Google ‘borrows’ from iPhone X for Android P design

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iPhone X Notch
How's battery life on your iPhone with iOS 11.4?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

New screenshots reveal Google took inspiration from iPhone X when designing its upcoming Android P update.

The operating system’s refreshed user interface features a multitasking interface that looks like it was pulled straight from iOS — as well as a familiar virtual Home button.

Android P won’t get its full reveal until Google I/O next month, but thanks to screenshots Google itself inadvertently posted online, we have been treated to a glimpse of some of its design improvements. Some of them will make iPhone switchers feel right at home.

Android P borrows from iPhone X

One of the most significant changes for Android P is a new app switcher. In previous versions of Android, active apps were displayed like a stack of cards that could be scrolled vertically. In this version, apps are displayed side-by-side and can be scrolled horizontally.

Android P app switcher
What the app switcher could look like in Android P.
Photo: 9to5Google

Google has made big changes to the navigation bar, too. Its Home button is now pill-shaped — like iPhone X’s but smaller — and the recent apps button is gone. Like on iPhone X, users get into the app switcher by swiping up from the bottom of the screen.

Android P navigation bar
Android P could get a new navigation bar, too.
Photo: 9to5Google

Google has not removed the back button, but it is believed the back is now context-aware and only appears when required.

Android P will also offer complete support for handsets that have an iPhone X-style notch in their display. Manufacturers have to made adjustments for a notch themselves in earlier versions of the operating system, but that won’t be necessary in the new release.

This isn’t final

Google quickly removed these screenshots after realizing they were published, but not before 9to5Google was able to grab copies of them.

It should be noted, however, that they were taken from an early version of Android P and its design could still change. Google has previously tested different interfaces that don’t make it into final Android releases, so there’s a chance this one could be scrapped.

We’ll find out what Android P will look like when Google unveils it during its I/O keynote on May 4.