The first public beta of Android 13 is now available for anyone with a compatible Pixel device to download and try out, the search giant announced today. Its release comes ahead of Google’s annual developer conference next month when the company is expected to fully detail its plans for the update — due for release later this year.
For end users, the most interesting features are those that have already appeared in Android 13’s initial two developer previews. There’s support for Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) Audio, a new photo picker that lets you restrict which of your photos an app is able to access, new app icon theming options, and a new permission that could cut down on notification spam.
In contrast, the new features for this public beta are much more developer-focused, like changes to the app permission for accessing shared media files in local storage. In a blog post, Google VP of engineering Dave Burke says the permission will now be specific to the type of media an app needs to access — images, video, or audio — rather than simply asking for permission to access all files.
Keystore and KeyMint, the parts of Android that can handle cryptographic keys, have been updated to provide more informative error codes. There are also new APIs for audio playback.
For more information on how to sign up for and download the beta, check out Google’s Android 13 developer site. Anyone already running the developer preview should automatically receive the new beta.