The Android 4.2 update may not be on the way to your phone anytime soon, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get the best Android 4.2 features now.
Google Nexus owners can download a file with the best new Android 4.2 features, but for users with other phones, it takes a little more work, and may require a few dollars in app purchases.
User can download and install the new Android 4.2 keyboard with gestures, new clock widgets just like any standard app. Installing the Android 4.2 camera with Photosphere is a little more complicated, but still possible.
Android 4.2 Gesture Keyboard
The new Swype-style gesture typing keyboard allows users to slide a finger across letters to type. After a bit of practice many users find this new typing style faster and more accurate than tapping on each letter.
The phone or tablet must run Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich or higher for this to work. Users will need to turn on the ability to install applications from unknown sources. Go to Settings -> Applications -> Unknown sources -> Check to enable this setting.
To use the keyboard, tap on “select input method” in the notification center, and select the new keyboard.
Android 4.2 Clock Widget
Users on Android 4.1 can install the new Android 4.2 clock widget, much like the new keyboard. This offers a new clock interface and layout.
Android 4.2 Camera with Photosphere
One of the coolest new Android 4.2 features is the new camera with Photosphere, a camera that can take detailed 360-degree panoramic photos. Check it out in action in the video below.
To use the camera, users will need to take a few more steps, outlined on XDA developers. This includes changing a build.prop file and owning a rooted phone. If this sounds like too much of a hassle, it may be worth waiting for the Android 4.2 or spending $1 on 360 Panorama.
Android 4.2 Features Not Available Yet
Not all Android 4.2 features are available on all Android devices yet. Several of the system settings are not yet available as standalone apps. We may see these come as parts of flashable ROMs in the near future.
- Quick Settings
- Lock Screen Widgets
- Google Now
Stay tuned for more Android 4.2 features and news.