The first developer preview of Android O has a number of improvements when it comes to audio. However, Google didn’t come up with all of these new features on its own. The company has confirmed it got some help from its hardware partners. In fact one of them, Sony Mobile, helped Google to improve the wireless audio support for Android O.
A Google spokesperson told The Verge that Sony Mobile has “contributed more than 30 feature enhancements and 250 bug fixes” for Android O. Those improvements include adding the LDAC codec to Android O’s Bluetooth support. As we reported earlier this week, this codec will allow Android O to transfer up to 990 kbps of data, which should allow for a much better audio experience on Bluetooth-based wireless headphones.
The catch to these updates is that other smartphone makers, as well as Bluetooth-based headphone companies, will still have to pay a licensing fee to Sony Mobile in order to let their devices use the more advanced LDAC codec in Android O. It remains to be seen if they will take that plunge. We have also discovered that Android O will support Qualcomm’s aptX and aptX-HD protocols for wireless audio, with the latter capable of offering 24-bit music quality for Bluetooth users.