The first Android 12 beta is available for recent Pixel phones now!

Android 12 stock photo 1

Credit: Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority
  • Today, Google is pushing out the first Android 12 beta to its most recent Pixel smartphones.
  • The first beta comes with a wild new look for Android as well as many fixes and new features not seen in previous developer previews.
  • This is still beta software, though, so install it at your own risk.

Today, during the Google I/O 2021 keynote, the company took the wraps off the next iteration of Android 12. To be frank, it’s a wild re-imagining of the operating system that could prove to be quite polarizing.

The good news is that, if you want to give it a shot, you can install the first Android 12 beta now on your Pixel phone. You’ll need the Pixel 3/3XLPixel 3a/3a XLPixel 4/4 XLPixel 4a/4a 5G, or Pixel 5 to install it. Don’t own a Pixel? Consult our roundup of other offerings for individual OEMs here.

Related: Android 12 features: Everything confirmed and rumored so far

Keep in mind that this is still beta software and will inevitably have bugs and missing features. It is stable enough for general use, but it might be best to wait a few more months if your Pixel phone is your exclusive daily driver.

First Android 12 beta: What’s new?

Android 12 Screens

Credit: Google

The two biggest updates with this first beta are the overall look of Android and enhancements to privacy and security controls.

First, the Android operating system received its biggest visual overhaul in years. The lock screen, notification shade, app drawer, widgets, settings pages, and many more look completely different than they do on Android 11. The first Android 12 beta also introduces new animations and transitions.

The biggest aesthetic change, though, is a new feature called color extraction. This feature automatically chooses a color palette for your device by scanning your phone’s wallpaper. This creates a seamless and consistent visual experience throughout the entire operating system.

Related: The history of Android: The evolution of the biggest mobile OS in the world

Moving along to privacy and security, Google is introducing a new Privacy Dashboard. Similar to the Digital Wellbeing dashboard, this new feature gives you an all-at-once glance at which of your apps are using which permissions.

Additionally, Google is introducing privacy-focused Quick Tiles. With the tap of a tile, you can shut off all access to your camera and/or microphone. This is perfect for when you are in a sensitive meeting, doctor’s appointment, or other applicable situation.

To get started with the first Android 12 beta, check out our guide on how to install it here.

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