There is always going to be talk of upcoming releases of Android, and in this case we are taking a look at what we expect to arrive as Android Key Lime Pie. Google has yet to say when they would be making an announcement for Key Lime Pie, however based on previous history, it seems fairly safe to think that talk will happen in May during Google I/O. For those who may not be as familiar with those dates, Google I/O will begin on May 15 and run through May 17.
Kicking things off with the name, Key Lime Pie. While we haven’t seen anything specific saying that Key Lime Pie would be Android 5.0, we have seen the name confirmed by a Google employee. Said employee posted a cartoon drawing showing the evolution of Android over the years and as you can see (below), the robot on the far right is eating a piece of key lime pie. Nothing shocking in that respect, but at least we have a name.
In addition to the confirmation on the name, we also saw details talking about when we could expect Key Lime Pie to be unveiled. These details came by way of Qualcomm. These were not necessarily leaked, but instead details that were published and then later retracted. Basically, Qualcomm had said that Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie would be revealed in the “Spring of 2013.”
With talk of the Key Lime Pie name to the side, lets get into something a bit more fun to talk about — what we expect and what we are hoping to see introduced with Android 5.0 or whatever number they give it. One of the main items we hope to see improved is Google Now. Or maybe a bit more accurate, given the current state and usefulness of Google Now, this is an item we hope to see further improved. Google Now has a decent selection of cards with more being added on a fairly regular basis. You can simply launch Google Now to get the full look at all the cards, and Google also has previews of your cards sitting in the notification drop down shade.
While we don’t have an specific requests for additional card items in Google Now, it seems reasonable to believe Google will add a bit more. If nothing else, it seems Google is using the simple design that we see with Now in other items. In this case, the recent Google Play update (still rolling out) seems to have taken some of those simplicity minded design features.
So, Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie with a simpler overall design and a further improved Google Now. That is not really hoping for much. The fact is, while there is always room for improvement, Jelly Bean was a really nice update and at this point it seems the smaller and incremental changes may be a bit more welcomed. That is, unless you are hoping for something radical. Say, Google going in a crazy direction and having something similar to the recently launched Facebook Home, but based on Google Now and Google+. We sort of hope that doesn’t happen, however it may be interesting to see Google shift from the current UI and offer something based more on widgets and cards.
Whether or not Google decides to take the radical approach, it seems reasonable to expect that we will see some more improvements to the notification bar and drop down with goodies such as additional notification actions. Widgets will likely also see some work, quite possibly further enhancing the lock screen widgets. Then we have Project Butter. There is little room to argue that Google did something good with the release of Android 4.1. And then took things a step further with the release of Android 4.2 in terms of smoothness. Hopefully we see this concept taken further with Android 5.0 (or 4.3 or whatever Google ends up calling Key Lime Pie).
Another item we hope to see is something with backing up. Basically, some sort of backup tool. We need something drop dead simple here. But at the same time, something robust. We look at this given we are moving to a place where people are doing more and more on their phones. If we saw something like this, maybe we could stop hearing those stories about how people always feel the need to start fresh with a new smartphone because they don’t know how to transfer data from old to new. You know, those stories about people losing images are always terrible. Maybe Google could work something up that integrates with Google Drive. And sure, some of this is happening with Google+ already.
Some other items touch on a better and unified messaging experience. Of course, it seems as if we have already begun getting a look at that thanks to the recent Babel related leaks. We may also see a bit more with Google Keep, this was introduced as a note taking system and while it seems to work as intended, there seems to be more that Google could do in order to make it truly useful. Or at the very least, to convince Evernote loyalists to even consider a switch, which is something that has yet to happen.
Finally — improvements to battery life. This is a given as one of the biggest issues always deals with the lack of battery life. Sure, this can be controlled to some extend, but further enhancements here would likely be appreciated by all. We know Google Glass will be a big part of Google I/O, but how will it tie into the next version of Android? All that said, at this point we are a little more than a month away from Google I/O which really just means that we still have time to speculate and hope. So how about it, what are your Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie hopes and dreams?