Google’s yearly Android updates almost always include a few features that manufacturers already implemented in their own device software. Some recent examples include screen recording and scheduled dark mode in Android 11, and now the upcoming Android 12 update is set to add another long-awaited feature: one-handed mode.
If you’re not familiar with one-handed mode, it’s a feature on some Android skins (like Samsung’s One UI) that shrinks the screen down to one corner of the device. This allows you to more easily reach all the corners of the display — something that was lost during the rise of gigantic phones over the past few years.
One-handed mode on One UI 3.0
XDA Developers reports that Google is developing a one-handed mode in the code repositories for AOSP (the open-source codebase of Android). The exact implementation details aren’t clear yet, but Google’s current code shrinks the screen down to 40% of the usual size, and it can be activated using either gestures or the three-button navigation bar.
For the moment, it’s also unclear if the one-handed mode will be visible in the Settings for all devices, or if it will be up to device manufacturers to decide (like the desktop mode in Android 10).