google pixel 2 xl in hand running android q beta 2 media playback in notificaitons

Just three weeks after the first Android Q beta dropped, the second was already available to download. And one week after that, we received a beta 2 maintenance release with a handful of important bug fixes.

I’ve been running the second Android Q beta on my Pixel 2 XL since it launched. How stable has Android Q been so far? Should you install it? Read on to find out.

Further reading: How to install Android Q beta 2 on your phone right now

Android Q beta bugs, stability, and battery life

google pixel 2 xl in hand running android q beta 2 volume shortcuts

My time with the second Android Q beta has been so-so. While I appreciate all the little changes Google included in this build, performance and battery issues are keeping me from switching my main SIM card over to my Android Q-running Pixel 2 XL.

Even more Android Q changes

First, the positives. I love all the little usability tweaks in the second beta. You can finally change your different volume profiles without having to leave the app you’re currently using. I listen to podcasts day in and day out, so I’ve also found the progress bar in media control notifications to be quite handy. These two features alone have made me sing the Android Q beta 2 praises.

I’m also really excited to have an app switching system that actually works, and full chat heads support for third-party apps.

The one thing holding me back from switching over to Android Q full time is a bug that prevents me from being able to update any apps in the Play Store. I currently have 27 app updates available and no matter what I do — force close the Play Store, restart my phone, switch to a different network — my apps will just sit as “pending.”

I haven’t noticed a huge difference in battery life from the first to second Android Q beta. I’m still getting about two hours of screen-on time (with plenty of audio streaming throughout the day), which is down from roughly four hours of screen-on time on stable Android 9 Pie.

I am happy to report that my wonky GPS issues from the first Android Q beta have been resolved. I also haven’t noticed any major app crashes or performance hiccups.

Other known issues

Here are some other known issues in the first Android Q developer preview:

  • Users might experience problems with apps that access photos, videos, media, or other files stored on your device, such as when browsing or sharing in social media apps.
  • Banking and finance apps might not work as expected.
  • Google Photos and other apps that work with photos and cameras might be unable to find photos or videos after you update your device to Beta 2. For ways to resolve the issue, see the Google Photos and Camera apps section.
  • System and app performance is known to be periodically slow and janky, and devices may become occasionally unresponsive. These problems may become more acute with prolonged use.

There are many more known issues in this developer preview, which you can find at this link.

Should you give Android Q a shot?

Yes, as long as you have a secondary smartphone.

The second Android Q beta has been stable enough for most everyday tasks, but poor battery life and my Play Store issue are keeping me from switching to it full time. Your mileage will vary of course, but don’t be surprised if you run into any jankiness along the way.

The good news is that you won’t have to wait long for the Android Q beta to be improved. Google is releasing a total of six beta updates between now and the final release in Q3 2019. We’ll update this article again when the third beta arrives in early May.

The official timeline of the Android Q beta rollouts. Google

  • Beta 1 (initial release, beta, March 13, 2019)
  • Beta 2 (incremental update, beta, early April 2019)
  • Beta 3 (incremental update, beta, early May 2019, likely coinciding with Google I/O)
  • Beta 4 (final APIs and official SDK, Play publishing, beta, early June 2019)
  • Beta 5 (release candidate for testing Q3 2019)
  • Beta 6 (release candidate for final testing Q3 2019)
  • Final release to AOSP and ecosystem (Q3 2019)

I want to hear from you. How stable has the second Android Q developer preview been for you? Cast your vote in the poll below, and speak up in the comments if you’ve experienced any bugs or battery life issues.

Next: Android Q beta 2: Everything developers need to know