode, adjusting volume or display brightness etc. This quick access setting menu can be directly accessed via swiping from top to bottom with two fingers. Using a single finger will open the normal notification panel.
Android 4.2 for the first time brings with it multi-user support. It means that you can make different profiles on one device, each with its own settings, complete home screen, apps and everything. It just takes a few taps to switch between user profiles, no login- logout procedure is required. This feature is available for Tablets ONLY.
Camera – Photo Sphere Feature:
The update brings with it a new feature for the camera app called Photo Sphere. This feature lets you capture panoramic images. Not just simple panoramic images but interactive, similar to the images which we can see via Google Street View on Google Maps. You start by taking multiple photos in different directions; then Photo Sphere feature then stitches them together into a single cohesive sphere. You can then navigate within the photo viewing it from different angles. It also gives you the option of uploading your taken image on Google Maps for public viewing to.
Key Board – Swipe-Typing:
This feature is old for owners using Samsung devices as they get Swype in built. Though, this would be new for all those owners using stock android OS on their devices. The latest update brings this swiping feature in your stock keyboard, combine that with text-prediction (you get that in 4.1) and you get a pretty powerful keyboard.
Day Dream – Screen Savers:
Screen Savers finally come to Android devices! Android 4.2’s new feature called Day Dream lets you setup stuff which you want to be displayed when your device be it smartphone or tablet is in idle mode. Now only pictures can be displayed but stuff like news headlines can be displayed as well. This would be preferable on devices that are docked at home, as this feature will sap your battery.
Google Now Updated:
Google Now gets integrated with Gmail. It will use your email to automatically pull up cards with things like ongoing flight-tracking information, package-tracking details, hotel reservation status, and entertainment recommendations. This option can be turned on or off whenever you desire. Google Now also integrates with the new Photo Sphere feature as well, which basically suggests locations to take sphere-style photos.
Android 4.2 enables support for a new wireless display-sharing protocol called Miracast: With a Miracast adapter, you can stream audio and/or video directly from your device to any TV. Once connected, the TV will mirror everything happening on your phone or tablet. The adapters will be available soon and are expected to sell for under a hundred bucks; some TVs are also expected to come with integrated support for the protocol in the future.
The Gmail app on 4.2 automatically formats messages to fit horizontally within your screen. It also introduces pinch-to-zoom functionality within emails. Not only that but the Play Store app gets a new personalized music-discovery tool called Music Explorer.
The Jelly Bean 4.2 update will be available on Google’s new Nexus 4 and Nexus 10 Tab on November 13. It is anticipated that the Nexus 7, Galaxy Nexus and Nexus S will get upgraded at the same time only, but no official news for these devices has been announced yet.