Tag Archives: Android TV OS

Android 13 for TV is now available

Posted by Wolfram Klein, Product Manager, Android TV OSToday we’re releasing the newest version of Android TV OS, Android 13 for TV! This latest release brings further improvements in performance and accessibility to help our developers build engaging apps for the next generation of TVs.

Here’s a look at some of what’s new in Android 13 for TV.

Performance and Quality

Android 13 brings new APIs to the big screen that help developers deliver high quality experiences to users across different device types.

  • Improvements to the AudioManager API allow developers to anticipate audio attribute support for the active audio device and select the optimal format without starting playback.
  • Users can now change the default resolution and refresh rate on supported HDMI source devices for a more reliable playback experience.
  • HDMI state changes are now surfaced to the MediaSession lifecycle, allowing TV dongles and other HDMI source devices to save power and pause content in reaction to HDMI state changes.

Accessibility and Input Controls

Android 13 brings new features to make interacting with TV more adaptable.

  • The InputDevice API now supports different keyboard layouts. Game developers can also reference keys by their physical location to support different layouts of physical keyboards.
  • A newly created audio descriptions API in AccessibilityManager allows your app to query the new system-wide audio description preference setting, helping developers provide audio descriptions in line with a user’s preference automatically.

Check out the Android TV OS developer site for details on even more features that come with Android 13 on TVs. The new release is now available for both ADT-3 and the Android TV emulator, and developers can choose to test on either the Google TV interface or the standard Android TV interface. As always, we are thankful to our developers for the continued support of Android TV OS. We can’t wait to see what amazing and innovative experiences you’ll continue to build for the big screen.

What’s new with Google TV & Android TV OS

Shobana Radhakrishnan, Senior Director of Engineering - Google TV

Paul Lammertsma, Developer Relations Engineer

Image of Android and Google TV Iconography

Today, there is more entertainment content available than ever before. In fact, our research shows a third of U.S. households now watch more than 25 hours of TV every week. As the role of TV continues to evolve, it’s our goal to build a tailored TV experience that gives users easy access to the entertainment they love.

We’re excited about the future of Android TV OS, now with over 110 million monthly active devices, including millions of Google TVs. Android TV and Google TV are available on over 300 partners worldwide, including 7 of the 10 largest smart TV OEMs and over 170 pay TV operators. And thanks to the hard work of our developer community, there are more than 10,000 apps available on TV, with more being added everyday.

Since last year’s I/O, we’ve continued our commitment to enable you to build better and more engaging experiences on Android TV OS. In addition to platform updates, new features, like expanded integrations with the Live tab, offer opportunities for users to better engage with your content. And if you haven’t begun using WatchNext API, take a moment to learn how to add it to your app to make your content more discoverable and accessible.

Today, we are introducing new features and tools on Android 13 that focus on overall performance & quality, improve accessibility, and enable multitasking.

  • Performance & quality: To help build for the next generation of TVs, we’re introducing new APIs to help you better detect a user’s settings and give them the best experience for their device. AudioManager allows your app to anticipate audio routes and precisely understand which playback mode is available. Integrating your app correctly with MessiaSession allows Android TV to react to HDMI state changes in order to save power and signal that content should be paused.
  • Accessibility: To improve how users interact with their TV, we’ve added support for different keyboard layouts in the InputDevice API. Game developers can also reference keys by their physical location to support different layouts of physical keyboards, such as QWERTZ and AZERTY keyboards. A new system-wide accessibility preference also allows users to enable audio descriptions across apps.
  • Multitasking: TVs are now used for more than just watching media content. In fact, we often see users taking calls or monitoring cameras in a smart home. To help with multitasking, an updated picture in picture API will be supported in Android 13 with the APIs from core Android. Picture in picture on the TV supports an expanded mode to show more videos from a group call, a docked mode to avoid overlaying content on other apps, and a keep-clear API to prevent overlays from concealing important content in full-screen apps.
Image of Google TV interface with picture of Dune showing

Android 13 Beta for TV is available now, allowing you to test your apps and provide feedback on the latest release. Thank you for your continued support of Android TV OS. We can’t wait to see what amazing and innovative things you continue to build for the big screen.