Google introduced a new Android logo and added AI to the ‘At a Glance’ widget

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While we await the stable release of Android 14, Google has decided to grace its users with an updated logo for the upcoming Android brand. The operating system has been given a facelift and the company is bringing some new features on the occasion. They include AI improvements to the At a Glance widget and Lookout, one of Android’s accessibility tools. You can upload a library card to your Google Wallet and take more conference calls in the car.

Android rebrands

The beauty of Android and how it wants to present itself as a platform has been evolving over the years. It must have finally found its form. Google has officially rebranded Android with a new look and improvements to the iconic green Android icon. The logo has been updated so that Android is now present with a capital “A”, which Google says makes the letter stand out more than the rest of the alphabet. The new logo has “more curves” and “personality”; Google also shows how the brand new “Android” logo sits on top of the Google logo, suggesting an integration between the original brand and the mobile platform that hasn’t been present for some time.

Fortunately, Google hasn’t done away with Android’s longtime mascot, Bug Droid. The Android robot is more three-dimensional than ever, and the logo is back to showing its entire body instead of its head, as it has been for years. If you want to read the full story behind the new look, you can check out Google’s post.

Android’s AI-enhanced improvements

The new At a Glance should be more prominent on the home screen.

To commemorate this new look for Android, Google is adding some new features, and it doesn’t seem to be exclusive to Pixel smartphone users. The new At a Glance widget will feature more prominent iconography and an additional info line. The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra is a flagship smartphone featuring Samsung’s OneUI-style icons in the home row.

I saw how useful at-a-glance can be while flying last week — it’s so helpful to have the details you need when you’re rushing to get somewhere. But I miss it at the top of my home screen because it’s not that different. This new tweak will make this feature more prominent on the home screen, to the point. Google wants you to put its AI improvements to work in plain sight.

Android users who are visually impaired and rely on apps like Lookout for Assistance are also getting a hefty update starting today. Image on AI Lookout will help the Q&A feature create a more detailed description of what’s next or on the screen. Once you input your image, you can ask questions via text or voice to understand the context of the image. Lookout also adds 11 new languages ​​to its repertoire, including Japanese, Korean and Chinese. It now supports 24 languages.

Library Card in Google Wallet

Granted, I don’t have a library account. I use my daughter’s card for everything from checking out books in person to getting audiobooks from Libby. But it’s inconvenient when I don’t have her card with me, especially when she needs an impromptu trip to buy new books.

This latest feature drop lets you digitize passes with barcodes or QR codes that only work in certain settings, including library cards and gym passes. All you need to do is take an image of the pass to store the wallet.

A few more things

Android Auto users, I understand having to take a conference call in the car when you’re stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic. This does not change the fact that we need better infrastructure so that we don’t have to deal with such things while behind the wheel. But at the very least, Android Auto can now handle both Webex and Zoom calls natively, so you can use the big screen in your car to manage calls instead of sticking to the phone’s tiny screen.

Those using Fitbit and Google Fit can now hear your sleep results as part of your daily wake-up call with Assistant.

The new Android look will start popping up in future software updates and phone releases. And the new features should start rolling out to everyone this week.

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