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Daily Authority: 👉 Android 13 warms up

Plus a just-announced Sony phone launch, and more.
By
April 27, 2022
Android 13 stock photos 10 1200x675 1

☕ Good morning! Just as I’m finishing this newsletter, a Sony event was announced for a likely new Xperia phone. I wonder how long it’ll take from announcement to shipping, though…

Android 13

Android 13 Revamped Clipboard
C. Scott Brown / Android Authority

Ooh: Android 13’s beta is no longer just for developers.

What happened:

Google has exited the early developer preview portion of Android 13’s release, moving to a public beta version.

  • The short version is that it’s not exactly a huge day.
  • It’s tough for Android to deliver a ground-shaking round of updates that blow your socks off. Same goes for Apple with iOS.
  • Anyway: It may not be just for developers anymore, but it remains just for people with a Google Pixel.
  • As a comparison, the first beta release of Android 12 was May 18, so Google is a few weeks ahead of last year’s rollout.
  • That’s attributed to Android 13 not being as big of a step-change, and also getting in ahead of Google I/O next month to start getting the features fully baked.

What’s new:

  • For early adopters, it’s a first chance to get a look at what’s already been in the first of two developer previews.
  • Google notes that includes: “privacy features like the new notification permission and photo picker … capabilities like Bluetooth LE [Low Energy] audio and MIDI 2.0 over USB, …new permissions for more granular access to media files, improved audio routing APIs, and more.”
  • Also for developers: “themed app icons, quick settings tile placement, and per-app language support.”
  • In short, while it’s a public beta, it’s still more developer-focused.
  • A big change in Beta 1 is the change to how permissions are granted for media. Google is essentially trying to limit how much apps can access images, video, and audio, and not grant all permissions just for an app to only use audio.

Behind the scenes

  • Aside from what Google puts in its blog and what is obvious at first glance when using a Pixel running Android 13, there’s all kinds of small changes to the UI and UX. For example, many more color/theme options for Pixel themes, the progress bar when you’re playing media is now squiggly, and there’s also a change to the clipboard: anything you’ve copied will be cleared after one hour (h/t Mishaal Rahman)
  • Again, that’s all in the name of privacy.
  • And expect more significant pieces to roll out through the following betas, such as face unlock on the Pixel 6 Pro.
  • Google points out it’ll be sharing more at Google I/O, as well.
  • For now, if you’re up to it, you can get the public beta by enrolling your Pixel here.
  • (I did hit up the beta for Android 12, but I won’t for Android 13. The bugs I encountered, mainly to my continuous glucose monitor setup, mean I’ll just be waiting this one out.)

Also:Google Play Store’s app privacy labels, that show you how apps collect and share your data, have started appearing ahead of a mandatory requirement by July 20.

Roundup

👉 Sony announces Xperia event for May 11: Xperia 1 IV likely coming next month (Android Authority).

⌚ This person on Reddit with the Pixel Watch finally got the straps on it, put it on the wrist, and says it looks ‘gorgeous’ (Android Authority).

📈 Google announced its earnings (revenue up 23% year-on-year, but profits down 8% due to higher costs for traffic acquisition). It also pointed out that the Pixel 6 series is the fastest-selling Pixel line ever, and hinted at announcements of new devices at Google I/O. Pixel 6a, Pixel Watch? (Android Authority).

📈 Microsoft also reported solid earnings. Brief highlights: Windows and Xbox up 11% thank-you-very-much, Surface up 13%, and 10 million people have streamed games from Microsoft’s cloud (The Verge).

🆕 Poco F4 GT launched: The best gaming phone on the market? (Android Authority).

📉 Hackers successfully duped Google, Apple, Snap, Twitter, Meta, and others into giving up user data (Android Authority).

🍎 Huh: Apple’s Studio Display’s poor webcam quality was going to be fixed via the next firmware update. The update is in, and there’s only quite minor quality improvements. Does that mean: a) it’s not fixable b) the problem is the ultrawide lens? (9to5Mac).

📸 DJI suspends sales in Russia and Ukraine to prevent its drones from being used in combat. Based on what’s uploaded to Twitter and Telegram, that’s shutting the gate long after the horse has bolted… (Engadget).

🎮 Sony is reportedly telling developers to create time-limited demos for their games (Engadget).

🔊 Cover whatever you like in MIT’s new paper-thin speakers to turn just about anything into a speaker: your bedroom, your silent EV to alert pedestrians, anything (Gizmodo).

🐶 A startup just showed that its blood test for dogs accurately sounds the alarm for aggressive and advanced cancers. The catch? These often have no cure. So, do you want to know? (Wired).

💡 Say goodbye to incandescent light bulbs: The phase-out begins today (Gizmodo).

😁 How to officially submit your emoji idea (Wired).

👴 “With the passing of Stan Lee, and Betty White, who is America’s token “Old Person” now?” (r/askreddit).

Weirdness Wednesday

The other day a nice new vertical mouse dropped from Logitech, as wrist position in our always-tethered lives becomes worth considering as your joints creak and get sore.

But what about a weird horizontal mouse?

  • A what, you ask? Indeed.

It’s this:

Look at how much more …something, this is:

horiztontal mouse 2
Kickstarter/ConceptPix
  • Sorry, I tried opening my mind but I can’t help but laugh.
  • The Kickstarter copy says this new mouse “prevents the fingers from being too warped.” It’s all very strange!
  • Despite my chuckles, it could be something! Most likely, a strange new pain in your hand. But still! Maybe!
  • At least you only have to drop $29 to try (plus shipping).

Cheers,

Tristan Rayner, Senior Editor