Android 4.4.Kit Kat 4

Android 4.4 KitKat – Bluetooth can now Control System Volume

October 31, 2013 - Written By Cory McNutt

Today, Google introduced us to the KitKat 4.4, that is Android, on the new Nexus 5 smartphone, that use the plain vanilla version of its operation system with no “pretty skins” over top of it, hiding its real interbeauty.  And while Android 4.4 KitKat is only found on the Nexus 5 device at this time, it will only be a matter of time before it trickles down on to other devices running 4.2 or 4.3 Jelly Bean. In fact, HTC just announced that it would have Android 4.4 KitKat on its HTC One within 90 days and on its Google Play Edition in just 15 days!  Let us hope the other manufacturers will follow suite and push it out as fast as they can.  Let us also hope that the carriers, such as Verizon, do not hold it up too long doing their own “quality” testing.

With the release of Android 4.4 KitKat, we are privy to a wide range of enhancements in our devices ability to handle more and more tasks, making it easier for the developers to write applications that perform certain tasks much easier, or to include features that simply were not available before.  One of these enhancements is in the Bluetooth area – as part of an extension to Bluetooth AVRCP 1.3, Bluetooth audio devices can now directly control Android’s system volume.

This may not affect you personally, but if you use a lot of Bluetooth headsets or speakers, you know what a welcomed relief this will be.  Because the device you are trying to hook up with has its own volume control, it can be a real pain to try and get the volume adjusted just right using both the device’s volume as well as your phone’s own volume control.  This simple addition will allow you complete volume adjustment from your smartphone or tablet…let’s end the madness!  Remember, this will only work with Android 4.4 and using Google’s Bluedroid Bluetooth stack.  Many devices run a modified version of the stack which will not work…however, Nexus devices and GPE handsets will be able to use the feature as soon as they are updated with Android 4.4.

Let us know if you get the Nexus 5 in the comments or on Google+ and if you have explored the new Bluetooth profiles.