From the very start, Google intended to fine-tune the gesture-based navigation system it introduced with Android Pie in an effort to make poking around phones with edge-to-edge screens feel a lot more natural. One of the gestures it was working on would summon Google Assistant with a swipe -- now that feature is rolling out with Android Q's fifth beta version that's available for Pixel devices. Users can swipe from one of the bottom corners of their phone to call on the platform's high-tech helper if they need it. The feature also comes with "handles," presumably on those corners of the screen, to serve as the gesture's visual representation.
In addition, Android Q Beta 5 introduces a "peek behavior" for apps that use navigation drawers -- panels that can be accessed with a swipe or a tap, showing users an app's main menu. This peek behavior will let users know if they've grabbed the drawer and if continuing with the gesture would bring it in.
"Gestural navigation lets apps use the full screen for content while minimizing the visible system chrome and navigation -- which is particularly important on today's edge-to-edge screens. In Beta 5 we're continuing to improve and polish based on your feedback and we wanted to provide an update on a few key areas," the tech giant said in its announcement.
Google says there's one more beta iteration to go before it releases Android Q to the public, but the fifth beta's features and behaviors are apparently very close to what we'll see in the consumer version. Pixel owners who want to take Android Q for a spin right now can check Google's FAQs for more details and to enroll their devices for access.