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Android 5.1 vs Android 5.0 Lollipop Walkthrough: What’s New



For those that want to see what’s new in Android 5.1 Lollipop you can see the changes in our 5.1 vs Android 5.0 Lollipop walkthrough below. While most changes are small and under the hood, non-visible to users, there are still many nice additions in Android 5.1 Lollipop worth knowing about that we’ll detail for those interested.

This Android 5.1 walkthrough shows off some of the new features and animations integrated into Android 5.1, although most are on stock Android, but you’ll want to check out the Nexus 6 review below to learn more about Android Lollipop as a whole, as it goes over a lot more than just the new changes in 5.1 Lollipop.

Read: Nexus 6 Review

The Android 5.0 Lollipop release date arrived on November 3rd with the Nexus 9 launch, and roughly a month later Google finally started pushing out updates to Nexus owners a few weeks later. Since then they delivered 5.0.1 and 5.0.2 to fix bugs, then a bigger Android 5.1 Lollipop update started rolling out earlier this month with lots of changes you should be aware of.

Use this guide to Downgrade Android 5.0+ to Android 4.4.4 KitKat.

Now that Android 5.1 Lollipop is out and in the wild, rolling out to owners of the Nexus 5, Nexus 6, Nexus 7, 9, and Nexus 10, users will want to know about all the big (and little) changes Google has made to its latest OS update.

Android 5.1 is the first main maintenance update for Lollipop, fixing multiple bugs and improving stability, performance, and battery life over the original 5.0 release that debuted in November. And as we said above, most of the changes are behind the scenes, but in the slideshow below we’ll go over some of the more noticeable changes users should know about.

Read: Android 5.0 vs Android 4.4 KitKat: What’s New in Lollipop

At first glance Android 5.1 looks nearly identical to Android 5.0 Lollipop, but Google has fixed tons of little problems, improved key aspects of the entire operating system, and added some neat little tricks and fancy animations to make Android 5.1 Lollipop even more lively. Lets get started.

All images in the slideshow below show Android 5.1 Lollipop on the left, and the older Android 5.0 release on the right.

Quick Settings

Quick Settings

Our favorite new change has to do with Quick Settings. For those that don't even know, pulling down the notification bar twice (or once with two fingers) brings up a Quick Settings menu. From here you have access to screen brightness, and toggles for WiFi, Bluetooth, a flashlight, airplane mode, auto rotate settings, location, screen casting, and more quick toggles appear as you use them. Like hotspot control, and more.

In all of our slides Android 5.1 is on the left, with the older Android 5.0 screenshot on the right.

With Android 5.1 Lollipop Google made quick settings even better. Once you swipe down twice or once with two fingers, you'll have easier access to controlling WiFi or Bluetooth and connections. Rather than fumble through settings, simply tap the little drop down arrow, and you can connect to WiFi or Bluetooth devices all from here. This is a small but very convenient change, and one of our favorites.



  1. Chalss

    03/22/2015 at 7:18 am


    You can reboot the Nexus 5, for example, by holding the volume button 10 secs…

  2. Chalss

    03/22/2015 at 7:19 am

    I mean the power button lol

  3. sami

    03/25/2015 at 12:15 am

    thanks for the tip:)

  4. Shahsank

    03/27/2015 at 8:43 am

    one+ added this reboot option..BTW very nice article to read & follow more updates for my Nexus

  5. fabin

    04/01/2015 at 12:16 am

    kindly provide double tap on screen for on

    • hellomynameis

      07/29/2015 at 1:24 am

      Buy a Sony Xperia then. Sony Android OS is the best OS within the android phone line. Double tap to turn screen on. Holding power button to restart phone always been in Sony phones. Shake the phone to push away the number calling you, someone calling you, turn your phone with screen facing desk phone goes silent mode and let the phone ring. Gestures are the best within a Sony Xperia.

      • Stefano

        08/04/2015 at 10:47 pm

        I have all these features on my HTC. And some of them (“Shake the phone to push away the number calling you, someone calling you, turn your phone with screen facing desk phone goes silent mode and let the phone ring”) are quite old I’d say.
        Buy a HTC and anjoy :)

  6. mayur

    04/01/2015 at 5:56 am

    after update to 5.1 i lost all my contact no which where present on my phone..not able to import contacts from google also.

  7. josh

    04/14/2015 at 4:34 am

    I love that the only real thing pointed out as change is that new “drop down arrow” that is nothing more than just adding an arrow. With or without that arrow lollipop has been allowing you to manage Wi-Fi and Bluetooth the same way. I have 5.0.1 and have that same feature, it just doesn’t have the arrow there.

  8. Daniel

    04/16/2015 at 12:34 pm

    (Were you looking to make your intro as wordy as possible before getting on with it? Well done.)

    Thanks for the article. The pinned mode is nifty.
    I agree with the silent mode and reboot option. I’m running on a Nexus 4.

    Perhaps the Google Play store picked up a few animations itself since 5.1, I’ve noticed?

    (Also, have your editor do a proof of spelling).

  9. gordon

    04/21/2015 at 9:52 am

    I did the lolioop update when it came out and lost my photo gallery and some other apps which I can no longer get to work so am not installing anymore updates am happy with my phone just the way it is

  10. sonomofo

    04/24/2015 at 5:57 pm

    This web site sucks. I’m trying to read an article on new features of Android 5.1 and I click the slide show nav arrow to view the next slide and I’m taken to an article about samsung galaxy note 4 lollipop problems. WTF? I can’t even hit the browser’s back button to get back to the Android 5.1 article, I’m stuck here on the samsung article.

    Bye bye!

  11. sonomofo

    04/24/2015 at 6:00 pm

    This web site sucks. I’m trying to read this article on what’s new with Android 5.1 and click the next nav button on the slide show, but i”m taken to an article about samsung galaxy note 4 lolipop problems. WTF? I can’t even hit the browser’s back button to get back to the Android 5.1 article, I’m stuck on the samsung article.

    Bye bye!

  12. Air Stream25

    04/30/2015 at 7:39 pm

    Actually, both the Verizon Galaxy S5 and Note 4 currently have VoLTE enabled. In addition to improved audio, video calls are also supported.

  13. Sharon Y

    05/06/2015 at 12:17 pm

    I do not see screen pinning under Settings> Security> I have:
    Phone Admin., Encryption, Find My Phone, SIM Card lock, Passwords, Security Update service, Credential Storage, Advanced. There is no screen pinning under any of these headings.

    • Mark Boyle

      05/08/2015 at 3:51 pm

      It’s under advanced, and you need 5.1.

      • John

        08/28/2015 at 12:40 am

        Actually, you only need 5.0. Change in 5.1 was apparrently only clearer help text.

  14. John Sunday

    05/06/2015 at 6:29 pm

    It happened to me too. Pay attention to the CAPITALS. I hope it helps you out.

    Many still can’t figure it out, so here’s how. Go to settings > security, and scroll down and enable screen pinning. Then simply open the browser or any app you want to pin, then tap the multi-tasking (recent apps buttom) and scroll up (this is the important part: SCROLL UP A BIT and you’ll be able to see the pin icon on the LOWER RIGHT CORNER of the tab). You’ll see the pin, and just tap it.

    As simple as that. =)

  15. Joe

    05/07/2015 at 9:31 am

    Hopefully it will come with a “how much battery has been used ” line in setting. I know some S4 phones have it over seas. Whats up[ with that?

    • risesunsett

      05/16/2015 at 3:05 pm

      OMG! I’ve not heard nor read ANYbody else mentioning this Very useful feature that u just did, and was starting to think I was just crazy and no one else found it as useful as I did. That one feature they took away from the Battery Graph in our settings is one of The most useful and detailing features of all, to me anyway. I sure am glad I kept reading these comments til I read urs, as I was Just about to leave site and Google whether or not it is known yet if the S5 will be receiving the Android 5.1 update. Feel much better now that I finally read of someone else missing this feature. I mean, WTF already Samsung? Why in the world would they remove that… Are they really THAT lazy? They also did not incorporate the rest of Lollipop’s new Battery functions I’ve read about. They just HAVE to do things in their own way, often times going up 2 hills just to turn around and go back down one…. No sense, man…. No sense at all, it makes to me. Thanks for commenting. You made my day Joe. Have a good one.

  16. donna

    05/14/2015 at 11:45 pm

    no more missed call notification? I need that badly due to work requiring phone to be silent.

  17. Mahesh Kumar

    07/07/2015 at 5:55 pm

    After Updating to Lollipop 501 in my motoX 2nd generation i have faced three problem so far
    – i don’t know where my audio files are gone
    – my battery is draining so fast.not fore then 4hrs
    – when i am playing music online and keep it pause. it some notification comes like gmail or facebook its automatically starting the music application and playing the songs.

    how to go back to 5.0????

  18. peace zamrud

    07/25/2015 at 11:51 pm

    My samsung tablet s become more worse after done update, kitkat more fast and comfortable then lollipop….this lollipooop really piss me off…. really disappointed with lollipop. Hope you release another better android soon…

  19. Lenny

    08/03/2015 at 4:05 pm

    Do not down load lollipop 5.1 kills battery

  20. bigjohn

    08/05/2015 at 3:46 am

    I did the lolipop update on my droid turbo and I lost about half of my contacts and my service bar and WiFi hasn’t worked correctly since. WiFi is constantly in and out, and I haven’t had full service since the switch. Text messages hardly go through anymore gotta walk around like a lost moron with my phone in the air to get a text sent. Absolutely hate the lolipop system upgrade been nothing but issues for me at least with my turbo.

  21. Peter

    08/05/2015 at 5:35 am

    Quote: “With Android 5.1 Lollipop Google made quick settings even better. Once you swipe down twice or once with two fingers, you’ll have easier access to controlling WiFi or Bluetooth and connections. Rather than fumble through settings, simply tap the little drop down arrow, and you can connect to WiFi or Bluetooth devices all from here.”

    You can do the same in 5.0 by simply holding you finger on the WiFi or Bluetooth symbol in Quick settings until a list of available networks pops up.

  22. Haider Niazi

    08/07/2015 at 9:57 pm

    Another thing added to 5.1 is that when you enter the password or pin number to unlock your phone u need not to press the enter button as we used to in 5.0
    Good for me atlest…

  23. naveen

    08/16/2015 at 11:17 pm

    Android 5.1

  24. Sachin

    08/28/2015 at 10:08 am

    Head up notification is so irritating in 5.0, and then more frustrating is, clearing it clears the notification as well specially with WhatsApp msgs… Thankfully lollipop improved this on 5.1
    Now waiting for 5.1 update on moto e2

  25. jasonwltan

    09/09/2015 at 6:29 pm

    One thing that bothered me the a lot when i updated to 5.0 was the carrier’s name covering the notification icons in the notification bar when the phone is locked. Is this reverted back like when it was Kitkat?

  26. azaan malik

    09/14/2015 at 11:48 am

    I buy NEW note 3 4g version N9005
    currently version is 4.3.
    Now I am receiving new update. but i am heard the lolipop 5.0 is not suitable and have many bugs.
    plz tell me should i update or not.

  27. avalanchez

    09/15/2015 at 6:05 am

    Omg… was just about to update 5.1 in to my xperia. Following the thread, I wonder no one have dare to complement the update. I am afraid to lose my contacts, audio files not to mention the update will going drain my poor battery. Guess i should stick with my 5.0

  28. anjusaha

    09/16/2015 at 6:04 pm

    I deeply regret moving out of Kitkat to Lollipop mainly because I lost what was really excellent in the meetings feature. I have a daily one and a half hour meeting where, in Kitkat, I had set options for all notifications to vibration only. With their “improved” lollipop 5.0 and downtime settings, it has been pre-decided that meetings can only last exactly one hour – or I can set it for two meetings i.e. for two hours – I seem to have lost the option of one and a half hours. Also now the phone does not vibrate when I get a call but beeps out loud when there is a message. Is there a solution in version 5.1?

    The second is that they removed group messaging so if there is a shift in the meeting timings I now cannot send a group message to the members – sending individually meant I sometimes missed a few. Any solution for this here please?

    Because of my bad experience in updating to Lollipop 5.0, I am extremely hesitant in going on to 5.1. Fancy animations are fine but will I lose some more basic and essential features? I use a moto g

  29. thanushan

    09/20/2015 at 6:21 pm

    hi my mobile galaxy a5 what to update loloipop 5.1.1 ?
    now kitkat 4.4.4

  30. courtney browne

    10/01/2015 at 7:06 pm

    i love the 5.1.1 it working nice on my s4 i9500 and theres a reboot option

    • anjusaha

      10/01/2015 at 7:32 pm

      The move from Kitkat to lollipop was BAD. Since Android are on there own and uncaring of customer needs, the latest update can only be worse.

  31. Blueberry

    10/03/2015 at 9:02 am

    The new update is pretty cool BUT I can’t open any of my google apps (Youtube, Play Store, Docs). The app will open but it’ll just get stuck on like a loading page forever ( ; __;)
    Anybody else having this problem? Is there anyway to fix it?

  32. somnath

    10/09/2015 at 1:41 am

    i just switched my sony xperia Z3 from 5.0.2 to 5.1.1.checked all function and it’s working fine.Battery consumption found to be silly less.nothing deleted.yeppie.

  33. Resty

    10/28/2015 at 5:12 pm

    alarm not working on silent mode while others are.

  34. Resty

    10/28/2015 at 5:14 pm

    FB pics cannot be saved. Is this 5.1 issue or just the phone? Alcatel Flash 2 btw.

  35. Maureen

    11/15/2015 at 8:47 pm

    Wish I still had kit kat on my moto g. Will not be updating my phone or my nexus 7 . If you still have kit kat keep it.

  36. jj

    11/16/2015 at 10:04 pm

    how to add user in 5.1

  37. Mann

    11/18/2015 at 6:00 am

    Android 5.1 sucks big time, can’t access my contact lists, it doesn’t get updated . Battery drops immediately. N whatsapp doesn’t show profile pic during chatting.

  38. Randy

    11/23/2015 at 4:13 pm

    Anyone know how to get back the email accounts after android 5.1 on a Moto X?

  39. Lish

    11/24/2015 at 7:41 pm

    The mandatory Lollipop 5 downgrade to the Samsung Galaxy S4 is unquestionably one of the most hated software updates ever released by a major corporation. The candy-colored interface is not only childish and unsightly, its low-contrast fonts provoke eyestrain and are nearly illegible in dim lighting. What’s even more aggravating are the increased power drain and degraded video playback performance, not to mention the frequent need to manually clear OS caches and restart the phone. Check out the poll below to see what an utter failure Google has wrought with this travesty:

  40. alok singh

    11/26/2015 at 12:22 am

    A particular coll log could not delete. After screen locked background music control not sowing

  41. j.Michael O'Hara

    12/12/2015 at 5:08 am

    A little late to be adding to this blog, but I agree with Lish (11/24/2015) completely; only my choice of words would be entirely more colorful and probably censored. Aside from the total disdain and contempt I have for Google, Samsung and AT&T (in my case) shoving this crap down our throat, what I did not see mentioned on this blog is a real understanding of what is going on for everyone to really complain. Aside from the ugliness of every aspect of 5.0.1 (and up) UI, there is more tracking software that I will never use, some third party, which obviously was a partnership with either AT&T and/or Samsung and Google. But what really pisses me of the most, is the number of junk applications that have been LOCKED so you cannot go into the Applications Manager and turn them off.

    I still have Kit Kat on another phone, that is guarded closely to NEVER be on Wi-Fi and susceptible to a forced upgrade to Lollipop (“downgrade” is more accurate). And I only have Google Play on when I need another application running that depends on it, OR… when I am syncing my calendar or contacts. It saves battery, and it keeps the prying eyes of Google and God only knows who else from tracking my every move, which Google Play is needed on “most” software that is doing this. Few people seem to read the Permissions of all this “free” software to see how exposed they are to having their contents, contacts, web searching and anything else you use your phone for, from being scanned by other companies. Local news station software aps are good at this. Their should be laws against this, under terms like “deception” “bad faith” “misrepresentation” and best of all: Deceptive Acts and Practices. But until the people get smart about how bad corporate America is screwing us, it isn’t going to happen.

    The best option is graduate up to the Rooting platform, get smart about it, do it and be done with getting screwed.

  42. Crissy

    12/24/2015 at 5:02 pm

    Screen Mirroring isn’t working SCAN button doesn’t work! Help please

  43. bill bill

    02/18/2016 at 12:22 pm

    No menu button.
    Where is the menu button.
    I cant find the menu butt

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