Back in January on the Tasker Google groups forum Pent, the developer of Tasker, confirmed not only a Material Design facelift but also a few Nougat feature upgrades. He stated specifically that he would also be prioritizing quick-settings and app shortcuts. Now a few weeks after this huge announcement, Pent has officially publicized the next Tasker update in the website’s release notes. The page provides a laundry list of changes, bug fixes, and updates.
In order to keep it simple, below I have outlined what I feel are the more important aspects, from each section. Please note that aside from the first photo, which was provided by Pent, the other two (below) are my assumptions for the app shortcuts and quick settings features. Additionally, the two aforementioned photos are not actually screenshots of any pre-releases of Tasker, just what I imagine the features to look like.
switched themes to Material Design (Android 5.0+)
Probably the most exciting part of the announcement is regarding Material Design. It will be very welcomed and appreciated since it has been years since we received the last cosmetic update of Holo. Will it impact the functionality of the application? No but it will be nice to see it catch up with the others in terms of design. Being a die-hard Tasker user for many years now, I personally can not wait to see it. Over in the forum, Pent gave us a sneak peak of his vision for the update for the light theme and then stated this: “There will be an almost fully dark theme, but probably with orange accents”.
added approx 900 material design icons, selectable colours
This will also be a welcomed update considering the decent amount of native icons Tasker provides. Adding custom icons is not difficult but having native material design icons with color tints will be a nice plus.
action Set App Shortcuts, for Tasker or apps created by Tasker (Android 7.1+)
A feature implemented with Android 7.1 is app shortcuts. Now custom app shortcuts are soon to be native to Tasker. This means the possibilities are endless. Create different app shortcuts depending on your location, situation, time of day, or any other state or event context. I already have some ideas in mind for this new action. While AutoTools already has this feature, it will be nice to see it come to Tasker. I will use this feature to place my location-based tasks, currently taking up space on my homescreen, into Tasker’s app shortcuts.
action Test Net, option Paired Bluetooth Devices
We already have a Bluetooth connection context but what about in the task? Wouldn’t it be nice to get your Bluetooth network connection status and react on it accordingly? Yes, your problems will be solved very soon. Assuming it will be similar to the WiFi-type options, you should get Bluetooth device names, or MAC addresses into local variables.
scene element Switch
We all know how value but sometimes I painful scenes are in Tasker. And while isn’t a huge addition, a switch fits the Material Design theme. There are options that result in the same outcomes such as checkboxes and toggles but a switch is the more updated element IMHO. I do not have many scenes in my Tasker portfolio but i do have instances where I will use a switch.
relevant variables from plugin instances were not being passed to other plugin instances when editing
I saved the best for last. This change is the most important for people who use a lot of plugins. And I am definitely in that pool. Often times I use multiple Tasker plugins in a single task. I depend on them! But until this update comes along, I share the same frustration others do when passing plugin-created local variables between plugin actions. And that is, adding extra actions, typically a flash, to allow subsequent plugin actions to utilize the previously created variables. If this was the only Tasker update, I would totally happy!
This next Tasker update is slated to happen in approximately 4 weeks from his post on March 8. While it will only be a beta, it will not be long until it is released to the public. Stay tuned to the update by following the Tasker google groups forum. I am sure I can speak for the all fans and say, we can’t wait!