Google launched the Nexus 4 smartphone, Nexus 7 HSPA+ 7″ tablet and the Nexus 10 10″ tablet earlier this week with the Android 4.2 Jelly Bean OS. Needless to say all the 3 new products were sold out like hot cakes within a few hours of launch. Subsequently, Google started rolling out the Android 4.2 Jelly Bean OTA update to the Nexus family of devices. My Nexus 7 got the update yesterday and my Galaxy Nexus phone got the update today. Here is a quick and simple peek into what has changed with Jelly Bean 4.2 and what I feel about the update…
Multi-User Support: This is something that I haven’t seen till now in mobile devices. Right now, it is available only on tablets and lets you create multiple user accounts with a separate home screen, apps etc. So you and your partner/friend can share a tablet and still keep the data separate.
Photo Sphere Camera: This is the BEST features of this update. Using this you can very easily capture a panoramic shot covering 360 degrees. Now you don’t need an SLR camera or take a shot from a long distance to cover all the 100 people that attended your birthday party in a single picture. I will try to post some pictures taken using the feature soon..
Gesture (swipe) Typing: This feature looks very cool but am not sure about its usability. I was able to type much faster using the traditional method on my tablet than with gesture typing. It is better suited for phones than tablets. Also, it might be useful for those that cannot use their both hands to type.
Performance: The previous version of Jelly Bean itself was pretty slick. This version has just raised the bar. The devices have become even slicker with the update that can be very easily noticed.
Lock Screen Widgets: You can create multiple lock screen widgets to display useful information while the screen is locked. Photos, Email, News etc can be placed here. The email lock screen widget shows you a preview of the message that helps you determine whether or not to unlock to device to read it.
Mini Settings from Notification bar: The most commonly used settings can be simply reached from the notification bar instead of needing to go to the Settings app. This is a useful feature update.
Miscellaneous: There is a new clock app, improved and optimized UI around the OS, clear demarcation of the permissions required while downloading new apps/updates from Google Play etc.
Note: This post is just my experience of playing around with the Jelly Bean 4.2 update for a few hours. There could be a lot more features that I have not tired yet. For more information on the update, please go here.