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Android O Easter egg: does the Developer Preview have a surprise for us?

Google has hidden Easter eggs inside its Android operating systems for many years. Our favorite OS has brought surprises with each of its iterations and we've gathered them here in a retrospective running from Android Gingerbread all the way up to Nougat and the developer preview of Android O.

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Android 8.0 O Easter egg

The first Developer Preview of Android 8.0 was just been made available, and one of the first things we checked for was the presence of an Easter egg. We're happy to report that there is, indeed, an Easter egg in the Developer Preview of Android O.

android o preliminary hero 2
If you tap the Android version number, you'll see this screen. Tap away to get the Easter egg! / © AndroidPIT

Unfortunately, the Easter egg isn't anything new. It is the same Easter egg as from Android 7.0 Nougat, allowing you to leave food out in an empty dish to attract cats. Simply follow the same process as the one listed below for Nougat's Easter egg and begin your mission.

It's a bit disappointing that we haven't got a new Easter egg, but this is only the first Developer Preview. Perhaps, in future versions, we will get a brand new Android O Easter egg that's more surprising than the last.

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Android 7.0 Nougat Easter egg

Android 7.0 Nougat features an Easter egg where your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to attract cats to eat plates of food you serve up. Yes, it's actually true - we couldn't make this stuff up if we wanted to. You can set this up as follows:

  • Go to the Settings menu
  • Scroll to About phone
  • Tap on the Android version until the N appears on the screen
  • The cat emoji should appear directly underneath the N
android n easter egg cat
See the cat? Then you're all set to go. / © AndroidPIT

When the cat's head appears, this means you've successfully activated the Nougat Easter egg. You're not finished yet, as there are a few more steps to complete:

  • Open your quick settings menu (drag down from the top of your display twice)
  • Tap on Edit
  • Drag the new icon Empty dish to your notifications bar.
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No Flappy Bird this time - not unless you count the chicken. © AndroidPIT

Now you'll be able to attract cats. To do this, tap on Empty dish to select the bait of your choice, and wait. When a cat comes to the dish, you'll be notified. You can even give the cat a name and share it with your friends. The cats will disappear after a while. 

android nougat cat easter egg
You have a visitor. / © AndroidPIT

Android 6.0 Marshmallow Easter egg

Android 6.0 Marshmallow features another Flappy Bird-inspired mini-game as its Easter egg, only this time, you must navigate through the lollipops to get the marshmallows at the end of them. It's still a frustratingly difficult game; access it by tapping your device's software version until a Marshmallow appears and then long press it.

AndroidPIT ANDROID Easter egg Marshmallow
Marshmallow's Easter egg also featured a Flappy Bird-like game. / © AndroidPIT

Android 5.0 Lollipop Easter egg

For the Android 5.0 Lollipop Easter egg, Google took inspiration from a pop culture phenomenon of the time, which was Flappy Bird. Tapping the software version will produce a flying Bugdroid that you must guide between Lollipop obstacles. It's an infuriating game that plays very similar to Flappy Bird. 

AndroidPIT ANDROID Easter egg Lollipop
Lollipop's Flappy Bird-inspired Easter egg. / © AndroidPIT

Android 4.4 KitKat Easter egg

Android 4.4 KitKat's Easter egg paid homage to all of the past versions of Android. Go to Settings > About phone and tap the Android version several times. A spinning letter K will appear which you can tap and hold to reveal the KitKat logo. Tap and hold that and a board of colored tiles featuring the logos of past Android versions will be revealed.

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Tap and hold on the KitKat sign to reveal the brightly colored tiles and images. / © AndroidPIT

Android 4.1 Jelly Bean Easter egg

Devices running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean will be greeted by a huge smiling red jelly bean in this version's Easter egg. Access it the same way as the others and long press on the giant jelly bean to flood your displays with more beans. Swipe these to fling them in any direction.

AndroidPIT ANDROID Easter egg Jelly bean
Fling Android Jelly Beans around the display. / © AndroidPIT

Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich Easter egg

Do you remember Nyan Cat? The pixelated cat who travels to outer space on a rainbow? Well, Android paid tribute to the Internet's favorite feline friend with the Easter egg for Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.

After tapping on the Android version number several times, a pixelated Bugdroid will appear. When you tap and hold on this, a Nyan Cat-inspired animation will begin featuring 8-bit Nyandroids shooting up into space. Nice.

AndroidPIT ANDROID Easter egg Froyo
The Ice Cream Sandwich Easter egg saw Google taking influence from Nyan Cat. / © AndroidPIT

Android 3.0 Honeycomb Easter egg

Android 3.0 Honeycomb's Easter egg is far less scary than Gingerbread's but it's nonetheless strange. Go through the same steps as mentioned above to activate it, and what you will see is a neon bee. A square box will appear underneath the bee's stinger housing the word 'REZZZZZ'.

In the Tron universe – which the bee appears to be part of – ‘Rezzing’ is the term used for generating a person or object in its game grid. Quite why Google is riffing on Tron, we don't know. 

AndroidPIT ANDROID Easter egg Honeycomb
A neon bee because, why not? / © AndroidPIT

Android 2.3 Gingerbread Easter egg

The Easter egg found in Android 2.3 Gingerbread is frightening. Featuring a hand-painted picture of a demonic, bow-tie wearing, yellow-eyed gingerbread man, a disconcerted Bugdroid and zombies, this first Easter egg is not only unsettling but strikingly different from Google's later attempts. Thankfully.  

To view this – as well as all of the other Easter eggs on our list – go into your device's Settings, choose About phone and tap on the Android version until the Easter egg appears. 

AndroidPIT ANDROID Easter egg Gingerbread
Gingerbread? More like Ginger dead... / © AndroidPIT

Did you know of all of these Easter eggs? Did we miss any? Let us know in the comments below.

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