Android 13, the latest major Android OS update, is out now across compatible Google Pixel devices, with other manufacturers’ phones to follow later in the year.
If you have a Pixel 4 or later, you’re able to get the latest update, which comes with a raft of new features. Ranging from expanded privacy controls, more individualised language features, and increased ways to tweak your phone’s aesthetic, Android 13’s additions have plenty of variety.
Android 13 feature highlights
Along with the Android 13 announcement, Google highlighted updates to the Material You experience. Now, Android users have even more visual customisation options to play with. If you like a colour-coordinated phone, you can now tweak third-party apps to display in your chosen wallpaper and colour theme.
Bilingual users also benefit from Android 13, thanks to new per-app settings. You can change language preferences according to specific apps. This means you can use apps in a different language to the system settings, helpful for anyone uses multiple chat apps to contact friends and family abroad.
Similar to recent iOS iterations, Android 13 lets you be more selective with media sharing permissions. Now, you can choose the specific photos and videos you want to grant an app access to, instead of your entire media library. Additionally, apps now require you to opt-in to send notifications, as opposed to enabling them from the get-go.
Another nice privacy feature reduces the chance of accidentally sharing sensitive information. When copying a password or private contact information to paste elsewhere, Android will clear your clipboard automatically after a while.
For multi-Android device users, Android 13 introduces the ability to access and send messages on Chromebook, provided your phone is within Bluetooth range. Plus, you’ll be able to copy and paste content between Android devices. For example, you can copy a URL or an image on a tablet, and then paste it on your phone, and vice versa.
Speaking of Bluetooth connectivity, Android 13 uses Bluetooth Low Energy Audio, resulting in better quality and lower latency when broadcasting sound to other devices. Plus, the update adds Spatial Audio compatibility for supported headphones. Already a feature on Apple devices, Spatial Audio changes the soundscape along with your head movements, providing an experience like you’re in the room with the sound’s source.
This just scratches the surface of what Android 13 brings to supported devices. More details on what’s available now and in the future are available via the official OS website. Other than recent Pixel phones, Android 13 will also come to other devices later this year. Brands that will get the update include, but are not limited to:
HMD (Nokia phones)
Android 13 catches the ecosystem up with several popular Apple features, but it still has some unique factors. Features like greater aesthetic control, clipboard clearing, and increased cross-device functionality will endear the OS to the Android faithful.