Android N’s seamless updates will not be implemented on current-gen Nexus devices
Google didn’t really go into as much detail about Android N as we’d have liked during its big I/O 2016 keynote, leaving the dessert name decision (partially) up to us, only hinting at the version number, and vaguely bringing up performance, productivity and security improvements developers can sample and help shape up in the latest OS preview.
But one of the arguably coolest new features is unavailable for beta tests just yet, as it concerns the often lengthy and burdensome update process. In short, the goal is to make applying patches, especially small maintenance ones, easier and faster than today, when you’re asked to reboot your device every single time its platform needs tending to, then wait patiently as the previously downloaded system file is installed.
With “seamless update” functionality, Android N phones and tablets will finally be able to both download and install a security or even major version update in the background, requiring a restart only to quickly enforce the changes.
The way this works, according to Android Police, is build N splits your software in two separate partitions, pulling updates first in the backup one, then seamlessly move it to the forefront once you reboot.
It’s a neat trick borrowed from Chrome OS, but unfortunately, enabling it on devices currently running Marshmallow or Lollipop is too complicated and could put you at risk rather than improve update convenience.
As such, it’s “exceedingly unlikely” these seamless updates will be brought to any existing Androids, including Nexus family members, needing a full repartition of a phone or tablet and yielding more prospective issues than benefits. Bottom line, this is a feature that will almost certainly be kept exclusive to gadgets released with Android N pre-loaded. Better than nothing, right?
Source: Android Police