Android 6.0 Marshmallow is on its way and your Android smartphone and tablet are heading for a sizeable software update. Possibly. If you're lucky and pray to the Google Gods that is.
The search giant has confirmed that its next major Android patch, Android M, will roll out to new and existing devices later this year, bringing with it a host of new features.
As with past Android updates however, it's currently unclear which devices will be deemed worthy of the advanced functionality. Compatibility issues aside, here's what you need to know about the battery-boosting, USB-C-supporting Android Marshmallow.
Half of the fun of a new Android announcement is guessing what sweet treat the software will be named after, and seeing its themed statue unveiled outside of Google HQ.
On August 17, Google put an end to all the name-guessing hype and hysteria, overlooking the likes of 'Milkshake', 'Malt Ball' and 'Meringue' to officially confirm that Android M will be formally known as Android Marshmallow.
The campfire-fearing squishy treat follows equally sugary software offerings to launch, with past Android offerings having been dubbed everything from Éclair to Jelly Bean, KitKat to, most recently, Lollipop.
As well as the 'M' in Android M having now been assigned a home, the software has also been handed its official number.
Despite its slightly iterative nature, Android Marshmallow has jumped straight to the next step in the number run, missing the expected 5.2 tag to become Android 6.0.
Android Marshmallow: Features
Naming nuances aside, Google has a raft of new features set to make an appearance with Android Marshmallow. A few of you might even recognise some of them, as, despite Android and iOS forever pulling in different directions, they are consistently being pushed together.
Apple's upcoming iOS 9 patch has been criticised for adding a number of 'new' features that have been available on Android for some time. In a similar vein, Marshmallow will add a selection of updates that will be all too familiar to existing iPhone 6 owners.
An Apple Pay rival, enhanced app permissions and fingerprint payment support are all on the cards in the update Google is tipping as the 'most powerful Android release to date' - sound familiar?
With 'hundreds' of updates and improvements on the cards, hidden within this mass of minor edits and bug fixes are a few software gems.
Addressing one of the smartphone market's biggest on-going issues - limited battery life - Google, with Doze, is looking to stretch out your handset's staying power.
Capable of doubling your phone or tablet's battery life, Doze puts your phone into a deep sleep mode when it senses it's not being used - such as at night or while sat on your desk at work.
Still letting your notifications and alerts through, Doze will even know when your phone is placed prone, screen-down, kicking into battery conservation mode without prompting.
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Finally! It's about to become much clearer what aspects of your phone Android apps are dipping their noses into. Instead of bombarding you with a list of confusing allowances when downloading an app, you'll soon get to see what it's accessing, when it's accessing them.
If you're tetchy about handing over your contacts book or email access free rein, you'll know when to be wary. While this might not end all of your data-driven security concerns, it will give you a better handle on them.
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In a classic case of anything you can do, we can do better, Google has confirmed that Android M will see it relaunch its digital wallet efforts to take on Apple Pay.
Imaginatively dubbed Android Pay, the chief Apple Pay alternative will let users slap their handsets down on any contactless payment terminal to exchange digital currency for physical goods.
Like with Apple's service, your actual account number is not shared with retailers, with a virtual account identifier stored on the device to improve security. Although launching alongside Android Marshmallow, Android Pay will not be restricted to the new OS, working with all NFC-enabled devices running Android KitKat or above.
Standardized Fingerprint Support
Tying in with Android Pay is the Android Marshmallow-inbound standardised fingerprint support for Google-powered devices.
Opening the door for more widespread biometric sensor adoption on Android handsets, standardised fingerprint support will let you use your digit for far more than unlocking the device. In-app and online purchases will be given the fingerprint-locked seal of approval, as will contactless payments. It all sounds very iOS 8, don't you think?
Now on Tap
Just like iOS 9's comprehensive Siri improvements, Google will address its own voice-activated personal assistant in Marshmallow. Marking the dawn of our AI downfall, Google Now will soon understand context, and be able to hold more conversational interactions with you, its current user, soon to be minion.
Want restaurant suggestions when texting about dinner plans? Cinema times when deciding on what film to catch? Google Now will be watching, learning and delivering in contextually-aware fashion - it's unnervingly brilliant.
This new, reversible connection standard is still very much in its infancy, but over the next 18 months it's about to become an ever-present feature on leading gadgets. It's already on the new MacBook and heading to the OnePlus 2, but expect to see it on all smartphone and tablets soon.
Quicker transfer times and speedy charging are promised but, most importantly, USB Type-C will also spell the end of fiddling with cables trying to blindly work out which way up the bloody thing is supposed to go.
When is the Android Marshmallow release date?
Google will start dishing out Marshmallow treats to anyone with a Nexus 5, Nexus 6, Nexus 7, Nexus 9 or Nexus Player device from the week commencing October 5.
This was announced during the web giant's Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X launch event on September 29, and it comes as no surprise given that Google's own devices are always at the front of the queue for new updates.
The Huawei-made Nexus 6P and LG's 5X will, of course, run the latest operating system out of the box.
It is unclear when Android devices from the likes of Samsung, Sony, LG and HTC will receive the update, but history would suggest a staggered rollout.
These things are never simple in a world where so many manufacturers are attaching their own bells and whistles to Android, but we'll be sure to update this article when we hear from Sammy and co.
Is my device Android Marshmallow compatible?
Even when Android Marshmallow's wider rollout begins, it is unlikely your smartphone or tablet will be offered it straight away - no matter how new it is.
The $1m question of when users' devices will be offered the new Android OS update is, sadly, the question that is never very clear to answer.
Unlike Apple, which pushes out a single patch to all compatible devices on day one, the highly fragmented nature of Android means smartphone and tablet owners running Google's OS are often left waiting days, weeks, months, and even indefinitely for the latest patch.
There are a few handsets that have already been confirmed to be heading for an Android M update - including the HTC One M9 and One M8 - although timelines for these are still unclear.
Even when your handset of choice is given the Marshmallowy greenlight, you could still be left wanting, with network-locked devices also having to get through carrier testing before updates are rolled out.