Here comes the next version of Android, with a big push for better battery life

Sundar Pichai, Google CEO
David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Google released the next version of Android to app developers on Tuesday. The new iteration of Google's mobile operation system, which will likely power the next generation of Android smartphones and tablets, is simply known as "Android O."

Google's vice president of engineering Dave Burke detailed some of the changes that developers and consumers can expect from the Android O release, which probably won't be available to consumers until next fall.

"Android O puts a big priority on improving a user's battery life and the device's interactive performance," Burke explained in a blog post. Burke said a new function in Android O allows the operating system to limit what sorts of things applications can do in the background, resulting in battery life savings for the end user.

Android O will also add Picture in Picture support, a feature Apple already offers on its iPad tablets. Google says it will also be available for phones, however, and will allow folks to watch movies or other video clips while performing other activities, like checking email or surfing the web.

The Android O Developer Preview is available now. Expect to hear more about Google's next operating system, perhaps even its official name, during Google I/O 2017 in mid-May.

Until then, it's time to play the perennial guessing game about the operating system's eventual name. Google released Android N around the same time last year before it eventually revealed the name "Android Nougat" last June. What will Google O be called?