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Android 12 Beta 3 Adds Improved Face-Based Auto-Rotatation, More

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Google today released the Android 12 Beta 3, and it brings a few new features to the table, including the long-awaited scrolling screenshots, smarter autorotation, and more.

According to a new Android blog post, Google is introducing a new scrollable screenshots tool, and on-device search gets a big improvement when it comes to finding information inside third-party apps.

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Google also said it improved auto-rotation by using the front-facing camera to determine which direction the screen should be rotated.

Per Google’s update notes:

We’ve enhanced Android’s auto-rotate feature with face detection, using the front-facing camera to more accurately recognize when to rotate the screen. This is especially helpful for people who are using their devices while lying down on a couch or in bed, for example.

The company says the face-tracking feature is opt-in, and notes that it uses Android’s new Private Compute Core, so “images are never stored or sent off the device.” The feature currently only works on the Pixel 4 and Later.

Newer Pixel devices aside, the company says it’s also optimized the rotation animation and is using a machine learning gesture detection algorithm. Google claims this should lead to 25 percent reduced latency when rotating your phone for all devices running Android 12, while devices that support face detection should be even more reliable.

The latest crop of features aren’t the only noteworthy changes Android phones and tablets will get when Google officially releases Android 12 in the next month or two. A new Privacy Dashboard gives you a minute-by-minute look at which apps are accessing your private data. There are also system alerts that now let you know when an app is actively using your camera or microphone, and with a tap of a button, you can revoke access.

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