While Android dominates the middle and low-end of the global smartphone market, Apple controls much of the high-end with users who spend more on apps and other services. Embracing the notch may help change that. The design will mean more new Android phones with cutouts at the top of their screens to fit cameras and other sensors. That will likely support new features, helping Android device makers keep up with similar Apple technology.
Currently, Essential is the only major Android smartphone to feature a notch; however, Huawei is said to be working on a similar model.
Other updates to Android are said to include tighter integration with Google Assistant, improved battery life, support for smartphones with unique designs (multiple screens, foldable displays). Additionally, Google is trying to improve the look of the operating system to persuade more iPhone users to switch platforms.
Notably, Android's 'dramatic' redesign comes as Apple is reportedly refocusing its efforts on software quality rather than outward facing features. The new version of Android is internally being called 'Pistachio Ice Cream' but will likely have a different name when launched.