What better way to rain on your competitor’s parade than to release the first major update to your mobile operating system just hours after their event. That’s exactly what Google has done with Android 5.1, an update to Lollipop that includes a few new features as well as improved stability and performance.
For starters, Android 5.1 now allows users to use more than one SIM card on a device with dual SIM slots. This could come in handy if you’re using a pre-paid service while traveling or happen to share a phone with a family member.
The new update for Lollipop also delivers high definition (HD) Voice calls to compatible handsets such as the Nexus 6 for T-Mobile and Verizon subscribers. Other basic enhancements include the ability to join Wi-Fi networks and control paired Bluetooth devices from within Quick Settings.
But perhaps the most important addition is a service called Device Protection.
For those unlucky enough to need to use it, Device Protection ensures your device will remain locked if lost or stolen, even if someone manages to restore said device to factory defaults. The only way to unlock a missing device is by signing in with your Google account. We’re told this feature will be available on most Android phones and tablets shipped with Android 5.1 as well as Google’s own Nexus 6 and Nexus 9.
Google’s line of Nexus devices are expected to receive the update first, perhaps as early as today. Those with Android devices from other manufacturers like HTC and Samsung will likely have to play the waiting game considering 5.0 is still actively rolling out to some.