Android 12's Big Focus Is Privacy, But Most Privacy Features Aren't Available Yet

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This week, when Google held the keynote for I/O on Tuesday, a big theme was “privacy”. Which seems to be its theme every year now with new versions of Android and other new software. Google talked up quite a few privacy features, but none of them are actually available in the first beta of Android 12.

Two of the bigger features in Android 12 that surround privacy, are set to come in the second beta (which should arrive in June). That includes the much talked about Privacy dashboard, as well as the camera and microphone indicators.

Of course, those aren’t the only features that Google touted at I/O this week that are nowhere to be seen in this first beta. While this first beta has a lot of new changes in Android 12, it looks like the second beta is going to be just as big of a change.


What is the Privacy Dashboard?

The Privacy Dashboard is a pretty cool feature that Google is adding in Android 12.

Essentially, it’s a dashboard that looks a lot like Digital Wellbeing. It shows you what permissions were used recently, as well what apps used them at what time. The whole reason for this dashboard being here is to make it easier to keep tabs on what apps are using what permissions. As there are cases of apps using permissions that it doesn’t need. So this dashboard makes it easy to revoke those permissions.

The other big privacy feature in Android 12, is the camera and microphone indicators. In the right-hand corner of the screen, it’ll show you a green light when one or both is being used. Additionally, you can revoke those two permissions from the Quick Settings while you are within the app. Making it easier to revoke it, than having to dig through the settings to find it.