Android 5.0 Lollipop has just celebrated its four-month birthday, and already the rumors about Android M are starting. It's not too far-fetched to imagine that Google is working on the next installment of the mobile operating system right now, so let's take a look at some of the possibilities that are expected with the upcoming Android M.
First off, we know that Android M is coming, not only because it would be silly not to keep going with fresh updates on the popular mobile operating system, but because it was recently confirmed by Google. During the launch of the Android One in the Philippines, Vice President of Product Management, Caesar Sengupta, mentioned that the Android One devices such as the Cherry Mobile One and MyPhone Uno would be getting Android M.
So now we're excited because one of our favorite parts of a new Android OS is figuring out the name. Google has gone with a candy-like name since the operating system started, so the next letter in the alphabet (M) will begin some sort of sweet treat name. This means that we could see anything from Android Marshmallow to Android Milkshake to Android Malt. Or, Google could go with a name brand like they did for Android 4 (KitKat) and try something like Android Milky Way, Android Moon Pie, Android Milk Dud, or Android Mars. Either way, the name is sure to make us hungry.
And we're not even really sure if Android M will be a completely new number (6.0), or if it will start with something like 5.2. Android's Ice Cream Sandwich name was used for 4.0 through 4.0.4 when Jelly Bean took over from 4.1 to 4.3.1 and KitKat went from only 4.4 to 4.4.4. At the rate Google is going with Android Lollipop only now teasing 5.1, we think it's a sure bet that Android M will begin somewhere around 5.2 to 5.5.
But naming convention aside, we all want to know what types of features will be in Android M. The biggest rumor right now comes from Reuters who says that Android M will be built directly into select new cars to operate independently of an Android smartphone. This would mean a greater focus on Android Auto, which only makes sense.
Google has already announced Android Auto in conjunction with 28 different auto makers who will provide the service in new cars. It utilizes your Android smartphone to link up contacts, maps, media, and more directly into your car, but in a distraction-free environment.
"Android Auto was designed with safety in mind," Google says. "With a simple and intuitive interface, integrated steering wheel controls, and powerful new voice actions, it's designed to minimize distraction so you can stay focused on the road."
So, of course it would only make sense that Android M will work more closely with Android Auto, but this rumor about functionality without the use of a smartphone is intriguing.
But from there, we don't have too many more details on what else could be available in the new OS. Wishlists have already begun popping up on major Android tech sites, asking for everything from improved parental controls to better power-saving features, but we'll see if Google is listening to these customer concerns.
As for the release of Android M, Google seems to really like late Fall launches, so there's a good chance that we could see Android M announced at the Google I/O event in June for an October or November launch.