Android N is set to bring new desktop style floating windows to smartphones and tablets, already seen in the preview, which has now been shown off officially with a task bar.
The SVP of Android, Chrome OS and Play, Hiroshi Lockheimer tweeted a photo of what appears to be Android N displayed in floating window mode.
At its most basic this mode is similar to multi-tasking except rather than layering the windows they can be moved about and resized. The advantage of this should be easier multitasking and, ultimately, a more desktop like experience on mobile devices.
Previously, in previews, the floating windows were shown on a wallpaper background. The latest photo reveals that there may also be an icon bar at the bottom, similar to Windows. This appears to have a search icon then apps that are open. Tapping these should bring them to the top or shrink them, presumably. There also appears to be status icons, like Wi-Fi, time, profile and more at the bottom right.
The photo was a screenshot so it's difficult to know if this is tablet, phone or even output to a monitor. What has been made clear from the preview is that this mode will support a mouse cursor. Add in a keyboard and we could be looking at a fully functional computer mode all from an Android device.
Google has said that the final version on Android N will be available by the summer. Don't expect it to arrive until later in the year, around October, when Nexus devices should get it first.
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