Google will soon be taking the dialer in its Android Open Source Project (AOSP) to a public development model and bringing a substantial update along with it. That's based on a commit XDA Developers recently discovered for the AOSP Dialer in Google Git and should be good news for anybody who has been lamenting the amount of work the company puts into its more widely used Android OS as compared to AOSP. For those who don't already know, AOSP serves as an underpinning for the Android OS most users get when they buy an Android device. Other users choose to use AOSP for a variety of reasons, including simply to avoid using Google services. AOSP is also used by ROM developers and others in creating custom versions of Android for those who prefer to root their devices.
Google is reportedly updating Dialer to version 13 - up from version 10. That means it will be receiving some of the features users have been waiting for, including a feature that gives users a better way to control their device while on a call. That's thanks to the addition of a floating UI feature allowing AOSP purists to control a phone call, without having to implement a workaround or install Gapps on top of AOSP. With the Dialer moving public, it should also see more frequent updates and improvements instead of depending on Google to update AOSP manually, each time a major release of Android OS happens. In fact, according to the Google Git, "subsequent changes, changes will be exported on a per-commit basis." That could mean AOSP users will even get some new features in advance since the changes will appear when they are committed instead of with the next big Android OS update, depending on how frequently their ROM is updated or their willingness to install AOSP when commits are pushed.
Google appears to be putting extra effort into AOSP over the last year. In April, the company also implemented a Material Design interface to bring more of its projects into aesthetic consistency, as well as making navigating the AOSP site much easier. Whether or not the company continues to push more of AOSP's source code toward that goal remains to be seen but this is certainly a good start.