Credit: Joe Hindy / Android Authority
- Google is testing the ability to clone apps in Android 14.
- This would allow you to have two instances of one app with a different account signed into each one.
- This feature is not active in Android 14 DP1, but could be “switched on” in future releases.
Some Android OEMs offer an app cloning feature. They have different names and slightly different features, but the core principle is the same: you can have two instances of one app, each having a separate account. This could allow you to, for example, be logged into one social network with two accounts simultaneously. All you need to do is open the correct app to access the account you want.
Now, it looks like Google is toying with the idea of baking a similar function right into Android 14. Thanks to some code sleuthing from Mishaal Rahman at XDA-Developers, we know that you can access a developer flag in the first developer preview of Android 14. Flipping this flag turns on a “Cloned Apps” feature within Android settings.
From there, it works much like other services of this type. You can create two instances of one application and log into each one with different accounts.
Unfortunately, since this is a work-in-progress feature, it is very limited. You need to define the apps you want to clone using developer tools, which is a huge barrier for the general user. Also, the system doesn’t adequately differentiate the apps once you’ve set them up, so you could mistakenly open the wrong account, which is annoying.
Generally, features like these get hashed out in the developer preview phase and then either get fixed up or eliminated. Considering evidence of this feature has existed since Android 12 and Google is now refining it, that does suggest we could see this in the stable Android 14 release. However, it’s very early days now, so things could change.