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Android Nougat 7.1.1 update arrives with app shortcuts, more diverse emoji

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Google is launching Android Nougat (opens in new tab) 7.1.1 today. It’s a small, but meaningful update that’s focused on bringing a few new features, some of which were previously exclusive to the Google Pixel (opens in new tab).

Serving up the best news first, app shortcuts bring Force Touch-style menus to the greater Google family of phones, including the Nexus 6 (opens in new tab), Nexus 5X (opens in new tab), Nexus 6P (opens in new tab), Nexus 9 (opens in new tab), Pixel, Google Pixel XL (opens in new tab), Nexus Player (opens in new tab), Google Pixel C (opens in new tab), as well as Android One devices. Now, you can simply click and hold an app icon to execute an action, like setting your alarm or opening a fresh incognito tab in Chrome.

Next, the 7.1.1 update focuses on broadening the ways in which you can express yourself. Google notes that earlier in the year, it made a commitment to offer a more inclusive set of emoji that didn’t enforce gendered roles and job titles. Launched first on Pixel, this expanded set is now available on the devices listed above.

Of course, this wouldn’t be a proper update about expression in 2016 if it didn’t involve a GIF-powered keyboard. Keeping in line with Apple, and popular chat clients on the web, Google is bringing fast access to reaction GIFs to Hangouts, Messenger and Allo. Now, you can never escape GIFs.

Although the Nougat update is launching today, Google notes that your device may not actually receive the over-the-air (OTA) notification to install for the next few weeks.

What sorts of features would you like to see included in the next Android Nougat update?

Cameron Faulkner
Cameron Faulkner

Cameron is a writer at The Verge, focused on reviews, deals coverage, and news. He wrote for magazines and websites such as The Verge, TechRadar, Practical Photoshop, Polygon, Eater and Al Bawaba.