Android N developer preview 2 reveals launcher shortcuts, new emojis

Google announced Android N Developer Preview 2 today, revealing some new features within the highly-anticipated update and fixing bugs found by developers who participated in the first preview, which launched last month.

Among the new features is a deep-linking tool titled Launcher Shortcuts. This allows developers to create shortcuts to a specific area or action in a given app. For instance, in a mapping app, it could take the user directly to directions for how to get home, making their interaction with the app more efficient.

A new emoji design style is being introduced with Google moving to a “more human-looking design.” The update also offers a wide range of skin tones and introduces some new Unicode 9 edition emojis, including bacon, selfie and face-palm.

Also among the new features is Vulkan, a 3D rendering API that the company helped to build as a member of Khronos, a non-profit group dedicated to the creation of open and free programming interfaces. Vulkan provides developers with low-overhead graphics processing control, reducing the stress put on a device by intense draw-calls (in which many objects are being drawn to the screen at once).

In addition to those added features, Google noted that it has changed some of its API after refining features such as multi-window support, and fixed several bugs brought to its attentions by the developers.

Related reading: Google aims to make Android phones more accessible

[source]Android Developers Blog[/source]