Android 11 has officially landed, although for most mammals in the world carrying phones, its arrival is still largely theoretical.
You know how it works now, don’t you? Google announces a new and elegant Android version . Send the software to your own self-made Pixel phones more or less immediately . With a few occasional exceptions, most other Android device manufacturers yawn, stretch, and run their normal activities without even recognizing the new version or taking a look at their plans to provide it, and then at some point. A few months and a few hundred days later, I can finally process the work and put it in your hands of your highest paid customers.
Well, this is for customers who have bought a top flagship phone in the last year, anyway. Poor souls who picked up a state-of-the-art phone, even a year earlier, will probably have to wait other months to see the update. And what about those who bought a mid-range or budget device? Oh yes. Luck.
I spoke tired of the insignificant nature of Android updates in these neighborhoods, but today is the time to talk about how you can avoid the indifference of the phone manufacturer, in a sense, and offer you some similar features Android 11 right now, without the need for any official version.
It’s not the same as having the software itself, of course, and it won’t give you improvements important platform level for privacy and other similar areas, but at least it is something and it will definitely add some really useful touches to your rapidly aging device. Even when I arrive Android 11 , you may find that these features are a little better, more powerful, more capable, and more customizable than the software itself offers.
Android 11 # 1 feature: permissions for unique applications
One of the most important additions from Android 11 is its built-in ability to allow you to give an app a unique and limited permission to access your location, camera, or microphone, which means you’ll be able to access that area for that session while you’re using it, but then lose that’s very soon when something else happens.
This is a powerful extra control that you can have and opens the door to smarter and more selective permitting and therefore more confidentiality, as you no longer face an awkward proposal, all or nothing.
Well, good news: this is very easy to play on any version of Android. The key is an incredibly useful little app called Bouncer (which, not coincidentally, is one of my choices for the best Android privacy apps ). Just install the app on your phone and follow the steps to give it the access you need for trading. It will ask you to activate it as an Android accessibility service, which sounds scary, but is legitimately necessary for what the app needs to do.
If you’re worried, keep in mind that Bouncer itself doesn’t require other permissions, including the ability to access the Internet, so it might not do anything suspicious with your data, even if it wanted to. The application also comes from a well-known and renowned Android developer and has an average rating of 4.4 stars with 50,000 installations.
After going through those initial setup screens, Bouncer will automatically do its job in the background – every time another application is given permission, anything permission, Bouncer will add a message to the notifications panel asking if you want to keep that permission. instead, delete it permanently as soon as you exit the app, or delete it at a set time.
Not only does it fit with the unique permission of Android 11, in other words, even really beat , with even more nuances, space and flexibility. It also gives you an easy way to review the app’s permissions at any time and see exactly what permissions it has granted and denied.
The bouncer costs two dollars to use.
Android 2 feature # 2: Notification history
A jewel present quietly, but extremely valuable, which hides in the corners of Android 11, if at all he knows how to look for her , is the new Notifications History section easy to use software . Once activated, it allows you to look back on rejected notifications for up to 24 hours, which is a great option when you inevitably drag something accidentally.
The same basic function can now be added to any Android phone with the help of a small application called FilterBox . Install it and give it the necessary permission to view your notifications (something that the app obviously needs to work on) and bam: so you can get a complete history of the notifications you’ve received and swept. outside.
This app, just like our first article, actually beat which offers the native equivalent of Android 11, allowing you not only clock, but also to interract Yes restore notifications, for example, and also when you save a week completely default notifications (with the option to increase them to 15 or even 30 days, if you prefer). The app also has a robust notification filtering system, which allows you to automatically postpone or cancel certain types of notifications on certain days and times.
However, even if you don’t mess with those more advanced features, it’s worth having Android-11-like notification history.
FilterBox is free for 30 days, after which it requires a one-time payment of $ 4 for continued use. In terms of privacy, the developer is transparent about the fact that the application do what includes a network access permission, but notification details are not always provided; network access is only used for error reporting and analysis and can be completely disabled in the application settings.
Feature No. Android 11 # 3: A screen recorder
With Android 11, Google is finally tackling a long-term bypass in its operating system and giving us a native, built-in screen recording feature (huzzah!). For anyone doing some sort of remote technical assistance or demonstration (enter the strong hand wave here), having such a skill can be invaluable.
And, you guessed it, Really not you need Android 11 to enjoy it. First, many non-Google device manufacturers have already added a screen recording feature to their own custom Android photos. If you’re using a Samsung phone, for example, you should be able to find a «Screen Recorder» option somewhere in the overflowing river of options in Quick Settings – the collection of icons that appears when you swipe down the bottom of the screen twice. .
On any other Android phone, or if you just want to update and extend the feature that is already present on your device, AZ Screen Recorder is the application you need. Brings a simple, easy and impressively powerful screen recording system in any Android environment. And unlike most native screen recording features (including the one in Android 11!), It has its own built-in editing system, which makes it even easier as the pie (or, say, a red velvet cake ) turns the video into an animated loop. GIF.
AZ Screen Recorder is free to use with an optional $ 3 upgrade to remove some creatives from the tool and activate some advanced options.
Android 11 # 4 feature: optimized media player
An Android 11 feature that It seems Trivial on the surface, but what’s actually quite nice is the newly revamped media player of the software, you know, the set of controls that appears in the notification panel area whenever you have some kind of sound. or video playback on the phone.
Android has traditionally treated these players as notifications, which means that you often reach many of them if you move between different media player applications during the day. Starting with Android 11, the entire player is loaded in the quick settings area on your notifications and it becomes a sliding carousel, with each recent set of existing media controls in the same area saving space and reducing congestion.
The same capability can be granted on any phone right now by installing the smart device application Power Shade . Simply grant the app the permissions it asks for the first time you open it, then tap the «Extra» option on the main settings screen and activate the button next to «Cancel system panel».
And with that, you’ll have a new section of custom quick settings, which is very similar to the «standard» version of the Google interface and, yes, includes the Android-11-optimized media player.
Not bad, is it? If you feel adventurous, you can customize all kinds of things about the appearance of the Quick Settings panel in the Power Shade application, from its design, the color and style of the icon to the name of the operator displayed in the corner. But even if you are left with only the default settings of the application, this will be a nice upgrade over the standard settings of the phone’s quick settings, and the new media player will be a welcome addition.
Power Shade is free at the entry level, which includes the Android-11-style media player and many customization options. If you want to unlock all possible features and also remove some ads from the app settings tool, you can make a one-time upgrade of $ 4.50 to the premium version of the app (a price that drops to $ 2.50 if you do in the first days after installing the application).
It may not be implementation official al Android 11, but it is quite close and, like the other items in this collection, it actually has some interesting advantages over the implementation of Google.