Android 13 Is Almost Here (But Probably Not for Your Phone)

Android 13 logo.

Google has been testing the next release of Android for most of this year, known as Android 13. Now the final beta version has arrived, taking us one step closer to the completed update.

Android 13 Beta 4 is now available for download on select Google Pixel devices, which Google says is the last testing update before Android 13 is officially completed. The final stable update is “just a few weeks away,” and just like the other betas, the new Beta 4 update is mostly intended for developers who need to test apps and games on Android 13.

Much like last month’s Beta 3, this update doesn’t have any notable changes or new features. Google has been focused on fixing bugs and security vulnerabilities ahead of the final release.

Android 13 focuses on security and privacy enhancements, similar to Android 12 and 11. There’s a new runtime permission for notifications, so it’s easier for you to reject notifications from certain apps, and access to local files has been split across three new permissions (representing images/photos, video, and audio). The media player has also been updated, and tablets have a few more optimizations following the improvements in Android 12L.

Even though Google will release Android 13 in a few weeks, there’s still the question of when it will actually roll out to popular phones and tablets. Google doesn’t directly control updates for Android devices, excluding the company’s own Pixel phones — it’s up to the manufacturer (Samsung, Motorola, etc.) to update their own devices with Google’s latest code.

Samsung has been quicker with major updates, as last year’s Android 12 update only took a few months to reach the Galaxy S21 series. Most other companies aren’t as fast, so if previous releases are any indication, many phones and tablets could have to wait until later this year or sometime in 2023.

Source: Android Developers Blog

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