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Introducing Paranoid Android’s Halo 2.0

Paranoid Android has released the first public preview of its updated Halo 2.0 multitasking feature, which now displays the full notification rather than just text.
August 19, 2013
Paranoid Android 3 halo

Paranoid Android’s Halo multitasking feature has received its fair share of praise for being such an innovative feature, and it even has copycat apps aiming to imitate its functionality. For those unfamiliar with it, Halo is essentially a floating button that displays the latest notifications received by your phone. On top of that, it also allows users to open up new windows to quickly respond to notifications, and it can launch pinned apps without exiting current applications.

It wasn’t that long ago that we had our first look at the Halo beta, but the team has already released an updated version 2.0. The premise is pretty much the same, but the updated version now shows the full notification, rather than just text. This means that notification bar apps, such as music players and power toggles, can now be used directly from Halo without having to launch the app. The development team has also implemented multi-touch, so you can interact with these notifications whilst carrying on with whatever you’re doing.

This could also have interesting implications for unique plug-ins and apps which make use of this feature, but we’ll have to wait and see what developers can come up with. There are also a few other tweaks in Halo 2.0, including the option to use a floating window for multitasking, OTA bug fixes, and several other optimizations.

Here’s a video of Halo 2.0 in actions, it looks pretty darn slick.

Currently the new Halo version has only been tested on a Nexus 4, but the code is available for the maintainers of other handsets to update. Halo 2.0 is included as part of the PA 3.97 update, so the update should be heading out to your device over the next couple of days, if your handset hasn’t been updated already.

Paranoid Android has certainly made multitasking on my smartphone a lot easier, and I can’t wait to try Halo 2.0 out for myself. To see if your device has been updated, don’t forget to check out this download page.