Google launched the major Android update – Android 13, and the latest Android version is shipping to only pixel devices right now. This time Google has not made significant changes as it did with Android 12 with its OS personalization, privacy, and much more.
Android Tiramisu, aka Google Android 13, is focused more on user-facing features, functions, themes, privacy, security, and Android developers’ productivity. Google has enhanced the capabilities to better enable an ultimate personalized user experience.
Let us explore Android 13 features in detail.
#1 Personalization The Way You Want
Material You was the major overhaul of Android 12. Google has refined certain aspects of it with a new look and style. You can customize the home screen and lock screen of your smartphone by setting the wallpaper of your choice and changing the Android app theme, color, and language of each app. Let’s see how you can better personalize your phone.
New Themed Icons
Make your home screen unique by customizing your app icons with the tints and colors of your phone wallpaper or theme. This is applicable to all Google apps as well as non-Google apps. You can create a uniform design for your home screen by dipping most of your apps into the same theme.
To customize your smartphone, tap and hold on to your home screen, Select “Wallpaper & style,” and turn on themed icons.
You will see a beautiful color palette to pick from. There are 16 different color themes for a single wallpaper. This enables you to set the user interface without changing your wallpaper.
Tailored Look of Media Player
Experience a revamped look of your media player that puts music or podcast art on full display and a dancing playback bar. When you play music, you will see the album art and playback bar dancing as you progress further. This works as well when you play via Chrome.
Per-app Language Preferences
This is one of the best Android 13 features for those who know and speak multiple languages and want to use the app in a language other than the system language. Android 13 has added a new panel in Settings called “App Langauge.”
You can set specific languages for individual apps in Settings, i.e., you can set “Google Maps” app language in your native regional language and set “Chrome” language as English (United States). Use your apps in different languages the way you want.
To customize app language, head to Settings >Languages & input > App Languages > Change the language of each app based on your needs
#2 Stay Protected With Updated Privacy & Security Features
From the moment you update your device with Android 13, you will see more privacy controls to protect the information of your apps.
No More All Media Access
Google has added a new system of Photo Picker that enables users to protect local and cloud-based media files, including photos and videos. Simply put, you do not need to share entire media files when you use any app. Now, with the Android 13 update, you can select specific images or videos that you want to share with a particular app. More control is on your hands now.
All Clear Clipboard History
Same privacy update with the clipboard. When you copy and paste any personal data like mobile number, email address, or login credentials, Android will automatically send an alert and clear the clipboard history after a period of time to prevent unwanted access.
Permissions on Notifications
Keep notifications of all apps under your control. You will get notifications from those apps you ask for. The new apps you download from the Play Store need permission to send notifications.
#3 Enhanced Device Experience
Google did major changes related to daily user experience only in the Android Tiramisu update and has come up with updated Android 13 features as mentioned below –
Messaging App Streaming
With the Android 13 update, you can send messages even if your phone is out of reach. That means you will be able to use your messaging app directly on your Chromebook to send and receive messages whenever you are working on your laptop and don’t want to interrupt your workflow with your phone.
Cross-device Copy and Paste Content
You can copy the content from your phone like a website URL, text, picture, or video and paste it onto your connected or nearby device such as a laptop or tablet.
Enhanced Spatial Audio
Enjoy an immersive listening experience with Spatial Audio that enables you to enjoy the sound based on the movement of your head using the head-tracking enabled headphones. Android 13 supports Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) audio that provides better sound quality and allows you to broadcast your audio to multiple devices simultaneously.
Multi-tasking with Tablet
With the Android 13 update, Google redesigned the tablet taskbar, allowing users to view all apps simultaneously. With drag and drop functionality, you can work on a split-screen view from the taskbar. If you are using the tablet for writing or drawing, then you will have to register your palm and stylus pen as separate touches, reducing the number of accidental stray marks.
Furthermore, we all know that core user interfaces are part of every update, so you will find a few tweaks and turns for a cohesive experience on primary interfaces apart from the above-mentioned top Android 13 features. With the Android 13 update, you will likely encounter the following user-facing changes in your Google Pixel phone –
- Pill-shaped buttons in Settings
- Battery saver raised to 10% from 5%
- Receive a high battery usage notification in the Settings section
- Redesigned Vibration menu with additional options
- A new menu with combined display size and text
- Redesigned screen saver menu
- Predictive back gestures
- Improved hyphenation performance
- A quick tap with a flashlight toggle option
- Dark theme in color and motion settings
- Altered Swipe unlock registration and entry
- A new menu consisting of privacy and security
- Updated Pixel Launcher with multiple layouts
- Taskbar adds extra slots – 6-icon slots
- A new app drawer button for big screens and tablets
- Power menu and Settings shortcut at the bottom-right of the Quick Settings panel
Google did major UI/UX-related changes in Android 12 with Material You. The latest Android OS update has emphasized under-the-hood enhancements only. So, the Android 13 update is not as rich as Android 12. Instead, it provides more stable, consistent, and revamped daily experiences.
It is available for Google Pixel devices only. The rest Android devices like Samsung Galaxy, OnePlus, Oppo, Vivo, Asus, iQOO, HMD (Nokia phones), Motorola, Realme, Sony, Tecno, Xiaomi, and more, will be able to update their OS later this year. Stay tuned for more updates!
Pritam Barhate, with an experience of 14+ years in technology, heads Technology Innovation at Mobisoft Infotech. He has a rich experience in design and has been a consultant for a variety of industries and startups. At Mobisoft Infotech, he primarily focuses on technology resources and develops the most advanced solutions.