The most exciting thing about a big Android update is being able to follow a predictable pattern of releases to get a taste of all the new features. Google's Android 12 update marked the biggest visual redesign of the operating system since Android 5 Lollipop thanks to Material You. The new design philosophy along with an exhaustive list of new features makes Android 12 look and feel radically different from previous iterations.
Android 13 remains largely similar to the previous release in terms of overall aesthetics, but there is a ton of new stuff under the hood. It's been in beta for a very long time, with each new release adding features and smaller improvements to different elements of the Android system. Android 13 has officially gone gold, and it's now available for all the supported Pixel devices and some other non-Pixel phones. If you want all the Android 13 info in one place then you've come to the right page. Here's everything you need to know about Android 13!
What's Android 13 called?
Google ditched its dessert naming scheme for Android two years ago with Android 10's brand redesign. The use of dessert names, however, has continued for the company's development teams internally. Android 11, for instance, was internally called "Red Velvet" while Android 12 is internally known as "Snow Cone". Similarly, Android 13 is called Tiramisu. Google is no longer keeping it a secret as it was found in one of the commits on the AOSP Gerrit back in July last year.
For those of you who are curious, these have been the dessert name (internal or public) of all the Android versions so far:
- Android 1.5: Cupcake
- Android 1.6: Donut
- Android 2.0: Eclair
- Android 2.2: Froyo
- Android 2.3: Gingerbread
- Android 3.0: Honeycomb
- Android 4.0: Ice Cream Sandwich
- Android 4.1: Jelly Bean
- Android 4.4: KitKat
- Android 5.0: Lollipop
- Android 6.0: Marshmallow
- Android 7.0: Nougat
- Android 8.0: Oreo
- Android 9: Pie
- Android 10: Quince Tart
- Android 11: Red Velvet Cake
- Android 12: Snow Cone
- Android 13: Tiramisu
For what it's worth, we already know what Android 14 "U" might be called. Some of the first commits relating to Android 14 that popped up on the Android Gerrit have revealed the codename "Upside Down Cake" for the next version of Android.
Android 13 release date
Google released the stable Android 13 update to the public on August 15, 2022. The update was made available to the company's Pixel phones alongside the source code. Google's Developer Preview program for Android 13 started in February 2022 and a lot has changed since then, leading up to the final release in August 2022. Here's a quick look at the original roadmap Google released for Android 13 beta program:
As expected, Android 13 hit the "platform stability" in June 2022, following two Developer Previews and two full Beta releases. The company then released the Android 13 Beta 4 a.k.a the final release candidate in July 2022.
Google is currently pushing out the Quarterly Platform Release (QPR) builds. We just received the Android 13 QPR1 Beta 2 update earlier this month, with more builds expected to arrive in the coming months. We suggest you check the article index above to jump to into the build changelogs.
Android 13 Developer Preview
We got a taste of Android 13 "Tiramisu" for the first time on February 10, 2022, when Google started rolling out the first Developer Preview release. Unlike last year, we didn't get a Developer Preview 1.1 patch for Android 13. Instead, we directly received the Android 13 Developer Preview 2 on March 17, 2022.
As the title "Developer Preview" implies, these releases are intended for usage by developers only. It lays the groundwork for the next iteration of the world's biggest operating system and allows app developers to test out new features and begin platform migration leading up to the final release. For us, these preview builds gives a glimpse of what's to come in the future with a stable release. We've detailed all the new features and functionalities that arrived with the Android 13 Developer Preview 1 update in the following sections, so be sure to check it out.
Android 13 Beta
Google skipped the Developer Preview 3 for Android 13 and exited the “developer preview” stage with the first release of Android 13 Beta 1 on April 26, 2022. The second Android 13 Beta release arrived as a part of Google I/O 2022 on May 11, 2022, while the third one came out on June 8, 2022. The fourth and final release candidate was released on July 13, 2022. Then, Google officially rolled out the public Android 13 build in August 2022.
Will my device get Android 13?
Google's Pixel smartphones are amongst the first ones in line to receive Android 13 "Tiramisu" when it comes out later this year. There's no way to tell when the non-Pixel devices will receive the Android 13 update as it largely depends on individual OEMs to decide how much time they want to spend developing their UX skins. It is safe to assume that smartphones with lighter UX skins, like ASUS’ Zen UI, will receive the Android 13 update before the relatively heavier skins, such as Xiaomi's MIUI.
For now, though, Google has opened the doors to Android 13 Beta for some non-Pixel devices through Developer Preview programs. You can join the Android 13 party right now to get a taste of what's to come in the future if you have one of the eligible devices mentioned below:
Here’s every device currently eligible for the Android 13 Beta
- Google Pixel 7/7 Pro
- Google Pixel 6/6 Pro/6a
- Google Pixel 5/5a
- Google Pixel 4/4 XL
- Google Pixel 4a/4a 5G
- ASUS ZenFone 8
- Vivo X80 Pro
- Lenovo P12 Pro
- OnePlus 10 Pro
- Xiaomi 12
- Xiaomi 12 Pro
- Xiaomi Pad 5
- Oppo Find X5 Pro
- Oppo Find N (China only)
- ZTE Axon 40 Ultra
- Realme GT2 Pro
- AQUOS sense6
- Camon 19 Pro 5G
- Nokia X20
We'll continue to add more devices to this list if/when they're eligible to receive the Android 13 beta update. If you don't have a Pixel phone or one of the aforementioned OEM devices, then you can try the Android 13 beta by installing the Generic System Image (GSI).
Where do I download Android 13 Beta from?
We'll update this section with links to download the stable Android 13 packages once they're made available to the public. In the meantime, you can check our dedicated article to find the latest download links for all the Android 13 builds so far. You can find the correct package for your eligible device from the list, manually install it, and try the new software.
How to install Android 13 Beta?
Once you have downloaded the correct package for your eligible smartphone, you can give Android 13 a shot right now by following a few additional installation steps. We suggest you head over to our Android 13 installation guide to learn more about the process in detail.
What's new in Android 13?
The Android 13 update may not be as big as the Android 12, but it still brings a host of new features and changes. We already had a chance to check out many of these new features thanks to the developer preview builds and beta releases, but many unannounced changes are still lurking under the hood. We'll try our best to highlight every change leading up to the beta 2 update so far, but it's safe to say that a complete list of all the features will only be available after we get our hands on the final build.
Google has released a bunch of developer preview and beta builds of Android 13 so far. We're about to dive into a long list of features, some of which are more monumental than others. The company also tends to ship out a lot of hidden features with these builds. We'll include some of the important ones which we think are worth mentioning under each section for now before we add more details leading up to the final release.
Android 13 Developer Preview 1: Announced features
As we mentioned earlier, the Android 13 Developer Preview 1 build was released on Feb. 10, 2022. Here's a quick look at some of the important features that caught our attention:
Android’s Bluetooth and Ultra-wideband stacks are now mainline modules
Google announced that it will make Bluetooth and Ultra-wideband stacks mainline modules in Android 13. This allows the company to push new Bluetooth and Ultra-wideband features and security patches specific to these components without depending on OEMs to roll out a software update. For the uninitiated, this is a part of Google's Project Mainline that allows it to take charge of critical framework components and system applications.
Hyphens can be inserted when the text reaches the end of a line in a TextView or a container. It's essentially a line break to make the text wrap around the next line. Android can handle hyphenation for you, but it comes at a performance cost. As a result, it's off by default. With Android 13, however, Google says it has improved this feature with up to a 200% performance boost. This means developers can now enable hyphenation in their TextViews with little to no impact on rendering performance.
Nearby device permission for Wi-Fi
Before Android 13, the apps that needed to connect to nearby Wi-Fi devices had to request location permission. This was a redundant request because the app didn't really need the device's location to function. Google is changing that now with Android 13 by splitting that functionality into new runtime permission called NEARBY_WIFI_DEVICES. The developers targeting Android 13 for their apps can now request the NEARBY_WIFI_DEVICES permission with the “neverForLocation” flag instead.
OpenJDK 11 updates
As we mentioned in our Android 13 DP1 coverage, Android 13’s core libraries are updated to the most recent LTS version of OpenJDK 11. We're looking at both library updates and Java 11 programming language support for app and platform developers. Google also noted that these changes will be backported to Android 12 devices through an update to the ART module.
New quick settings tiles
Another interesting addition to the Android 13 DP1 build is the new set of quick settings tiles. The company added a bunch of these including one or scanning QR codes, toggling color correction, enabling one-handed mode, and more.
Note: As a part of new API changes to Android 13, Google is also adding a new tile placement API that'll let apps prompt users to directly add their custom tile to the set of active Quick Settings tiles.
Per-app language preferences
Multilingual users can choose their preferred language in Android 12's Settings app under the System> Languages & input. The language settings, however, are applied system-wide right now, which may not be ideal for those who want to use some apps in one language, and other apps in another language. Android 13 changes this with the help of a new platform API. Users can simply head over to Settings> System> Languages & input> App Languages to set their preferred language for each app.
Themed app icons
Google introduced an "experimental" themed icons feature in their Theme Picker app that shipped with Android 12. It was very limited in nature as a beta feature, but Google has updated the AdaptiveIconDrawable API to support themed app icons in Android 13. With this, the app developers are now actively encouraged to provide compatible icons to allow users to customize their home screens better.
In addition to these, Google also added a new photo picker API that can be invoked without requiring access to all photos on the device, programmable shaders, and more. You can check out our Android 13 DP1 coverage to learn more about some of these changes in detail.
Android 13 Developer Preview 1: Unannounced changes
Google, as we mentioned earlier, also ships out a lot of unannounced changes with each new Android build. Let's take a quick look at some of those hidden features that were discovered within the Developer Preview 1 build:
Two home screen layouts for the Pixel Launcher
Android 13 DP1 added support for multiple home screen layouts on Pixel phones, allowing the Pixel launcher to support two independent layouts. In addition to the standard layout, some users were able to trigger a large screen layout by setting the DPI on their Pixel phone to 600 or higher.
Clipboard auto-clear feature
Another interesting feature that didn't make it to the official announcement post is the new clipboard auto-clear. Android 13 brings a new clipboard auto-clear feature to delete the primary clip from the global clipboard after a set amount of time, much like Gboard. What's more interesting is that this new feature in Android 13 also gives you an option to change the duration after which the clip is cleared.
New user profile switcher
The Android 13 DP1 build ships with a new keyguard profile switcher that appears as a drop-down menu on the lock screen PIN/password/pattern entry page. This will allow users to switch profiles even before unlocking the device. The keyguard profile switcher is said to be disabled by default, but here's what it looks like when enabled:
Privacy dashboard with longer data retention
Android 13's DP1 build introduced a new "show 7 days" button within the privacy dashboard that will show permissions access data from the past 7 days. In case you're wondering what's new, the original privacy dashboard feature that was introduced with Android 12 only shows data from the past 24 hours. This feature, however, isn't enabled by default in Android 13 DP1, although that may change with the future builds leading up the final release.
LED flash brightness control API
The Android 13 DP1 build introduces two new APIs to the CameraManager class — getTorchStrengthLevel and turnOnTorchWithStrengthLevel. Simply put, these new APIs will let users adjust the brightness of their phone’s flashlight, like the custom Android skins from some OEMs already do.
Hub mode for tablets
The last one in the series of announced changes in the Android 13 DP1 build includes hints about a new Hub Mode for tablets. This new mode will let users share apps between profiles without borrowing sign-in data or switching between profiles. Notably, the Hub Mode will also let users set up “trusted networks”, thereby preventing others from accessing shared apps/data unless connected to the specified network.
Android 13 Developer Preview 2: Announced features
Android 13 Developer Preview 2 was released on March 17, 2022, and it added a bunch of new features and lots of improvements over the previous developer preview. Let's take a look at the changes that were officially announced with the rollout:
If you hate getting too many notifications on your phone from unwanted apps, this feature is going to be your savior. Android 13's DP build comes with new runtime permission for sending notifications from an app. The apps that are targeting Android 13 will need to request permissions from the user to push notifications. Google says it's actively encouraging developers to target Android 13 as early as possible and request the notification permission for their respective apps.
This is going to be a great feature because it directly puts the end-users in charge of picking the apps that they want to see notifications from. You'll soon be able to stop a random application from sending you notifications, including promotions.
Developer downgrade permissions
Android 13 is introducing a new API that will allow developers to downgrade previously granted runtime permissions that are no longer needed by an updated version of the app.
Improved Japanese text wrapping
Android 13 DP1, as we mentioned earlier, introduced improvements to text wrapping with faster hyphenation. The company is making more improvements with the DP2 build, specifically for Japanese text this time. The TextViews can now wrap text by Bunetsu, the smallest unit of words that’s coherent, instead of by character. This should make way for some polished and readable Japanese apps. Developers can enable android:lineBreakWordStyle=”phrase” with TextViews to take advantage of this.
Improved line heights for non-Latin scripts
Google has improved support for non-Latin scripts such as Tamil, Burmese, Telugu, and Tibetan in Android 13. The new build now uses line height that's adapted for each language, thereby preventing clipping and also the positioning of the characters.
Android 13 adds support for the new MIDI 2.0 standard, including the ability to connect MIDI 2.0 hardware through USB. For the uninitiated, MIDI 2.0 offers improvements to the resolution for controllers, support for non-Western intonation, and more expressive performance using per-note controllers.
Bluetooth LE Audio support
Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) audio promises lower power consumption and higher audio quality using the low Complexity Communications Codec (LC3). There are a good amount of products on the market with hardware that support BLE Audio, so we're glad to see Google adding support for LE Audio in Android 13.
Color vector fonts
Android 13 can render COLR version 1 fonts, a new and highly-c0mpact font format with support for color grading. The Android 13 DP2 build also updates the system emoji to the COLRv1 format. You can read more about COLRv1 in the Chrome announcement.
New Foreground Services (FGS) Task Manager
Android 13 DP2 includes a new Foreground Services (FGS) Task Manager which shows a list of apps that are currently running a foreground service. It also lets users stop foreground services regardless of the target SDK version. The new "Active Apps" list can be accessed by swiping down on the notification drawer and tapping on the new icon next to the Settings cog. Tapping on it will open a card with the names of the apps, time spent active in the foreground, and also a Stop button. It is, however, worth pointing out that stopping an app via the FGS Task Manager doesn’t have the same effect as closing an app from the recent screen or using the "Force Stop" option. You can learn more about this particular feature right here.
The Android 13 Developer Preview 2 build also brings a ton of other developer productivity improvements too. We suggest you check out our Android 13 DP2 coverage to learn more about those announcements in detail.
Android 13 Developer Preview 2: Unannounced changes
Much like the first developer preview, the Android DP2 build was also full of many hidden features that weren't a part of Google's official announcement. Here, take a look:
App drawer in the taskbar
Google added a taskbar to the bottom of some large-screen devices, including some tablets and foldable phones as a part of one of the Android 12L updates. The same taskbar is also seen in the Android 13 DP2 build, but it comes with an additional icon that lets you open the app drawer.
Updated media controls and output picker
Along with a slew of new features and API changes, the second Developer Preview of Android 13 also came with updated media controls. Android 13's media controls are still located between the quick settings menu and the notification panel, but the widget itself is a lot bigger now. While this means fewer taps to control your media, it also leaves lesser room for notifications. Notably, the updated media control also makes it easier to pick an output. The new output picker is now accessible by tapping the button at the top-right of the media controls, and it shows a list of all available output devices along with a "pair a new device" button.
A new clipboard popup
Google tweaked the screenshot functionality in Andriod 11 by adding an overlay that gives you a thumbnail preview, a share button, and an edit button. The company is now expanding this concept to clipboard content in Android 13. Now, every time you copy a text or an image, the new clipboard overlay will appear in the bottom left corner bearing a preview of the copied content along with an edit button. If the copied content contains any actionable information, then you'll see an additional button with an option to open it with an associated app. If you copy map coordinates, for instance, then you'll see a button to open that particular location in Google Maps.
Note: Even though the new clipboard popup feature was spotted in Android 13's DP2 build, it wasn't enabled until the beta 1 release in April 2022.
Wallpaper effects generation API
The wallpaper effects generation API is essentially a new device personalization feature that will allow users to apply various fun effects to their wallpapers. This is a work-in-progress feature for now, but we expect it to be ready for the final build later this year. It's hard to tell what this looks like or how it helps the users to customize their wallpapers because it's disabled for now. Notably, there's also a wallpaper dimming feature that's expected to ship with the final build. This particular feature will allow you to dim the brightness of the wallpaper without changing the device brightness itself. The WallpaperEffects API is open to OEMs, meaning we might end up seeing a wallpaper customization feature in custom Android skins too.
Control smart home devices without unlocking
Google added a Device Controls Quick Settings tile and a lock screen shortcut in Android 11 to let users control their smart home devices without opening an app. But to use those controls via the quick settings tile or the lock screen shortcut, users first had to unlock their devices. In Android 13, however, apps can let users control their smart home devices without having them unlock their devices. It's worth mentioning that this particular feature will not give users the option to select which Device Controls are available when their phone is locked. Google has added the isAuthRequired method to the Control class, and if it returns “true”, then users can interact with the control without authentication. Here's a quick video to show this particular API in action:
Note: The new “Control from locked device” toggle was rolled out for all users only with the Android 13 beta 1 release in April 2022.
Granular vibration slider
Android 13 comes with a granular vibration slider for different vibration scenarios including alarms, phone calls, notifications, and more. Many Android devices allow you to change the vibration intensity of phone calls and notifications, but there's no additional granularity. Additionally, you can also enable an option with which your device will vibrate before gradually ringing when you get a phone call.
A new search bar in Pixel launcher
The Pixel launcher that ships with Android 13 DP2 come with an updated search bar. Once enabled, this search bar can be accessed via both the home screen as well as the app drawer, and it can pull results for widgets, saved screenshots, Google Search, and more. This updated search bar is expected to make it a lot easier for people to search for items on their devices. Being able to search for an image without having to open the Google Photos app or the file directory, makes it that much more convenient. This new search bar is expected to ship with the final build of Android 13 or perhaps sooner in a Pixel Feature Drop.
Support for Wi-Fi 7
IEEE 802.11be or Wi-Fi 7 as we know it, is the next-generation of Wi-Fi standard that promises to deliver incredibly fast speeds and very low latency. The first set of Wi-Fi 7 products are expected to make its way into the market by the end of this year or early next year. Well, the good news is that Android 13 has added preliminary support for Wi-Fi 7. Android 13’s DeviceWiphyCapabilities class has 802.11be and 320MHz in its list of standards and supported channel width, respectively.
More Material You color options
Google introduced dynamic colors in Andriod 12 as one of the key features of its new Material You design language. Google's theme engine codenamed "Monet" generates a rich palette of pastel colors that are derived from your wallpapers. These colors are then applied to different parts of the system for a more unified look. The Material You engine already had a long list of colors in Android 12 but it looks like Google is making room for five additional styles called TONAL_SPOT, VIBRANT, EXPRESSIVE, SPRITZ, RAINBOW, and FRUIT_SALAD.
Bandwidth throttling option for developers
Android 13 is finally adding a highly-requested feature for developers who want to simulate slow network conditions for their apps. There's now a new setting in Android 13's developer options that lets developers set a bandwidth rate limit for all networks capable of providing Internet access. It's called "network download rate limit" and it has six different options to choose from, ranging from “no limit” to “15Mbps.”
Revamped screen saver
Google added screen savers to Android back in Android Jelly Bean. It's been a good few years but the screen saver never really took off nor did it receive a significant overhaul. That seems to be changing with Android 13 as the DP2 build seems to have introduced a lot of new screen saver-related codes. It appears as though Google is working on revamped screen savers that could display additional information overlays, similar to complications on Wear OS. Esper‘s Mishaal Rahman managed to enable the hidden complications. In addition to "Colors", "Clock", and "Photos" screen savers, you can also activate complications to see 'At A Glance' widget, date and time, weather, and battery info overlayed on top of the screen saver.
Multiple eSIM support
Android 13 DP2 build reportedly includes an implementation of Multiple Enabled Profiles (MEP) for enabling multiple SIM profiles on a single eSIM. This works by splitting the single physical data bus between the modem and eSIM chip into multiple logical interfaces that are multiplexed on a single physical interface. eSIM modules, in case you don't know, take up less space within the device, leaving more room inside the chassis for things like a larger battery, better camera hardware, and more. The new functionality could lead to wider eSIM support across phones but it may take a while as most carriers still don't support eSIM.
Game loading time improvements
Android 13 adds a new method called setGameState to the GameManager API that can be used to send a loading time hint to the power HAL to activate the new GAME_LOADING mode and boost CPU performance. While this may positively impact game loading times, it remains to be seen how OEMs will tune the CPU performance when the GAME_LOADING mode is active. It's worth pointing out that many OEMs have already implemented various optimizations to improve game loading times on their devices.
HDR video in Camera2API
The Camera2API allows the developers to check what camera features are available on a device and exposes granular camera features to apps. Google is adding more features to the Camera2API to make it even better. Android 13’s HAL allows smartphone makers to expose 10-bit video output to the Camera2 API. And in case an OEM device supports other HDR formats such as HDR10+ and Dolby Vision, the device maker can advertise the recommended profile to apps using the CameraCharacteristics#REQUEST_RECOMMENDED_TEN_BIT_DYNAMIC_RANGE_PROFILE constant. Additionally, it's worth mentioning that the Camera2 API also includes support for “stream use cases” to allow OEMs to optimize the camera performance in different streaming scenarios.
The device makers are required to implement the following stream use cases:
- PREVIEW for live viewfinder and in-app image analysis
- STILL_CAPTURE for still photo capture
- VIDEO_RECORD for recording video clips
- PREVIEW_VIDEO_STILL for one single stream used for viewfinder, video recording, and still capture.
- VIDEO_CALL for long-running video calls
DNS over HTTPS
Android 13 finally adds native support for DNS over HTTPS (DoH). A code change specific to the native DNS over HTTPS was first spotted back in September 2021. It's finally here now as a part of the Android 13 DP2 build. DNS over TLS uses TLS (also known as SSL) to encrypt traffic, while DNS over HTTPS uses HTTP or HTTP/2 protocols to send DNS queries and responses. One of the main advantages of using DoH over DoT is that the latter uses a dedicated port where anyone at the network level can see incoming and outgoing traffic. DoH, on the other hand, uses port 443, which is the standard port for HTTPS traffic. This means the requests and traffic sent over DoH can hide in with the rest of the HTTPS traffic, making it near impossible for attackers or network admins to monitor or block DoH queries.
Launch apps in split-screen from its notification
Users on the Android 13 DP2 build can now launch an app in split-screen multitasking mode directly from the notification panel. This can be done by long-pressing the notification and then dragging and dropping it to either half of the screen. This particular feature was first introduced in Android 12L, with which the company started to pay attention to Android on large-screen devices.
Better memory management to prevent app killings
Many Android devices, as you probably already know, struggle with memory management. This results in delayed notifications or apps being killed in the background. Some OEMs tune their software better to handle this issue, but many devices from manufacturers like Vivo greatly suffer. But it looks like Android 13 may fix this for good thanks to a feature called "Multi-Generational Least Recently Used” (or MGLRU)".
This particular feature achieves a couple of goals, including an overall decrease in out-of-memory (OOM) app killings. We wrote about the “Multi-Generational Least Recently Used” feature in detail back in April this year when we first heard about it making its way to Android, so be sure to check it out for more details.
Android 13 Beta 1: Announced features
Google exited the "developer preview" stage of Android 13 with the first release of Android 13 Beta 1 on April 26, 2022. The beta builds are more stable than the DP releases but you should still be wary about installing it on your daily driver. That being said, let's take a quick look at some of the officially announced features we saw with the arrival of the Android 13 beta 1 build:
More granular permissions for media file access
Currently, all the applications on your Android device can access the files on your phone’s storage with the help of READ_EXTERNAL_STORAGE permission. This permission, however, will allow the apps to access all kinds of media files on the storage. For instance, an audio-playing app will have access to your photos with this permission, which is quite unnecessary. But Google is changing this by introducing three new permissions with Android 13:
- READ_MEDIA_IMAGES (for images and photos)
- READ_MEDIA_VIDEO (for videos)
- READ_MEDIA_AUDIO (for audio files)
If a particular application. requests access to more than one media file type, then you'll see a single dialog for granting both permissions like this:
Anticipatory audio routing
Google has added a set of new audio route APIs in the AudioManager class to allow media apps to identify how their audio will be routed. The getAudioDevicesForAttributes() and the getDirectProfilesForAttributes() APIs can be used to gather a list of available devices to the specified audio and to check whether an audio stream can be played directly.
Android 13 Beta 1: Unannounced changes
Google's official Android 13 beta 1 announcement made it look like it went easy on the new features but a lot of new undocumented features were extracted from the new build. Here, take a look:
Do Not Disturb Mode is here to stay
The Android 13 DP2 build shipped with "Priority Mode" which was essentially a renamed version of "Do Not Disturb" mode. Turns out, Google didn't like the name because it ended up reverting the change with its Beta 1 build. There’s a chance that Priority Mode could return in a future Android 13 beta update, or it could be renamed in a future release of Android. For now, though, Do Not Disturb is here to stay.
New animation in media control
Android 13's DP1 build updated the design of the media controls under the quick settings. You can read more about it above in the Android 13 DP1: Unannounced changes section. Well, the beta 1 build comes with a bit of extra flair: a Squiggly progress bar.
Android 13 Beta 1 media animation (Credit: Mishaal Rahman)
New color and theming options to the Wallpaper & style app
Android 13 beta 1 adds several new colors and theming options to the Wallpaper & style app on Pixel devices. The updated beta 1 build includes four pages of wallpaper colors and basic colors, taking the total number of both wallpaper colors and basic colors to 16. In contrast, the Wallpaper & style app in the Android 13 Developer Preview 2 release only offered four colors each.
Screen resolution setting
Android 13 makes it easier to switch the resolution in the Settings app. The Android 13 beta 1 build adds a new “Screen resolution” page under Settings> “Display”. It goes without saying that this will only be available on supported devices that lets the user choose between FHD+ (1080p) or QHD+ (1440p). This is essentially an additional layer of customization that exists on top of the feature that lets you change the current refresh rate.
It's also worth mentioning that some custom skins of Android such as Samsung's One UI already have the option to change the current screen resolution.
No access to Accessibility APIs for sideloaded apps
Accessibility APIs, as you probably already know, are powerful tools that are intended for developers to help aid users with disabilities. But lately, we've been seeing a lot of malware such as FluBot taking advantage of those APIs for malicious intents. However, Google is cracking down on such malware by preventing sideloaded from accessing those APIs. That's right, any sideloaded apps from outside of an app store will not be able to have their accessibility services enabled.
When tapping the option to enable it, your device will show a pop-up stating “For your security, this setting is currently unavailable”.
TARE: The Android Resource Economy
Android 13 brings a new energy management feature that lets apps make the best use of the available battery life on your device. TARE primarily focuses on energy-use management on the device, with the feature working through AlarmManager and JobScheduler policies. TARE will essentially delegate “credits” to apps that they can then “spend” as payments on queuing tasks. The number of credits assigned to a particular app will depend on things like battery life.
This feature was originally spotted last year but Android 13 Beta 1 reportedly changes how TARE works under the hood. According to Mishaal Rahman of Esper, Google has changed how the Android Resource Credits are allocated to various apps. The "maximum circulation" of credits that limited how many credits could be allocated to all apps has now been removed. It has been replaced with a “consumption limit” that limits the credits that can be consumed across all apps within a single discharge cycle. In simple terms, your device will perform fewer actions if/when the battery levels are low.
Google has added a couple of other noteworthy features with the Android 13 beta 1 build, so be sure to check out our coverage to learn more about them.
Android 13 Beta 2: Announced features
Google released the second public beta build of Android 13 at Google I/O 2022. The Android 13 beta 2 build brings a couple of interesting features including predictive back gestures. Let's a look:
Security and Privacy settings on the same page
Google announced that it's introducing a unified Security & Privacy settings page in Android 13. This new page puts all the security and privacy settings under one roof to make it easier for people to find what they need. While this page was announced at Google I/O, it looks like it's not accessible in the beta 2 build. We'll keep an eye on this page and report/update this space once it goes live.
Android 13 Beta 2: Unannounced changes
As is the case with every other build of Android 13, the second public beta release also added a bunch of unannounced features to mix. Let's take a look:
Resource files specifying supported app languages
With the Android 13 beta 2 build, the developers can now specify what languages their apps can support so that users can choose languages on a per-app basis. You can learn more about using languages on a per-app basis in the Android 13 DP1 section above.
Predictive back gesture
Google is introducing "predictive back gestures" with Android 13 that allows users to preview the destination or other result of a back gesture before they complete it. This will enable you to decide whether or not you want to continue with the gesture or stay in the current view. App developers can also easily integrate this into their apps.
Once this particular feature is fully available to use, you can head over to Settings> System> Developer options to select Predictive back animations and see it in action.
Support for Bluetooth LE Audio’s broadcast
Android 13 beta 2 build adds support for Bluetooth LE Audio’s broadcast audio feature, which will essentially let users broadcast audio from supported devices to nearby users over Bluetooth. This is a great feature as other nearby devices can use Bluetooth to tune into your broadcast. Users who want to broadcast media will find an option broadcast media in the media output picker, whereas the ones who want to tune into other broadcasts will have to scan a QR code or enter the name and password for the broadcast.
Android TV's expanded picture-in-picture mode
Android TV has supported picture-in-picture mode for years now, but it's worth mentioning that Android 13 will be the first version that will allow developers to create expanded PiP windows. This will allow users to seamlessly change the size of a PiP window. Google didn't ship the expanded PiP with the beta 1 build, however, it's finally here along with a new docked mode that resizes the main app to allow PiP windows to be seated on the edges.
Gboard’s Emoji Kitchen gets new emojis
Google's Emoji Kitchen is one of our favorite features of the Gboard. In case you're wondering, it lets you combine two different emojis to create an entirely new one. There's no shortage of emojis in Gboard's Emoji Kitchen but the Android 13 Beta 2 offers support for four additional emojis, including paw prints, cherries, watermelon, and rock.
Android 13 Beta 2.1: bug fixes
The Android 13 Beta 2.1 is a minor release in comparison to the previous Developer Preview builds and the Beta updates. As such, the beta 2.1 update packs a few software fixes to improve the overall stability of the software.
Android 13 Beta 2.1 bug fixes
- Fixed an issue where typing in the search bar resulted in a blank list of suggestions.
- Fixed an issue where devices would crash and restart when turning on hotspot.
- Fixed an issue where a continuous call dialing sound could be heard in the background during a phone call.
- Fixed an issue where devices would crash and restart after disconnecting from Android Auto.
Android 13 Beta 3: Announced features
Google released the Android 13 Beta 3 build on June 8, 2022. As mentioned in the original platform roadmap, the third beta release brings Android 13 to the platform stability milestone. This means that “Android 13 has reached final internal and external APIs, final app-facing behaviors, and final non-SDK API lists (greylists).” Now let's take a quick look at some of the features that were officially announced with this build:
Since Android 13 has now hit the platform stability milestone, it's now ready for the developers to test their apps against. Google essentially wants all the developers to test their apps on a device running Android 13 beta 3 to ensure maximum compatibility. The developers are expected to target the new APIs and incorporate support for all the behavior changes. Google has, in fact, highlighted a couple of changes app developers should watch for while testing their apps on Android 13 beta 3 including things like the runtime permissions for notifications, clipboard preview, JobScheduler prefetch, and more.
Tablets and large-screens support
Additionally, Google has also highlighted that the developers should include tablets and other large-screen devices as part of their testing. This can either be done by setting up an Android emulator in Android Studio or using a compatible large-screen device, like the Lenovo Tab P12 Pro. A few changes highlighted by Google in its official announcement post are as follows:
- Multi-window mode: This mode is now enabled by default for all the apps, the company wants the developers to make sure their apps handle split-screen properly.
- Taskbar interaction: Google also wants the developers to check how their apps respond when viewed with the new taskbar on large screens. The taskbar that debuted with Android 13 DP2 will now be persistent on large screen devices.
- Media projection: The developers are expected to check how their apps respond to media projection for playback, streaming, or casting media on large screens.
You can check out our Android 13 Beta 3 coverage for a more detailed look at all the changes that are coming to tablets and large-screen devices.
Android 13 Beta 3: Unannounced changes
In addition to the new features and changes announced by Google in its official post, the new Android 13 Beta 3 build also includes a few undocumented changes. Here, check them out:
Prompt to review notification settings
One of the first things you'll notice after booting into the Android 13 Beta 3 build is a prompt to review notification settings. This helps users to understand how the new notification model works in Android 13, putting the end-users in charge of picking the apps that they want to see notifications from.
Web suggestions toggle in Search settings
Google's Pixel Launcher settings in Android 13 Beta 3 includes a "web suggestions" toggle. This can be found inside the Search your phone option inside the Home settings. When enabled, the Pixel Launcher will also show web results when typing in the search bar on the home screen or app drawer.
Per-app language feature push
Android 13 DP1 build introduced an option to enable per-app language preference to allow users to set their preferred language for each app. The app developers targeting Android 13 are expected to list the languages their apps actually support in the locales_config.xml resource file. As noted by Mishaal Rahman of Esper on Twitter, the apps that do not provide a locales_config.xml resource file will not be shown in the per-app language preferences page starting in the Android 13 Beta 3 build. While you can force the system to show all the apps, it goes to show how Google is pushing the developers targeting Android 13 to proactively list the supported languages.
New navigation bar mode called “kids mode”
There's now a new navigation bar mode in Android 13 called "kids mode" that can be enabled on large-screen devices. It features different drawables and a new layout for the back and home icons on the navigation bar. Notably, the recent apps icon is missing on this mode, perhaps for a good reason. What's more interesting is that the navigation bar is kept visible when apps enter immersive mode. As a part of the improvements in the Android 13 Beta 3 build, they now stay persistent on the screen even while playing videos in full-screen mode. However, the buttons do fade away when they haven't been pressed for a few seconds. Here, take a look:
Android 13 Beta 3.1: Restores the Android Beta Feedback app
Just a couple of days after rolling out the Android 13 Beta 3 build, Google pushed a minor patch in the form of an Android 13 Beta 3.1 update. This version of the software restored the Android Beta Feedback app, which was found to be missing for some in the third beta update. The Android Feedback app is critical to beta releases as it's the best means of submitting bugs, requesting features, and other feedback that you may have with regard to the current beta or Developer Preview build.
Android 13 Beta 3.2: Major bug fixes
Google rolled out the Android 13 Beta 3.2 build to eligible devices on June 16, 2022. This particular build was packed with some major bug fixes to improve the overall stability of the software.
Android 13 Beta 3.2: Bug fix changelog:
- Fixed an issue where the back gesture wasn’t working in some apps.
- Fixed an issue where the At a glance settings page would collapse inconsistently when scrolling.
- Fixed an issue where some apps would crash instantly on opening.
- Fixed an issue where the microphone would turn on and off unexpectedly during unrelated use of the device.
- Fixed an issue where the Google Photos app would crash frequently.
Android 13 Beta 3.3: bug fixes
The Android 13 Beta 3.3 is yet another incremental build that was pushed as an extension to the third beta branch of Android 13. This update was pushed on June 27, 2022, with the build number TPB3.220617.002. You can find the changelog to this particular build in our dedicated Android 13 Beta 3.3 post in which we've highlighted each fix in detail with some other relevant information.
Android 13 Beta 4: The release candidate build
The Android 13 Beta 4 -- released on July 13, 2022 -- is the release candidate build for both Google Pixel devices and the Android Emulator. This particular build marks the end of the road for Android 13's pre-release beta software, so it focuses more on bug fixes and polishes instead of pushing new features. Here are a few key changes which Google highlighted with the Android 13 Beta 4 release:
- Runtime permission for notifications: The latest version of Android introduces a new runtime permission for sending notifications from an app.
- Clipboard preview: Google noted that the developers must ensure their app hides sensitive data in Android 13’s new clipboard preview, such as passwords or credit card information.
- JobScheduler prefetch: JobScheduler now tries to anticipate the next time an app will be launched and will run any associated prefetch jobs ahead of that time. Google advised developers to test if their prefetch jobs function works as expected with this release.
Android 13: Final release
Following months of developer previews and beta releases, Google finally released the stable Android 13 build for Google Pixel smartphones on August 15, 2022. This is the final build of Android 13 that will eventually make its way to other Android flagships later this year and in 2023. Google didn't add any new features to this particular build because it's essentially a refined version of the builds we received in the past.
The initial public Android 13 rollout, however, doesn't mark the end of the Android 13 beta program. Google plans to continue testing fixes and improvements by sharing its Quarterly Platform Release (QPR) builds with those who are already enrolled in the Android 13 beta program. The company will release Android 13 QPR1, Android 13 QPR2, and Android 13 QPR3 builds before previewing Android 14 next year. We've highlighted the QPR build changelogs below.
Android 13 QPR1 Beta 1
The first Android 13 13 QPR1 Beta build was released for supported Pixel devices on September 8, 2022. This build came bearing some fixes and improvements that weren't a part of the public build at that time. Here's a quick look at the Android 13 QPR1 Beta 1 changelog:
- Fixed an issue for some devices that mistakenly caused a user’s emergency contact to be dialed from the lock screen when the device was in their pocket.
- Fixed various issues for Pixel 6a devices that made it difficult for users to unlock their devices or to set up Fingerprint Unlock.
- Fixed an issue that caused the system UI to crash in certain cases, such as gesturing from the edge of the screen to go back.
- Fixed an issue that sometimes caused the 5G icon to be displayed instead of the 5G UW icon, even when the affected device was already successfully connected to a 5G UW network.
Android 13 QPR1 Beta 2
The Android 13 QPR1 Beta 2 was released on October 5 for Google's supported Pixel devices like the Pixel 4a, Pixel 4a 5G, Pixel 5, Pixel 5a, and Pixel 6. Google is yet to share the Android 13 QPR1 Beta 2 changelog highlighting the fixes and improvements, so we'll update this space once we have more clarity on that.
Android 13 QPR1 Beta 3
Google released the Android 13 QPR1 Beta 3 on Oct. 20, 2022, and it's the first QPR1 beta build to hit the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro. In addition to a bunch of bug fixes that we're used to seeing in these beta releases, the QPR1 Beta 3 brought a couple of new features to the table.
- Clear Calling for Google Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro: Google's promised Clear Calling feature didn't make it to new Pixel phones at launch, but it's here as a part of the QPR1 Beta 3.
- Battery Share toggle: The QPR1 Beta 3 build adds a Battery Share toggle to make it easier for you to have more control over the reverse charging feature.
Google also pushed out a relatively smaller Android 13 QPR1 Beta 3.1 build on Nov. 7, 2022. It was intended to crush a few notorious bugs, and you can learn more about it in the Android Developer Platform Release notes.
Android 13 QPR2 Beta 1
The first beta for Google's second Android 13 Quarterly Platform Release (QPR) started rolling out on Dec. 13, 2022. It was rolled out to all the supported Pixel smartphones the same day, including the new Pixel 7 and the Pixel 7 Pro. One of the highlights of this particular build is that it enabled 1080p support on the Pixel 6 Pro.
The industry experts quickly found out about this particular change, and you can see the commit in the official data released by Google. This essentially allows the Google Pixel 6 Pro owners to switch to 1080p from 1440p display resolutions without relying on a custom kernel. The version T2B1.221118.006 release comes in at 192MB and is now available to those enrolled in the program to receive the beta. It has its fair share of bugs, which you can learn more about by heading over to Google's official release notes.
Android 13 QPR2 Beta 2
Google kickstarted 2023 with yet another Android 13 Quarterly Platform Release (QPR) beta update. It shipped out the QPR2 Beta 2 update to eligible Pixel phones (Pixel 4a and newer) on Jan. 9 in the form of software version T2B2.221216.006. It focuses primarily on bug fixes for problems spotted in the previous beta release. We didn't get any new features, but the update shipped with the January 2023 security patch. Here's the full list of changes:
- Fixed an issue with the System UI that sometimes caused the Home screen to become unresponsive.
- Fixed an issue where, after switching back to Normal video capture mode from Slow Motion mode in the Google Camera app, the app continued capturing slow-motion video if the capture speed was changed between 1/8x and 1/4x while in Slow Motion mode.
Additionally, the QPR2 Beta 2 update bumps the Google Play Services version from 22.39.10 to 22.41.13.
Android 13 QPR2 Beta 2.1
Google pushed out a follow-up update to QPR2 Beta 2 with some useful bug fixes. The Beta 2.1 patch was made available for all compatible Pixel devices in the form of update T2B2.221216.008 on Jan. 20. The most notable bug fix in this update addressed an issue that sometimes prevented the devices from connecting to 5G even if the network was available. It also tackled an issue where an encrypted Bluetooth connection would remain engaged indefinitely. You can check out the release notes for this particular update over at Google's developer portal.