Mittwoch, 14. Juni 2017

Whats new in ChromeOS Milestone 61?

Hey, my Acer R11 (cyan) got another update today in dev-channel: M61 with a lot of changes :)


NEW in 61.0.3159.8 (current dev as on 25 July 2017):

Apps can now access external SD-Card. Tested with 'Total Commander' - it requests permission on first access to SD, and can then read and write to it. If you don't grant the permission(sdcard access, not the general permission for file access), i couldn't find a way in Settings to re-enable it.
'Amazon Prime Video' App don't see any external card.
'Spotify' also don't see any external card.
'DiskUsage' don't see the card, too.
'ZArchiver' sees it but it gets displayed empty (no read/no write).
If you wan't another app from google play/f-droid/amazon apps tested, just drop me a comment :) .


New Loginscreen

At first, there's a new loginscreen/lockscreen with a more modern simple design, and without that square-box around your profile picture anymore.

New Lockscreen, similar to Loginscreen but with PIN-Input too.

Only issue i've encountered so far: if you're keyboard only on a chromebook with a single user setup, you need to tap about four times on <tab>-key to get to the password field. In older releases i could instantly type my password.



Nougat

And then theres the long-awaited Android Runtime update from Marshmallow to Nougat, 7.1.1 with Security Patch from 1.July 2017, to be exactly.

Means: after i first booted M61 i got a window informing me about a critical update... but it needed 30% batterycharge, even with the charger connected... so i left it alone charging. After reaching 30% it started the update/migration itself. Took some time, but worked without interaction or problems, like a update should. Couldn't take screenshot this early at login - sorry. But got a nice notification after the update:

The update was successful. You can now use Android-Apps.

So whats new with Android 7.1.1 on chromebooks?
At first, google play: if you're not in maximized-mode(with onscreen button) it is narrower - about 25% of screen-width (and about 90-95% screen-height).

smaller/narrower windows, but freely moveable again
Playstore - is this setting to hide installed apps new? ;)


Then i started a game i played on M60 as well: Final Fantasy IV, Androidversion.
At first it looked bad to me, because on M60 it couldn't go fullscreen, and instead of using 70% width and 100% height of the screen as in M60 it was a small, freely movable, window with about 50% width and 50% height only filling a quarter of my screen. Okay - hey - let's try to maximize (immersive key, some call it F4 ;) ) it. Damn, the same as in M60 it force-closes. But after restarting Final Fantasy IV it was still maximized. On M60 you had to press the immersive-key (F4) everytime. And another Force-Close -.- Just one more try, and to my surprise, it's now working fullscreen without any issues. Nice.

If you want to maximize it's telling you to restart the app - new in M61

FF IV - Fullscreen without dock or titlebar

But theres still two things i liked to be fixed. As a good example i like to use Amazon Prime Video (Android App, because it allows you to use it offline): It is now more phone-like if not maximized with a ratio of about 1:2, but of course won't autorotate, so you see only the middle part of the video. Here i hope it will get the quarter-screen-sized and freely movable window as Final Fantasy IV too and continues to play if it looses focus - would be really nice to watch streams while browsing like picture-in-picture mode.

Okay, the R11 got a tablet mode too if flipped, so what about Android Apps there?
It just shows one app maximized at a time as usual.



What else is new in M61? 

As in M59, but missing in M60, they brought the ChromeOS-Settings back to material design. Nice, sometimes a bit fiddly with the touchscreen and big fingers, but with a bad thing for bug-reporters: you can't copy most informations (buildtime, version, arc-version) anymore at once -.-

Material-themed Settings




And what not?

There's still another bug that bothers me: Sony's DualShock 4 can't be used with bluetooth on the R11 anymore. And now with true fullscreen for android apps it would be a pleasure to hook my R11 via HDMI to my TV and sit on the opposite wall of the room and play via bluetooth gamepad. But for now via usb it works great - so i need either a long usbcable or a long hdmi-cable -.-

For the non US-Layouts like German, you still can't snap or dock windows to the left or right with keyboard shortcuts - But theres a bugreport going on about this since january now...

And with the new material settings, like in M59, there's no more night-mode but instead you can choose if wifi stays on or not in standby.

Thank you for reading and as everytime i'm glad to hear feedback, your experience and more about this article, my blog itself or some suggestions via mail or in the comments below. David-Lee