Googles developer blog leaks iPhone X-style navigation gestures. It looks like Google just leaked a major new feature of Android P in a blog post. The post, which recaps a security feature, contained a screenshot of the DNS settings with a navigation bar that we hadn't seen before. The explanation from the rumor mill is that this is Android's upcoming iPhone X-style gesture navigation. After talking it out with the Android Twitter crew, 9to5Google's Stephen Hall said he's heard from sources that this is "100 percent" Android gesture navigation and that the back button is supposed to hide itself. If you wipe out the back button from this picture and call the pill-shaped home button a gesture indicator, you have something that looks exactly like the iPhone X's gesture navigation system. In Google's screenshot, a dialog box is open, so the theory is that in this (in-development, subject-to-change) build of Android, a back button pops up only when a dialog box is open and the button would normally disappear. This isn't the first time we've seen evidence that gesture navigation is on its way. Android P features a new horizontal sliding animation when you navigate from screen-to-screen in an app, which would line up well with a swipe-to-go-back navigation gesture. About 30 minutes after the post went up, it was updated with a new image that cropped out the navigation bar. For now, the original, uncropped image is still on Google's servers here.
This is on top of screen notch support. It's well-established that Android P will support notched displays when it arrives later in the year. However, that might not be the only iPhone X-like feature in the finished release. The 9to5Google team has noticed that a Google developer blog post briefly included an Android P screenshot (below) with a very different set of navigation buttons. Instead of the usual three buttons (back, home and multitasking) that have been present for years, the OS includes just a back button and an iPhone X-style strip. The image doesn't include hints as to functionality, but 9to5Google had previously heard through a source that Google was testing a nav bar where an upward swipe would trigger multitasking, similar to the iPhone X. The back button would also disappear whenever it's not in use, such as when you're visiting the home screen. We wouldn't bet money on this feature surviving in later releases. Google experiments with features that might be cut or modified by the time a new Android version reaches your hands. It's entirely plausible, however, that Google would show this off between its I/O conference in May and the eventual launch later in 2018. Tall-screened phones are becoming commonplace, and Google might want a clutter-free interface to match. An introduction at I/O would give app developers time to adapt to the change.