Android L finally has a name, and it’s Android 5.0 Lollipop. One day prior to Wednesday’s Google press event that marked the arrival of Android 5.0, the Nexus 6, and the Nexus 9, a couple clues emerged, pointing to 5.0 Lollipop as the new software’s name, and as expected, that’s what Google is calling the so-called “L Release.” What’s in it then for device owners in general?
To give you a brief backgrounder on Android 5.0 Lollipop, the software was first unveiled at the Google I/O tech expo in June, which was also when Google released a developer preview for app makers to tinker around with ahead of the official public launch. Some of the more important changes included on the software include a new, flatter look and feel for the stock Android user experience, comprehensive encryption of personal data, redesigns for several native Google apps, improved battery life, and many others. As expected, Nexus devices will be among the first to receive the software, and with that backdrop out of the way, here’s what you can expect as of the moment.
As an official rule of thumb, Google offers support to its Nexus devices for 18 months after their release, which would make it seem that the Nexus 7 (2012) and Nexus 4 would no longer qualify to be upgraded to Android 5.0 Lollipop. But reports suggest that Google may have changed things up a bit, as the Nexus 7 (2012) and Nexus 4, despite being around two years old, will be receiving future updates to Android 5.0. This could all take place within the coming weeks, as the Nexus 6 and Nexus 9’s release date is set for November 3, but nothing has been made official.
We could also expect speedy updates for the Nexus 7 (2013) and Nexus 5, these being Google’s 2013 Nexus devices, both of which are well within the old 18-month timeframe for Android support. Again, it’s not sure when the software will be available for those devices, but chances are we’ll see these two get Android 5.0 Lollipop updates before the Nexus 7 (2012) and Nexus 4 and non-Nexus devices.
Speaking of non-Nexus devices, Motorola has been quite quick in getting software upgrades out to its device users, much more so than other Android OEMs. Keeping in line with that, the company announced on Wednesday that several of its devices will be getting updates to Android 5.0 at some point in the near future. These devices include the present flagship Moto X (2014) and the original Moto X, both basic Moto G iterations, the Moto G 4G LTE edition, and the company’s budget phone for “everyone,” the Moto E. All these are purely Motorola-branded devices, but the good news is that owners of Verizon co-branded Motorola phones can also expect Android 5.0 Lollipop to be out soon; Motorola’s list also included the Verizon Droid Ultra, Droid Maxx, and Droid Mini from 2013.
The Nexus 9 and the Nexus 6 will be the first devices to ship with Android 5.0 Lollipop, which means we can expect the software’s official release date to take place in or around November 3. That’s the Nexus 9’s exact release date, though there’s a chance the Nexus 6 may be released a bit earlier – so far, Google has only promised a release date “sometime in November” for its new flagship phone.