Samsung Begins Rollout of Android 7.0 Nougat

The Galaxy Note 7 might not me no more, but Samsung is still supporting its other flagships in earnest. Today, the company is rolling out Android 7.0 Nougat to the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, coupling Google’s latest software improvements with a dash of TouchWiz design. The biggest changes can be found in the notification tray — swipe down and you’ll notice that the Quick Panel interface looks cleaner than before, with titles removed from each icon. The “second depth,” opened with a subsequent downward swipe, has been reworked too with grouped icons. Notifications have also been bundled for easier sorting, and now support direct replies.

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Samsung’s devices have long offered split-screen apps, but with Nougat that feature now becomes standard (provided your apps support it, that is). With the new over-the-air update, Samsung has reworked the on-screen mechanism used to adjust the size of each window. There’s also a “pop-up window” mode that can run up to five app at once. Along with the regular split-screen mode, that’s a new maximum of seven apps. Quite why you would want to run that many simultaneously is beyond me (how much would you see on a smartphone screen?) but hey, the option’s there now.

Rounding out the new additions is Samsung Pass, a fingerprint-activated key for website logins, and a new Performance Mode that lets you activate various battery saving options. These include a best-of-all-worlds Optimized Mode, which promises to improve your phone’s stamina and speed, and Entertainment Mode, which boosts sound and image quality for your favorite movies and TV shows. While not the most exciting update, it does ensure that Samsung’s best phones are competitive from a software standpoint. That’s important as the company holds out until February, when it will almost surely unveil the next iteration of the Galaxy S line.

 

 

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