Android 13: The primary developer preview has arrived

Google’s Android builders on Feb. 10, 2022 introduced the supply of the platform’s subsequent iteration. Get the small print about Android 13’s first developer preview.

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You knew it was coming. The mud has barely settled on Android 12, and Google is already working towards the following tackle its cellular OS. This new launch is model 13, and the massive query is: Will Android 13 dwell as much as the large launch that was Android 12?

If I needed to guess, I’d say there’s no manner Android 13 can finest Android 12. However then once more, the present shiny new factor was a significant step ahead for the platform. In spite of everything, Android 12 introduced us Materials You, which was a critical improve to the Android UI. There’s no manner Google may pull such an enormous rabbit out of that hat of magic so quickly.

That doesn’t imply Android 13 will likely be boring. It should, nevertheless, look like a really refined launch, it doesn’t matter what tips Google has up its sleeve.

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Talking of which … what will we find out about Android 13? At this level, not a lot, however there are two main modifications and a few minor additions to report on. Let’s have a look.

Android 13: Right here’s what we all know up to now

Specializing in safety in Android 13

What we all know of Android 13 in the mean time is the principle options Google is already touting are all about safety. First, the builders are including a little bit of safety to the way in which customers share paperwork through a brand new picker and related APIs. So far, the doc picker has allowed customers to share paperwork with out the app needing any type of permission to view all media information saved on the machine (because it had blanket permissions to the whole media library). To make issues worse, the picture picker APIs are utilized by third-party apps to entry the shared photographs. A brand new picture picker will likely be added to supply a secure, built-in methodology for customers to pick out media information, while not having to grant entry to the whole media library.

This new picture picker will add a browsable, searchable UI that can current customers with their media libraries (sorted by date), and builders can specify that customers can see solely photographs or solely movies (most variety of media choices by default is about to 1).

It needs to be famous that this new picture picker will likely be backported to Android 11 units and newer.

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Close by machine Wi-Fi permissions can also be getting one thing new, within the type of a NEARBY_WIF_DEVICES runtime permission for apps that handle connections to close by entry factors. With earlier Android releases, the situation permission necessities introduced an issue for functions that wanted to connect with close by Wi-Fi units. With Android 13, the brand new NEARBY_WIF_DEVICES will use the “neverForLocation” flag, which asserts {that a} developer or app won’t ever use this permission to find out the bodily location of a tool (even when an app has been granted permission through ACCESS_FINE_LOCATION and/or ACCESS_COARSE_LOCATION). This could go a great distance to assist builders extra simply design apps which are privacy-friendly.

Refining Materials You in Android 13

Google launched Themed App Icons in Android 12 however the function solely supported the built-in (learn: Google) apps. With Android 13, the builders are extending this function to all builders, such that they will benefit from the Materials You Themed App icons. Builders solely want to provide a monochromatic app icon for his or her functions and alter the adaptive icon XML.

Extra modifications in Android 13

Minor additions within the Android 13 developer preview embody:

  • A brand new platform API to set the person’s most well-liked language, which can assist scale back boilerplate code required by builders.
  • Hyphenation has been optimized by as a lot as 200%, so builders can allow it in TextViews with practically zero efficiency influence.
  • Help for RuntimeShader objects which can work with the Android Graphics Shading Language to customise portray inside Android’s canvas and filtering the
  • View content material. This can enable builders to create superior visible results for his or her apps.
  • The Android Core Libraries are being labored on to higher align with the OpenJDK 11 LTS launch.
  • Google Play system updates is getting much more growth such that new options (such because the picture picker and OpenJDK 11) may be pushed to units with out requiring a complete OS replace.
  • Extra {hardware} optimizations will likely be seen, together with these for tablets, foldables and Chromebooks.

How you can become involved with the Developer Preview

When you’re an Android developer, you’ll need to get an early begin on tooling your apps for the following launch. To try this, you may head over to the setup directions and flash a system picture to one of many following units:

  • Pixel 6 Professional
  • Pixel 6
  • Pixel 5a 5G
  • Pixel 5
  • Pixel 4a (5G)
  • Pixel 4a
  • Pixel 4 XL
  • Pixel 4

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