Android P navigation bar with gestures may have been leaked by Google

By | 13th April 2018
Android P logo

Google today put up a new post on its Android Developers Blog about a Private DNS mode in Android P, but it's the screenshot included with the post that's getting all the attention.

A screenshot shared by Google includes a strange navigation bar arrangement with an empty Back button, a white pill-shaped icon where the Home button normally lives, and no Recent Apps button. What makes this even more interesting is that shortly after the post went live, Google deleted the image and replaced it with one that had its navigation bar and status bar edited out.

Android P gesture navigation bar leak

Also of note is that 9to5Google previously got word that Google has tested a new navigation bar design that removes the Recent Apps button and instead uses a pill-shaped icon that you swipe up on to access multitasking.

Google hasn't commented on what is up with the navigation bar in this screenshot, but there's some speculation that Google might be testing a gesture-based navigation system for Android P. The pill-shaped icon in this screenshot is reminiscent of the gesture icon on the iPhone X, and we know that some Android manufacturers are already interested in adding gestures to their phones. Adding official gesture support with Android P could help make gestures on all Android devices better, but we'll have to wait and see if Google actually goes through with it.

What do you think of navigation gestures? Would you like to see gesture support in Android P?