Google has just released their Quick Start Guide to Android 6.0 Marshmallow on the Google Play Store. If you’re eager to get a view of what’s in store with this highly anticipated update, you’ve got 60+ pages to pore over, and it won’t even cost you a dime.
Those looking for world-changing interface innovations might come away a bit disappointed. Most Android users will already be familiar with most of the things outlined in this document (it is a Quick Start Guide for beginners, after all), but it does outline one of Marshmallow’s most interesting features: Now On Tap.
Now On Tap is a pretty natural extension of the Google Now app. The main idea behind Google Now is to provide users with content before they actively search for it. Google Now tracks patterns of use and anticipates your needs for, say, navigation back home, the location of your parked car, and whether or not you should bring an umbrella before leaving the house.
Now On Tap takes this concept slightly further by providing context-specific content while you’re in the middle of using an app. The example given in the quick start guide depicts a user receiving an email suggesting a meeting at the zoo at 11:00 AM the following day. A Now On Tap suggestion asks the user if they would like to make a calendar event for that time and place. Pretty cool.
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Aside from that, the Quick Start guide gives new users an overview of basic features like logging in with their Google account and modifying settings. It also talks up some of the other boons Marshmallow promises to bring including more efficient memory use and longer battery life.
If you’re curious, hop on over to the Google Play store, grab your copy of the Quick Start guide, and settle into a musky leather armchair with a pipe in front of a crackling fire.