Android 6 Marshmallow for Xperia Z3, Z3 Compact and Z3 Tablet
Google recently released Android Marshmallow operating system on September 29th and also uploaded to AOSP on October 5th. Sony updated the Xperia Z3 series to Android 5.0 Lollipop a few months ago. Currently Sony pushing out the Android 5.1.1 Lollipop update to Xperia Z3, Z3 Tablet and Z3 compact. Sony will have to update the Xperia Z3 series along with Xperia Z3+ and Xperia Z5 to Android Marshmallow. Previously Sony pushed out the Lollipop update for Xperia Z3 series later than announced release dates. But this time the Japanese tech giant may release the Android M update for the Xperia Z3 series on time. According to tech analysts, Sony may release the new Android 6.0 Marshmallow update to Xperia Z3 in December 2015. Xperia Z3 Tablet and Z3 Compact may get the Android 6.0 update in January 2016. It seems to be a long time to wait but custom roms based on Android Marshmallow will be available for Xperia Z3 in October. The Japanese tech giant already released binary files of Marshmallow for Xperia Z3 series for custom rom developers.
Android Marshmallow Exclusive Features
At the Google I/O 2015, VP of Engineering David Burke explained some of the new features of the Android Marshmallow Operating System.
1. App Permissions :
This Feature of Android M has been speculating for many days and now the full details revealed. With Android M users can use individual permissions to allow or deny apps. Google has simplified the permissions feature in Android M. In Android M, permission request will appear when the app requires that particular permission and not at the time of installation. For Example, Whatsapp will request one time permission request to use mic, when we tap on record voice message icon. So users can decide to give permission to use it or not while using apps. When users want to change or view the permission setting for any app later, they can do that in the Settings. So android m is giving full control over apps to users through permissions. This is a noble feature of Android M. Google may further develop this feature in future android versions.
2. Web Experience:
Google improved the way of displaying web sites to users in order to provide better web experience while using apps and internet. A new feature named as Chrome Custom Tabs introduced in Android M. When users tough a link in an app, the link will open in customized chrome tab at top of window without opening the chrome app separately. So users can interact in a better way between apps and websites with Custom chrome tabs. Chrome Custom Tabs supports the features automatic sign-in, saved passwords, auto fill, and multi-process security also to deliver integration of the app and web experience.
3. Fingerprint support :
High-end smart phones like Galaxy S6 have in built Fingerprint sensor without requiring any external hardware. But till now fingerprint sensor is only useful to unlock the device. Google now extended the use of Fingerprint sensor in Android M to make purchases through online shopping and playstore. Currently these features are only useful in high-end devices but in future more mobiles come with fingerprint sensor and at that time these features will be more useful. As Xperia Z3 series comes with no fingerprint sensor this feature of Android Marshmallow is useless for Xperia Z3 series users.
4. Android Pay Mobile Payments :
Google is going introduce Android Pay service in Android M OS. Android Pay allows users to make purchases with credit cards more than 700,000 stores in the US. Android Pay is compatible with any device which has NFC capabilities. The Android Pay already being supported by American Express, Visa, MasterCard, and Discover, as well as carriers such as AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile. Google aimed to make Android Pay better than Apple Pay. So we will see further improvements in Android Pay in near future.
5. Better App link management :
In all Android operating systems before Android M, when users clicks on a link in an app, dialog box opens and asks to open via browser or other supported app. For example, when users click on YouTube link, a prompt will appear to open it through YouTube app or Web browser. In Android M, Google improved the management of app links to provide better user experience while using apps. In Android M, app links open through appropriate apps without again prompting users. In the above example YouTube link will open through YouTube app directly in Android M when users click on YouTube link. So, users can feel more comfortable and friendly with better app link management in Android M.
In Android M, the tech giant introduced a new battery saving function named as Doze. With motion sensors, Doze recognizes automatically position of device and usage of device. So Doze recognizes whether the user asleep or kept in a table and saves battery according to the needs. In Doze mode also, alarms will work and priority notifications will appear. According to Burke, they have tested two Nexus 9 devices, one running on Android M preview and one running on Lollipop. The device running on Android M preview gives two times more standby time than the device running on Lollipop. Android M also supports new USB Type-C ports which allow greater amperage and fast charge the device. Users can also charge other device with these USB Type-C ports. Android M manage better these ports. As Xperia Z3 series don’t have these ports, this support of Marshmallow is useless for Xperia Z3 series users.
7. Automatic Backup and Restore :
All previous android versions have no support for automatic backup and restore of apps and app data. Now Google implemented this useful feature in the upcoming Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS. Marshmallow will automatically backup the apps and app data to Google drive. There is a limit of 25MB per app and the backups won’t count against Drive space limits and are encrypted also. Users can restore these backups when factory reset the device or to a new device. More details about automatic app backup and restore will be revealed in coming days.
8. System UI Tuner :
Marshmallow has another exclusive feature to better manage quick settings toggles and status bar icons. With this new System UI Tuner feature users can show battery percentage embedded in the battery icon in the status bar. Users can also remove and add tiles in Quick Settings menu. It also facilitates to manage Status bar notifications better. More details about this useful feature will be revealed in coming days.
Android 6.0 Marshmallow brought new app menu design which deviates from previous Android versions. Upto Android Lollipop all Android versions feature horizontally scrollable app menu. But in Marshmallow Google introduced vertical app menu. The App Menu appears much smooth and fast than previous app menus. Search bar also comes with new app menu. So users can type in the search bar at the top of app menu to find required app. Users can easily find the required with search function in the new app menu. The Marshmallow app menu also provides the list of recent of on the top of the menu. So users can easily launch recently used apps. Google may improve this new app menu in the next update to Marshmallow.
10. App Standby :
Previously with Android Lollipop, Google brought an amazing feature to disable inbuilt apps. Now a new intelligent app standby feature comes with Android Marshmallow. App standby feature identifies ideal apps which haven’t been used for a long time and automatically disables them. So apps in standby mode don’t use network data for automatic syncs. They also don’t drink battery juice and don’t show any notifications. But if user plugged in the charger for charging then they will run in background and complete data syncs. Marshmallow users can view which apps under standby mode by going to Settings>Developer Options> Inactive Apps. Users can also customize the app standby feature in this screen. Users can disable app standby mode for any apps and can enable it.
Latest flagship phones from tech giants don’t feature microSD slot. It seems that tech giants like Samsung are following the Apple iphone and Google Nexus way. So only some mid-range devices, some old flagships and Sony flagships have microSD slot. Android Marshmallow has a new feature for phones which have microSD slot. Marshmallow can format external memory card and combine to internal storage so that users can use it to install apps and app data. Previous Android versions support this with only on rooting but Marshmallow can combine internal storage and external storage natively with out rooting. This combined storage is termed as Flex storage. But slower memory cards may trigger a low speed warning. Only UHS memory cards may compatible fully with internal storage.
12. Improved Android Run Time (ART)
Previously Google introduced the Android Run Time Feature for first time in Android 4.4 KitKat as optional in developer options. In Android 5.0 Lollipop, Android Run Time comes as Default setting instead of Dalvik cache to improve performance and reduce Ram usage. Google claims that they have improved the ART feature much in Android 6.0 Marshmallow. They said that they have optimized the power consumption of device and Ram use through Android Run Time. Overall improved ART of Marshmallow will improve the performance of the device and also decreases battery consumption. Google may improve this remarkable feature much in further updates to Marshmallow like Android 6.1.
13. Verified Boot :
Verified Boot is a security feature which was introduced back in Android 4.4 KitKat. It is used to protect the device through dm-verity against persistent rootkits. Google improved it in previous Android 5.0 Lollipop and current Android 6.0 Marshmallow. The latest Nexus 5X and 6P devices which are running on Marshmallow are showing some warning at the time of boot, if user unlocked the boot loader. According to Google, the Yellow warning refers that the devices is using operating system other than the one which came with device originally. Orange Warning comes up when user unlocked the boot loader. Read warning will come when the device using another operating system or it corrupted and when not safe to use. So user can know about the risk before the phone completing the boot process.
Google improved the volume controls in Marshmallow better than Lollipop. So when user click on volume up or down buttons, a volume settings box will appear on screen. This box let users to change media volume, ring volume and alarm volume independently. To set in vibrate user have to tap on the Bell icon in this screen. So Android 6.0 Marshmallow volume controls are much better than Android 5.0 Lollipop. In Marshmallow there is no need to go into Settings menu to change volume controls independently. As said above the customized Volume control screen will appear as soon as user touches Volume up or down buttons. Actually Windows Phone adapted this setting a few generations ago and now Android got this.
Google introduced priority notifications in Lollipop and now introduced a special feature named as Do Not Disturb in Marshmallow. Do not disturb is an improvement to Android 5.0 Lollipop priority Notifications. Through Do Not Disturb, users can set different silent modes according to their need. Users can access Do Not Disturb feature in Quick Settings toggles directly from the Marshmallow home screen. In that three modes will appear : Total Silence, Alarms Only and Priority only. Users can set any mode for a few hours. More customization will be available for Do Not Disturb through the More Settings button at the bottom. Google may improve Do Not Disturb feature in the next updates.
Update on 14/9/2015 :
Google has setup a launch event at San Francisco on September 29th to unveil the upcoming Android 6.0 Marshmallow operatung system. The search giant will unveil LG Nexus 5X and Huawei Nexus devices with inbuilt Android M OS on the same day. Some Old nexus devices like Motorola Nexus 6 will get the update earlier than Sony devices. Exact rollout dates of Android Marshmallow for Xperia Z3, Z3 Compact and Z3 Tablet will be revealed in coming days. According to a latest report, it had been confirmed that Android 6 is coming without the dark theme option which was present in Developer preview One. Google may implement it in further updates to Marshmallow.
Update on 17/9/2015 :
Google updated the Google App with Now on Tap and Marshmallow UI. The app is currently available in playstore for download and requires Android 4.4+ to work perfectly. But new features of the app works only with Android Marshmallow developer preview 3 and not with earlier versions. The Now on Tap functionality improves user experience. Users can search useful information without leaving the current app with Now on Tap function. New Google app will come inbuilt with Marshmallow update and then more details about the app will be revealed. You can see the new Marshmallow launcher below.
Google invited press for the event on September 29th to unveil the Marshmallow operating system and two new Nexus devices. It has already been confirmed that the version number of Android Marshmallow is 6.0. The event will begin at 9 A.M. Pacific time in San Francisco. Some analysts are saying that Google may unveil an update to chromecast also. So more interesting details about the Android 6.0 Marshmallow opersting system will be revealed n September 29th.
Update on 4/10/2015 :
Google has released Marshmallow operating system on September 29th. The Nexus 5X made by LG and Nexus 5P made by Huawei was also unveiled in the event. These two new Nexus devices run on the Marshmallow operating system. Google is going to push out the Android 6.0 Marshmallow to AOSP on Monday, October 5th. So Sony will start building the Marshmallow update for Xperia Z3 series in the next week. The binary files of Marshmallow for Xperia Z3, Xperia Z3 Compact and Xperia Z3 Tablet devices may be available on Sony’s Website at the end of the next week. Custom rom builders can build Android 6.0 Marshmallow roms for Xperia Z3 series after Sony released the binary images.
Update on 8/10/2015 :
Google pushed out the Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS to AOSP on October 5th. Sony officially announced that Xperia Z3, Xperia Z3 Compact and Z3 Tablet Compact will get Marshmallow update and they will come back soon about the progress of the update. Sony also invited 10,000 users of the Xperia Z3 series in some countries of Europe to test builds of Marshmallow. So it seems that the Japanese tech giant may quickly rollout Marshmallow update unlike earlier Lollipop update.
Update on 13/10/2015 :
Sony released binary images of Android 6.0 Marshmallow for some high-end Xperia devices. Currently Marshmallow binary files are available for Xperia Z5, Xperia Z5 Compact, Xperia Z3+, Xperia Z4 Tablet, Xperia Z3, Xperia Z3 Compact, Z3 Tablet Compact, Xperia Z2, Xperia Z2 Tablet, Xperia Z1, Xperia Z1 Compact, Xperia Z Ultra, Xperia Z, ZL, Xperia Tablet Z devices. So custom rom developers can download from this Sony’s AOSP page and build rom for the above devices.
Update on 14/11/2015 :
Sony released the test images of Marshmallow for Xperia Z3 series users a few weeks ago. The Japanese tech giant also released binary files of Marshmallow for some Xperia Z series devices. But till now there is no official word from Sony about the rollout dates of Marshmallow. They are still saying that they will come back soon. Now according to some reports, Sony is going to finalize the building of Android 6.0 update for Xperia devices and may start the rollout process soon.
As we said earlier, Xperia Z5 series devices will first get the Android 6.0 Marshmallow update. Then Xperia Z3+ and Xperia Z3 devices will receive the update Xperia Z4 Tablet, Xperia Z2 and Xperia Z2 Tablet devices may receive the Android 6.0 update later. So Xperia Z3 users can download the update once the update notification appeared. Xperia Z3 users can also check for updates manually by going into Settings > About phone > Software updates > System updates. Users are recommended to use strong Wi-Fi are Strong Mobile network to download the update quickly. We will update this article as Sony announced the rollout of Android 6.0 Marshmallow to Xperia Z3 series.
Update on 7/12/2015 :
Google released the factory images of Android 6.0.1 update for some Nexus devices. The Official Nexus factory Images page is showing that Android 6.0.1 is now available for Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, Nexus 6, Nexus 5, Nexus 9 and Nexus Player devices. Some users already started receiving the update through OTA also. As the OTA rollout proceeds in phases, some users may have to wait some time to download the Android 6.0.1 update. This update carries new emoji icons for Nexus devices as revealed some earlier leaks. Android 6.0.1 brings quick Camera launch for Nexus 5, 6, 7 (2013), 9 and Player devices. With this feature users can launch Camera app just by clicking the power button twice. This feature already available in the latest Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P devices. The Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow update also includes some bug fixes and minor improvements. Actually Google released Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow for Android One devices in November.
Sony is still running the Test Drive of Android 6.0 Marshmallow for some Xperia Z3 devices in some regions. As the final rollout hasn’t started yet, The Japanese tech giant may add Android 6.0.1 improvements and bug fixes to the final update. But Sony hasn’t confirmed about Android 6.0.1 yet, we have to wait until the Sony confirmed it.
Update on 13/12/2015 :
The clock in the devices which have installed Android 6.0 is running slowly according to some users. On some Nexus devices, the clock is running slowly by about 30 mins. This time difference shows large effect on Alarms and event reminders from Calender. But Google has fixed this bug in the latest Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow update. So after updating to Android 6.0.1, the clock in the Nexus devices is running correctly. So Sony may include this fix in the Marshmallow updates before the rollout.