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Android 13: Everything You Need To Know – Updated August 2022

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Android 13 is here. On August 15, 2022, Google pushed Android 13 over to AOSP, which means that it is finished. We may see some additional updates over the next year, but for the most part, Android 13 is done. That also means that Google Pixel phones will start getting the update today. We expect other smartphone makers like OnePlus, Samsung and Motorola to start pushing out Android 13 before the end of the year.

So what is new in Android 13? Well, Google is focusing on privacy and security once again. But in this article, we’re going to tell you everything you need to know about Android 13.

When will Android 13 be available?

The final version of Android 13 should be available after August. Typically, Google would say “in Q3” which means between July 1 and September 30. However, last year, the stable version of Android 12 did not launch until October. So now we are seeing the final beta hitting in July, with final release after that. Here’s when the final release of each major version of Android has launched in recent years.

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Android ReleaseRelease Date
Android 8 OreoAugust 21, 2017
Android 9 PieAugust 6, 2018
Android 10September 3, 2019
Android 11September 8, 2020
Android 12October 4, 2021
Android 13August 15, 2022

How many developer previews and betas will there be?

There will be two developer previews, and four betas before the final release later this year. Now this is subject to change. Google could find more issues with Android 13 and end up pushing out another beta or two. This happened in both 2020 and 2021.

Google pushes out new betas about once a month. Typically the second Wednesday of the month, while the security patch updates roll out the first Monday of the month. In recent years, we have also seen Google pushing out updates to betas within the month, for some big bugs that needed to be fixed.

  • Developer Preview 1 released on February 10, 2022
  • Developer Preview 2 released on March 17, 2022
  • Beta 1 released on April 26, 2022
  • Beta 2 released on May 11, 2022
  • Beta 2.1 released on May 26, 2022
  • Beta 3 released on June 8, 2022
  • Beta 4 released on July 13, 2022
  • Final release (pushed to Pixels, released to AOSP) on August 15, 2022

What devices will be compatible with the Android 13 developer previews?

The developer previews are available for the following Google Pixel devices:

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  • Google Pixel 4
  • Google Pixel 4 XL
  • Google Pixel 4a
  • Google Pixel 4a 5G
  • Google Pixel 5
  • Google Pixel 5a
  • Google Pixel 6
  • Google Pixel 6 Pro
  • Google Pixel 6a

Unfortunately, that means that the Pixel 3 series likely won’t be getting the Android 13 update. At least not officially from Google. We will likely see some developers make a custom ROM for the Pixel 3 to make it run on Android 13.

Android 13 to logo from dev site DG AH 2022

What phones will run the Android 13 beta?

Ahead of the first beta, we know which Pixel phones will get it, but are unsure which third-party phones will get access to the update. Last year, smartphones from ASUS, OnePlus, OPPO, TCL, Vivo, Xiaomi, ZTE, Sharp, Tecno and Realme were compatible with the Android 12 betas.

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Here’s the list (so far) of devices that will be compatible with the Android 13 beta.

  • Google Pixel 4
  • Google Pixel 4 XL
  • Google Pixel 4a
  • Google Pixel 4a 5G
  • Google Pixel 5
  • Google Pixel 5a
  • Google Pixel 6
  • Google Pixel 6 Pro
  • Google Pixel 6a

What dessert name does Android 13 have?

Even though Google no longer announces dessert names for new versions of Android, they are still used internally. Android 13 would use the letter T for its dessert, and according to some code that’s been found in the developer previews, it looks like Android 13 will be called Tiramisu internally.

What is Tiramisu? It’s an Italian dessert consisting of layers of sponge cake soaked in coffee and brandy or liqueur with powdered chocolate and mascarpone cheese.

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But this will never be confirmed as Google stopped doing dessert names publicly. And that was likely due to the fact that Android 10 was Q and there’s really no desserts that start with that letter.

What features and changes are there in Android 13?

So far, we’ve only had two developer previews, which haven’t shown a whole lot of features just yet. That’s pretty common for Google. It like to keep the majority of new features for Google I/O where it will announce the first beta for Android 13. But we do know some of the features that are coming to Android 13.

Enhanced Material You

With Android 12 last year, Google announced Material You. This is the new theming engine for Android, which will change up the theme of your phone based on your wallpaper. With Android 12, the colors were pretty limited. But with Android 13, we’re going to be getting even more tones for Material You.

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android 13 pixel AH

In Android 13, we’re getting even more colors that are extracted from your wallpaper, but perhaps more importantly, we are also getting the ability to theme icons that are not Google apps. So whether developers have updated their apps to support Material You or not, you can theme that icon. Which is going to make your home screen look a lot more uniform.

New notifications permission

Privacy and permissions has been a big part of every Android release in the past few years, and it’s getting some more changes with Android 13. This year, Google is debuting a new Notifications permission. And it is exactly what it sounds like.

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There’s a new “POST_NOTIFICATIONS”  feature in Android 13. And it does exactly what you’d think. Now, apps have to ask your permission to send you notifications. This might sound a little tedious, but it means that you can easily choose which apps you get notifications from. Like you probably don’t need notifications from Google Maps about posting your pictures and reviewing places. This also means you can choose how notifications are sent to you for each app, on the first install. Like should they be priority? Or silent?

Extra Photo app notification

Now for the bad news, this is an API requirement, so what does that mean? Well, that means Google won’t enforce it right away. Google won’t enforce it until mid-to-late 2023 at the soonest.

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Phantom Process Killer

This is a feature that was actually introduced last year with Android 12. But it will likely become a toggle in Quick Settings with Android 13.

So what is the Phantom Process Killer? Well, it’s what it sounds like. It’s basically an undercover cop that is able to keep tabs on all apps running int he background, and allows only up to 32 forked child processes in total to run in the background. So it limits the number of things an app can do when its not in the foreground. This will prevent background apps from going rogue and killing your battery a lot sooner than it should.

New and improved Media Player

Google has also redesigned the media player once again. It now will tailor its look and feel based on the music or podcast that you are listening to. So if you are listening to music, the media player will spotlight the album artwork and has a playback bar that dances as you progress through a song. This even works for media being played through Chrome on your Android device.

Screen Shot 2022 08 15 at 9 05 23 AM

It’s a really nice change to the media player, and it looks incredible. But we still miss the fullscreen album art that Android used to do.

Enhanced media library permissions & Enhanced clipboard

In Android 13, you will also be able to choose which photos and videos that apps have access to. So they will no longer have access to your entire media library. It might sound like a minor thing, but this is a big deal for privacy.

Screen Shot 2022 08 15 at 9 08 22 AM

Now, in Android 13, you can also prevent unwanted access to your clipboard. So if you copy sensitive data, like your email address, phone number or login credentials on your device, Android will automatically clear the clipboard history after a period of time.

And many more features

Android 13 actually has hundreds of features coming to your Android device. Though a lot of them are under-the-hood changes and API changes for developers. There’s still quite a few changes here. Google has actually outlined 13 changes coming in Android 13 on their blog post here.

How can I download Android 13?

You can download the factory image or sideload the OTA image to your Pixel device. The factory images are about 2.4GB in size, while the OTA images are around 2GB in size. Both of them are pretty large, and the OTA image will be simpler to install, but it might be a better idea to flash the entire factory image, that way older apps and files on your phone don’t mess up the install.

We do have a tutorial on how to update to Android 13 here.

However, we would recommend waiting for the OTA to hit your device, as it is much simpler. And now that Android 13 is out, it’s going to be a whole lot faster and easier. Once the OTA hits your device, just hit “update” and it’ll update within the next few minutes. This update will take longer than usual, since it is a new version of Android and the cache needs to be rebuilt.