Android 4.2 Jelly Bean: New Features (Changelog)

October 29, 2012

Google’s labeling Android 4.2 as the new flavor of Jelly Bean. It’s not the Key Lime Pie update we were hoping for, but there are certainly some cool, new features involved. Notable additions include a 360 degree panorama camera feature called Photo Sphere, Gesture Typing, Quick Settings tied to the notification bar, support for multiple user accounts, Miracast wireless display support, and a screensaver mode known simply as Daydream. Read on to learn more about each.

Photo Sphere camera (video demo on Nexus 4)
Up, down and all around you, it’s like no camera you’ve ever seen. With Android 4.2, snap pictures in every direction that come together into incredible, immersive photo spheres that put you right inside the scene. View your photo spheres right on your phone, share them on Google+ with your friends and family, or even add them to Google Maps for the world to see.

Gesture Typing (think Swype!)
Writing messages on the go is easier than ever with Gesture Typing – just glide your finger over the letters you want to type, and lift after each word. You don’t have to worry about spaces because they’re added automatically for you. The keyboard can anticipate and predict the next word, so you can finish entire sentences just by selecting suggested words. Power through your messages like never before.

Multiple User Support
It’s your fully customized tablet. And theirs, too. With support for multiple users, you can give each person their own space. Everyone can have their own homescreen, background, widgets, apps and games – even individual high scores and levels! And since Android is built with multitasking at its core, it’s a snap to switch between users – no need to log in and out. Available only on tablets.

Miracast Wireless Display Support
Android 4.2 allows devices to enable wireless display. You can share movies, YouTube videos, and anything that’s on your screen on an HDTV. Just connect a wireless display adapter to any HDMI-enabled TV to mirror what’s on your screen quickly and easily.

Daydream lets your Android device display useful and delightful information when idle or docked. Show off your photo albums, get the latest news from Google Currents, and more.

Quick Settings Menu
Easily Access frequently used settings from the notification bar, like brightness, battery, airplane mode, screen orientation auto-rotation, Bluetooth and quick toggles for enabling or disabling data/WiFi.

Google Now
Although the following is also available to Android 4.1 users, Google Search received an update today as well. You can “now” access important information in your Gmail at just the right time:

- Flights – get real-time flight status and traffic information to the airport
- Hotels – easily navigate to your hotel when you arrive in a new city
- Restaurant reservations – leave for the restaurant based on live traffic
- Packages – see when your online orders ship

Photo spots – learn of popular photo spots nearby
Favorite movies – be notified when a movie you’re interested is released
Concerts nearby – see when your favorite artists have concerts near you
Stocks – get timely information about stocks you track

There are also new voice actions: launch apps, schedule or check your appointments.

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