Half the fun of using beta software is seeing what you can break.
Android P is still a long way from being final. It's part of Google's Android Beta Program, which lets users with specific devices try Developer Preview software for Android phones and watches. All of this means that Android P in its current form just isn't ready for production use and Google wants you to know it.
Be sure to back up your Android phone before installing beta software. The updates that you'll receive as a part of this program are pre-release versions, and may contain errors and defects that can affect normal functioning of your device.
We all cool? Good.
Google gets valuable feedback by letting enthusiasts with certain phones try to break stuff. Google engineers are pretty good at breaking stuff, but enthusiasts are really good at it. Way better than any professional could be because we do lots of crazy things the software that pros would never think about. We're like the chimpanzee astronauts who do the real testing. And it's great to be a chimpanzee with all the new goodies in our hands, especially now that its open to phones from other manufacturers!
So far, the early beta isn't looking terrible when it comes to bugs. I've spent a few days scouring the 'net to see what's good and what's not with the P beta, and have found that almost everything users are saying is broken is on the official bug tracker and has a developer assigned to fix it. There are a few showstoppers but not as many as I expected. Good job, G!
Here's what's happening as of late May 2018:
- Day and date font in home screen widget is dynamic and can change size. Temperature font in the same widget is not.
- Volume sliders on Bluetooth headsets don't synchronize with system volume slider.
- Bluetooth devices do not unpair automatically.
- Status bar icons overlap while in a call.
- Black gradient above the status bar while in portrait mode.
- Can't adjust ringer volume outside of phone app.
- App intents that are directed to any settings entry are broken. They return the user to main settings page instead of the app that called the intent.
- Play Store crashes when multiple users are signed into the same device.
- Tethering causes an fstat system call error.
- Apps crash when the main activity is recreated (example — refresh app after color change).
- DnD setting for "Listed contacts only" also allows unknown and blocked numbers.
- Settings app crashes when using settings search.
- Swipe up gesture will cause multitasking window to freeze if done very slowly.
- Transition animations can become stuck when zoomed in.
Some of these bugs are self-explanatory, and some totally code geek level. The smaller issues are mostly cosmetic and aren't anything that should keep you from trying the beta out if you happen to have an extra phone. But there are a few bigger issues that might change your mind.
I've tried to recreate these bugs on my Pixel 2 and can see most of them. That's good news because it means troubleshooting won't take some serious detective work. One of them is a complete showstopper that means I can't use the beta on a phone I need to depend on — the animation zoom bug.
My Pixel 2 on Project Fi gets the zoom bug every single time a phone call comes in. I can't answer because the controls aren't there and have to let it ring until I can check the call log and call the person back.
The two bigger issues from a platform point of view are the intents bug and the activity recreation crash. Those are ways developers use Android inside of the apps they are building, and if the apps don't work the platform suffers. Those are probably getting the most attention. All the bugs are important, but there's a logical order of importance here and the application platform gets first dibs.
I know plenty of other people are seeing some bugs, maybe these or others that aren't listed. If you're trying Android P and seeing things that are off-kilter, jump into the comments and let everyone know what you're seeing and on what phone.
To file an official bug report, look here for the right place to talk about your particular device.
Note: This post will be continually updated throughout the Android P beta and after the final software is released.