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Portal app brings Paranoid Android's Halo multitasking feature to everyone

The new Portal beta app brings Paranoid Android style Halo multitasking to virtually every Android device, and it's now available for download from the Google Play Store.
August 14, 2013
Portal multitasking on Android

As a big fan of Paranoid Android’s Halo multitasking feature, it brings me great pleasure to inform you that the feature is now available to a much wider audience.

After the PA team made their code open source, other developers have been working away to port Halo over to other systems. Portal is one such attempt that is now available on the Play Store, successfully bringing over these multitasking features for everyone to enjoy. Best of all, there’s no need for a custom ROM any more, or even root permissions.

Just like the original Halo feature, Portal will display your recent notifications in a little bubble which constantly floats on your screen. Clicking on the circle will also grant users access to their text messages, Facebook updates, Twitter account, and allow them to browse the internet, all without closing any of the other apps that are running in the background.

Portal vs Halo multitasking
Portal looks virtually identical to Halo on your home-screen, but the multitasking works in a slightly different way. Portal in the middle, Halo on the right.

But there are some differences between these two implementations, mostly in the look and layout. Although portal will display notifications from any app, it won’t let you launch any app like Halo does, at least not yet anyway. But since it’s only in the beta stage, the developer states that more work is being done to refine the experience.

Overall, the original Paranoid Android Halo feature feels a tad more complete, but this is an excellent start to bring multitasking functionality to all Android devices. It’s certainly worth checking out, especially considering that it’s free, so head on over to the Play Store page and try out Portal for yourself. Oh, and here’s a look at how to use the app too.