Google announces 9 major new features for Android and Wear OS

Google has announced the release of 9 new features for Android and Wear OS during Mobile World Congress (MWC 2023), which takes place from February 27 to March 2 in Barcelona, Spain. The good part is that all the new features should arrive where Android is supported, including older versions, and in all available languages.

Signalpk has listed each of them, so check them out below and learn what to expect from your Android phone and watch with Wear OS 3 in the coming months.

It is worth remembering that these new features should arrive for Android in general, unrelated to the new OS version in the testing phase. If your device has already migrated to the most current software or is on the list due in the coming months, then it should be covered with all of them. For those who have been parked, some features may not be compatible.

9. Noise cancellation no Meet

The first new feature is noise cancellation in Google Meet video calls for Android. This is a feature that had already been anticipated by the company but had not yet been officially released for mobile.

The idea is to enable higher quality in the speaker’s voice, thanks to an AI capable of despising microphone squeak and background captures. The tool is essential for those working in busy places or at home with children.

8. More Emoji Kitchen options

In the example shown, you can combine the chicken emoji with the glowing heart to generate a unique third image (Image: Reproduction/Google)

The Gboard keyboard has also gained new Emoji Kitchen combinations. In case you’re not familiar, this is a tool that allows you to put two or more emojis together to create unique, one-of-a-kind images for use in chat programs or compatible apps.

No details have been given on how many combinations will be available from now on. The last change occurred in November, so it is good to know that Google is still betting on its virtual keyboard.

7. Keep notes adjustments

You will be able to set a single note and configure it from the Android home screen or in Wear OS (Image: Reproduction/Google)

A single note widget for Google Keep is scheduled to arrive. It will be possible to pin a specific note to the home screen, such as a shopping list or daily appointments, including those with background pictures and colors.

You will be able to manage it right there, without having to open the app or perform other actions. Before, the app only offered a shortcut to several separate lists, which was not very useful for those who need to deal with a single item.

6. Keep optimized on watches

Shortcuts to Keep should make it easier to manage notes on Wear OS (Image: Reproduction/Google)

Google Keep will be synced from your phone to your watch running Wear OS and vice versa, which should offer yet another way to display your note. Smartwatches should also have two shortcuts to help create to-do lists or reminders.

The advantage is that everything can be done on the smartwatch, without relying so heavily on your cell phone as before. You will even be able to use your voice to create your lists and not have to rely on the limited typing on wrist devices.

5. Freehand writing in Google Drive

A freehand writing annotation feature has been released for Google Drive, available on Android phones and tablets. Instead of typing something on a virtual keyboard, you can write with a pen or your finger on the screen.

This feature will come in handy for those who like to take notes on PDFs. You will be able to take a file hosted in your Drive to mark, supplement, or draw something, without having to modify it.

4. Zoom no Chrome

Finally, one of the new features is a website zooming utility in Chrome for Android. People have been able to zoom into the browser for more than a decade, but it was only possible to do so at a specific point on the screen.

Now, when zooming the font, images and other elements can be readjusted to the desired size, just like on the desktop. The measure should help those who have difficulty reading or want to see something more easily, without having to zoom in and out all the time.

3. New payment animations

Wear OS watch and Android phone users will be able to enjoy animations when making an on-screen payment. Google Wallet will feature fun images to confirm your in-store purchases.

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In addition to the blue confirmation tick, a seal and a penguin should also pop out on the screen. It is not yet clear if other animations will be implemented, nor if it will be possible to change to other animals or objects.

2. Fast Chromebook pairing

The Search Giant will also add the Fast Pair feature to Chromebooks. The feature already allows you to instantly connect Bluetooth headsets on cell phones, but now it would allow you to do so on Google’s laptops as well.

1. Accessibility options in WearOS

Wear OS 3+ will introduce two new sound and display modes to improve watch accessibility. Mono audio helps reduce any disorientation caused by split audio, while color correction and grayscale modes provide more options for displaying your watch.

Although everything was announced in one voice, Google plans to roll out the new features gradually. Four of the announcements – zoom in Chrome, Emoji Kitchen combinations, Keep widget, and noise cancellation in Meet – have already been available to interested parties since the weekend. The others should arrive “soon,” with no official release date yet.


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