The world’s most fashionable cellular working system has one other new model improve within the works—Android 14—which guarantees enhancements to privateness, safety, and efficiency. Google, the corporate that manages the OS, has additionally made it a degree to enhance the expertise for bigger screens, like tablets and folding smartphones. Android 14 continues to be in growth and is at present solely out there as a developer preview, however the ultimate model will doubtless land in your telephone within the fall. Right here, we break down the options which have caught our eye thus far, and we’ll be including extra as the corporate shares further new options over the approaching months.
If you happen to’re questioning, Google formally dropped the alphabetical Android dessert names with Android 10, however the variations are nonetheless codenamed internally with the identical system. Final 12 months’s Android 13 was Tiramisu, so this 12 months’s “U” letter dessert known as Upside Down Cake. Let’s dig in.
How you can Obtain and Set up Android 14
Google has launched two developer previews of Android 14 thus far. These previews allow builders to check the forthcoming model of the cellular working system, find out about any new options, and put together their apps or video games to work with it correctly. We don’t suggest putting in Android 14 but as a result of it’s nonetheless buggy and unstable and it’s a must to bounce by a couple of hoops. It will not be lengthy earlier than Google releases the official beta, and we suggest ready for that as a substitute.
If you’re decided to strive the preview, you’ll need to have a Google Pixel smartphone (Pixel 4A 5G or later) and should unlock the bootloader, which is able to wipe it, erasing all the things. In case you have a spare telephone you need to strive that with, listed below are the official Android Developers’ instructions. Ensure to back up your Android phone first.
Prime Android 14 Options
We’re highlighting our favourite options and enhancements thus far, however there may be hypothesis about what’s going to make the ultimate minimize. You may be taught extra at Google’s developer site. From what we have seen, Android 14 is basically wanting like a small improve over its predecessor, with no main developments.
Improved Battery Life
There is no such thing as a headline characteristic right here, however Google has put some severe effort into enhancing the effectivity of Android to scale back energy drain. Adjustments to how the working system handles background duties, downloads, and uploads, alongside a couple of different tweaks, ought to allow Android house owners to squeeze a bit extra life from their telephone batteries. It additionally appears as if the choice to verify “display time since final full cost” within the battery settings menu (eliminated in Android 12) is again.
Bigger Fonts and Smarter Scaling
Switching to a bigger font in Android 13 was restricted to 130 p.c on Google’s Pixel telephones, however Android 14 means that you can scale fonts as much as 200 p.c. To stop wonky layouts, the system makes use of nonlinear scaling, which suggests any phrases which can be already scaled up (akin to headings) will not develop bigger, making the textual content extra readable for folks with vision impairment.
Android 14 lets you activate digicam flashes and display flashes for incoming notifications. This has been out there on different Android smartphones (like Samsung units) and iPhones for years, nevertheless it hasn’t been baked into the working system itself. You may activate one or the opposite, or each, and select the colour your show will flash. Primarily designed to help people with hearing loss, it may well come in useful for anybody who does not need their telephone to make a noise or buzz with each incoming notification.
Higher Help for Massive Screens
The very first thing Google introduced within the preliminary developer preview was assist for builders attempting to construct apps that adapt gracefully to totally different display sizes. With extra instruments and design recommendation out there for builders, we are able to count on apps that work nicely throughout smartphones, folding telephones, and tablets. This is able to mirror what Apple has executed to make its app ecosystem transition seamlessly from iPhone to iPad to MacBook.
Proscribing Picture and Video Entry
If you’re uncomfortable with the all-or-nothing nature of granting an app entry to your photographs and movies, you’ll be happy to be taught that Android 14 provides an possibility to pick out the particular photographs and movies it’s allowed to entry. Apple launched a similar feature in iOS 14.
Since malware tends to focus on older variations of Android to keep away from safety enhancements in newer variations, Android 14 will not allow you to set up older apps from Android 5.1 and earlier. There are a couple of different behind-the-scenes tweaks to enhance safety, however maybe most notable is improved assist for authentication with passkeys enabling biometric login as a substitute of utilizing passwords for extra apps.
Whether or not you favor the temperature in Celsius or Fahrenheit, Monday or Sunday as the beginning of your week, or particular calendars or numerals, you may set these systemwide in Android 14 and they’ll persist by backup and restore. There may be additionally improved assist for gendered languages like French, and higher language customization primarily based on area.
Satellite tv for pc Connectivity
There was some buzz about satellite connectivity for phones for some time now, particularly since Apple debuted Emergency SOS via Satellite with the iPhone 14 final 12 months. Help for such connectivity in Android 14 was confirmed by this tweet from Google’s senior vp for Android, Hiroshi Lockheimer. Exactly what this can imply continues to be unclear, nevertheless it might convey higher connectivity to distant areas that at present lack cell service.
Predictive Again Gestures
Google has not formally introduced this, however the newest developer preview includes predictive back gestures, which afford you a glimpse of the display a swipe-back gesture will take you to. It isn’t at present apparent the place a again swipe will take you in Android; generally it’s the dwelling display, generally a earlier display or an app. This can hopefully clear issues up.
People with two accounts in the identical app will admire this one. A second occasion of an app lets you use two accounts concurrently. Some smartphone producers supply methods to do that with choose apps, and there are workarounds, however an official Android possibility within the settings menu will doubtless work higher. That is one thing Google is only testing proper now, and it might not make the ultimate Android 14 launch.
Well being Join
You would possibly use one app in your good scales, one other for working, and one more to trace your sleep. Google’s Health Connect app provides a approach to centralize your well being and health information and share it throughout totally different apps and providers, although it’s nonetheless in beta. There’s hypothesis that the app might come preinstalled on all Android 14 units.
Improved Share Choices
The share menu in Android has lengthy been inconsistent throughout totally different Android units and apps. Android 14 does not assure an enchancment, however there’s an opportunity Google may standardize and enhance on the present mixture of share sheets that pop up once you attempt to share something. It is on our want record.
The Android 14 Timeline
Android 14 is at present in developer preview. We’ll doubtless hear an amazing deal extra about new options throughout Google I/O, the corporate’s developer convention that takes place on Could 10. Anticipate an official beta to land quickly after (if not the identical day) and months of beta releases till Google unveils the ultimate model in late August or early September. Pixel telephones are normally first to get the replace; you may should verify your gadget’s software program coverage to see whether or not and once you’ll get it.