Tag Archives: Android TV

Everything you need to know about Google TV and Android TV OS

Posted by Shobana Radhakrishnan – Senior Director of Engineering, Google TV, and Paul Lammertsma – Developer Relations Engineer

Over the past year, we’ve seen significant growth of Android TV OS, reaching 220 million monthly active devices with a 47% year-over-year increase. This incredible engagement would not be possible without our dedicated developer community. A massive thank you for your contributions.

Android 14 on TV

We’re bringing Android 14 to TV! The next generation of Android provides improvements in performance, sustainability, accessibility, and multitasking to help you build engaging apps for TVs.

  • Performance and sustainability — Android 14 for TV improves on previous OS versions so users get a snappier, more responsive TV experience. We’ve also added new energy modes to put users in control, helping to reduce a TV’s standby power consumption (see Energy saving image). Ensure your app integrates with MediaSession correctly to prevent content from continuing when input modes change or the panel switches off.
  • Accessibility — New features include color correction, enhanced text options, and improved navigation for users, which can all be toggled on or off using remote shortcuts. Review the accessibility best practices to make sure your app supports these features.
  • Multitasking Picture-in-picture mode is now supported on qualified Android 14 TV models. To evaluate whether a device supports the feature, query PackageManager for the picture-in-picture feature flag:

    For additional details, consult the updated Android TV app quality guidelines and the Android 14 for TV release notes.

    Compose for TV

    Compose for TV is now available in 1.0.0-beta01. We’ve updated the developer tools in Android Studio to include a new project wizard to give you a running start with Compose for TV.

    Here are just a few ways Compose makes it easier to build apps for TV:

      • Dedicated components for TV apps. Explore these components in our design guide or in practice by using our new TV Material Catalog app. Since the previous alpha release, we’ve added lists, navigation, chips, and settings screens.
      • Improved input support and performance. We’ve worked hard to address focus issues and ensure that the UI appears and animates smoothly.
      • Ease of implementation and extensive styling. Add components to your app and customize them with minimal code.
      • Broad form-factor support. Reuse business logic from your phone, tablet, or foldable app to render a TV UI with changes that can be as small as simply adding a ViewModel.

    Beta01 makes two big changes from alpha10:

      • Several components have graduated from experimental.
      • The ImmersiveList composable has been removed from the androidx-tv-material package.

    Carousel and chip components, such as FilterChip, are still experimental, so you’ll want to keep the @ExperimentalTvMaterial3Api annotation if you are using these components in your app. For all other components, you can now remove the @ExperimentalTvMaterial3Api annotation, since these APIs are now available in beta.

    We heard your feedback about the variety in the data types that represent content, which made it difficult to design a component in such a way that it would result in less code. If you are using the ImmersiveList composable from the alpha release, replace it with a custom implementation of an immersive list. While ImmersiveList is no longer part of Compose for TV, you can create an immersive list with just a few lines of code:

    fun SampleImmersiveList() {
        val selectedMovie = remember { mutableStateOf<Movie?>(null) }
        // Container
            modifier = Modifier
        ) {
            // Background
                modifier = Modifier
                    .aspectRatio(20f / 7)
            ) {}
            // Rows
                modifier = Modifier.align(Alignment.BottomEnd),
            ) {
                items(movies) { movie ->
                        modifier = Modifier
                            .onFocusChanged {
                                if (it.hasFocus) {
                                    selectedMovie.value = movie
                    ) {}

    A complete snippet is available in the immersive list sample.

    Also consult the comprehensive list of changes in the release notes to migrate any renamed or moved components.

    Migrate from the Leanback UI toolkit

    We recommend following our step-by-step migration guide to switch from Leanback to Compose for Android TV.


    Whether you’re new to Compose or are in the process of migrating to Compose already, our large collection of resources are here to help you learn best practices for building TV UIs with the modern Android development toolkit, Jetpack Compose:

    Engage with the active Android developer community on Stack Overflow for any bugs you encounter, or submit the bugs through our public bug tracker.

    Thank you for your continued support of Android TV OS. We can’t wait to see what you’ll do on Google TV with the Android 14 TV OS!

15 Things to know for Android developers at Google I/O

Posted by Matthew McCullough, Vice President, Product Management, Android Developer  

AI is unlocking experiences that were not even possible a few years ago, and we’ve been hard at work reimaging Android with AI at the core, to help enable you to build a whole new class of apps. At this year’s Google I/O, we’re covering how new tools like Gemini can power building the next generations of apps on Android. Plus, we showcased a range of updates to our tools and services grounded in productivity, helping you make it faster and easier to build excellent experiences across form factors. Let’s dive in!

Powering the next generation of Apps with AI

#1: AI in your tools, with Gemini in Android Studio

Gemini in Android Studio (formerly Studio Bot) is your coding companion for Android development, and thanks to your feedback since its preview at last year’s Google I/O, we’ve evolved our models, expanded to over 200 countries and territories, and brought it into the Gemini family of products. Earlier today, we previewed a number of new features coming soon, like Code suggestions, App Quality Insights that leverage Gemini, and a preview of the multi-modal inputs that are coming using Gemini 1.5 Pro. You can read more about the updates here, and make sure to check out What’s new in Android development tools.

#2: Building with Generative AI

Android provides the solution you need to build Generative AI apps. You can use our most capable models over the Cloud with the Gemini API in Google AI or Vertex AI for Firebase directly in your Android apps. For on-device, Gemini Nano is our most efficient model. We’re working closely with a few early adopters such as Patreon, Grammarly, and Adobe to ensure we’re creating the best APIs that unlock the most innovative experiences. For example, Adobe is experimenting with Gemini Nano to enhance the on-device experience of Acrobat AI Assistant, a tool that allows their users to summarize and interact with documents. Be sure to check out the Build your own generative AI powered Android app, Android on-device gen AI under the hood, and the What’s New in Android sessions to learn more!

Moving image of Gemini Nano operating in Adobe

Excellent apps, across devices

#3: Think adaptive: apps on phones, foldables, tablets and more

Build and design apps that adapt beyond the phone, with the new Compose adaptive layout libraries built with Material guidance in beta. Add rich stylus and keyboard support to increase user productivity. Check out three of our key Android adaptive sessions at Google I/O: Designing adaptive apps, Building adaptive Android apps, and Increase user productivity with large screens and accessories.

Moving image of Gemini Nano operating in Adobe

#4: Enhance homescreens with Widgets and Jetpack Glance

Jetpack Glance 1.1 is now available in release candidate and lets you build high quality widgets using your Compose skills. Check out our new canonical layouts, design guidance and figma updates to the Android UI kit. To learn more check out our Improve the user experience of your Android app workshop and Build Android widgets with Jetpack Glance technical session.

#5-9: come back here tomorrow and Thursday!

We’ll continue to share more updates for Android Developers throughout Google I/O, so check back here tomorrow!

Developer Productivity

#10: Use Kotlin Multiplatform for sharing business logic

Kotlin Multiplatform (KMP) enables sharing Kotlin code across different platforms and several of our Jetpack libraries, like DataStore and Room, have already been migrated to take advantage of KMP. We use Kotlin Multiplatform within Google and recommend using KMP for sharing business logic between platforms. Learn more about it here.

#11: Compose: Shared Elements, performance improvements and more

The upcoming Compose June ‘24 release is packed with the features you’ve been asking for! Shared element transitions, lazy list item reordering animations, strong skipping mode, performance improvements, a new lazy flow layout and more. Read more about it in our blog.

#12: Android Studio: the latest preview, with Gemini and more

Android Studio Koala 🐨Feature Drop (2024.1.2) available today in the canary channel, builds on top of IntelliJ 2024.1 and adds new innovative features unlocked by Gemini, such as insights for crashes in App Quality Insights, code transformations and a Gemini API starter template to get you quickly started with Gemini. Additionally, new features such as USB speed detection, shortcut UI to control device settings, a new way to sign into Google services, updated and speedier UI for profilers with a new task centric approach and a deep integration with the Google Play SDK index are intended to make the development process extremely productive. Read more here.

And the latest from the world of Mobile

#13: Grow your business with the latest Google Play updates

Discover new ways to attract and engage users with enhanced custom store listings. Optimize revenue with expanded payment options. Reinforce trust through secure, high-quality experiences made easier with our latest SDK Console improvements. Learn about these updates and more, including our new vertical approach, in our blog.

#14: Simplify app compliance with Checks

Streamline your app's privacy compliance with Checks, Google's AI-powered compliance solution! Checks empowers developers to swiftly identify, address, resolve privacy issues, and enables you to launch apps faster and with confidence. Harness the power of automation with Checks' intelligent reports, saving you valuable time and resources. Get started now at checks.google.com.

#15: And of course, Android 15

…but for that, you’ll have to stay tuned tomorrow, when we’ve got a bit more up our sleeve!

Building pixel-perfect living room experiences with Compose for TV

Posted by Paul Lammertsma, Developer Relations Engineer

Over the past year, we’ve continued to see significant growth on Android TV OS, now with over 150 million monthly active devices. In fact, according to Strategy Analytics, the Android TV streaming platform shipped on more devices worldwide than any other streaming TV platform in 2022.

Today, we’re launching the Alpha release of Compose for TV, the latest UI framework for developing beautiful and functional apps for Android TV.

Building pixel-perfect living room experiences with Compose for TV

Compose for TV unlocks all the benefits of Jetpack Compose for your TV apps, allowing you to build apps with less code, easier maintenance and a modern Material 3 look straight out of the box:

  • Less code: Do more with less code and avoid entire classes of bugs, so code is simple and easy to maintain. 
  • Intuitive: Describe your UI, and Compose takes care of the rest. As the app state changes, your UI automatically updates. 
  • Accelerate development: Compose for TV is compatible with all your existing code so you can adopt when and where you want. Iterate fast with live previews and full Android Studio support. 
  • Powerful & flexible: Create beautiful apps with direct access to the Android platform APIs that can be easily reused between other form factors, including your existing mobile, tablet, foldable, wearable and TV interfaces.

TV design guidelines

We're also excited to announce the launch of our new TV Design Guidelines for Android TV. This comprehensive guide gives you the tools you need to create TV apps that are visually appealing, intuitive, and immersive. The guidelines cover everything from typography and color to navigation and layout. Follow these guidelines to create high-quality TV apps that are easy to use.

image of a wall mounted, flat screen television in a modern home. The screen is showing the preview for a show titled 'Paws' with an adorable puppy as the show's star, and a Watch Now button

Components you can use today

Here are some components from the TV library that are optimized for the living room experience. You can use them alongside the Material components in Compose you’re already familiar with.

Scroll containers

TvLazyColumn {   items(contentList) { content ->     TvLazyRow { items(content) { cardItem -> Card(cardItem) }   } }

moving image of a grid of content cards
A grid of content cards

TvLazyRow( pivotOffsets = PivotOffsets(0.0f) ) { items(movie) { movie -> MyContentCard(movie) } }

moving image of a grid of content cards
Adjusting the pivot of a TvLazyRow

Immersive List

ImmersiveList( modifier = Modifier.height(130.dp).fillMaxWidth(), background = { index, _ -> AnimatedContent(targetState = index) { MyImmersiveListBackground(it) } }, ) { TvLazyRow { items(featuredContentList.size) { index -> MyCard( Modifier.focusableItem(index), featuredContentList[index] ) } } }

moving image of a grid of content cards
ImmersiveList allows TvLazyRows to be combined with content featuring

Featured carousel

Carousel( itemCount = featuredContentList.size, ) { index -> CarouselItem( background = { MyBackground(index) }, content = { MyFeaturedContent(featuredContentList[index]) } ) }

moving image of a grid of content cards
Carousel features content with custom content and backgrounds


var selectedTabIndex by remember { mutableStateOf(0) } TabRow(selectedTabIndex = selectedTabIndex) { tabs.forEachIndexed { index, tab -> Tab( selected = selectedTabIndex == index, onFocus = { selectedTabIndex = index }, ) { Text(tab) } } } MyContentBody(selectedTabIndex)

moving image of a grid of content cards
TabRows can be placed at the top of the screen to provide top navigation

Side navigation with navigation drawer

NavigationDrawer( drawerContent = { if (DrawerValue.Open == it) { MyExpandedSideMenu() } else { MyCompactSideMenu() } } ){ MyContentBody() }

moving image of a grid of content cards
NavigationDrawer makes it easy to implement side navigation that expands and collapses

TV-optimized components

Subtle focus hints that work on phones and tablets might not be optimal for TVs, due to environmental factors such as distance from the screen and contrast ratio. To address this, we’ve built dedicated Material3 inspired components that provide big, bold focus for selected elements like Buttons and Cards, designed with accessibility in mind. You can use these Indications for your own custom surfaces as well.

moving image of a grid of content cards
Component focus can be customized through different indication types: Scale, Border, Glow and Color

Built with developers

We worked closely with a group of early adopters to get their feedback on Compose for TV. Here’s what they have to say:

Quote card with headshot of Dai Williams, Plex, smiling and text reads,'TV focus and scrolling support on Compose from Google has greatly improved our developer productivity and app performance. We are excited to launch more and more features using Compose this year.'

Quote card with headshot of Danny Preussler, Android Platform Lead, Soundcloud, smiling and text reads,'Thanks to Compose for TV, we are able to reuse components and move much faster than the old Leanback View APIs would have ever allowed us to'

Quote card with headshot of Petr Introvič, Showmax, smiling and text reads,'Dev-friendly components like ImmersiveList or Carousel helped us put front the top content, and NavigationDrawer added a top-level navigation—the final piece for our TV app migration to Compose.'

Quote card with headshot of Kishore AK, CTO, Zee5, smiling, and text reads 'We are constantly striving to ensure our users have the best possible experience. We started early on COmpose for TV and are confident that its implementation will help in making our app rendering faster and smoother.'

Learning more

To get started , check out the developer guides, design reference, our new codelab and sample code. Be sure to check the latest release notes to keep up to date with the latest updates to Compose for TV.

Feedback from developers & designers like you

We’ve heard your feedback about the Leanback API and your desire to use a modern UI framework that looks great out of the box, but also lends itself to be thoroughly themed and customized. Please continue to give us feedback so we can continue shaping Compose for TV to fit your needs.

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.

13 Things to know for Android developers at Google I/O!

Posted by Maru Ahues Bouza, Director of Android Developer Relations

Android I/O updates: Jetpack, Wear OS, etc 

There aren’t many platforms where you can build something and instantly reach billions of people around the world, not only on their phones—but their TVs, cars, tablets, watches, and more. Today, at Google I/O, we covered a number of ways Android helps you make the most of this opportunity, and how Modern Android Development brings as much commonality as possible, to make it faster and easier for you to create experiences that tailor to all the different screens we use in our daily lives.

We’ve rounded up the top 13 things to know for Android developers—from Jetpack Compose to tablets to Wear OS and of course… Android 13! And stick around for Day 2 of Google I/O, when Android’s full track of 26 technical talks and 4 workshops drop. We’re also bringing back the Android fireside Q&A in another episode of #TheAndroidShow; tweet us your questions now using #AskAndroid, and we’ve assembled a team of experts to answer live on-air, May 12 at 12:30PM PT.


#1: Jetpack Compose Beta 1.2, with support for more advanced use cases

Android’s modern UI toolkit, Jetpack Compose, continues to bring the APIs you need to support more advanced use cases like downloadable fonts, LazyGrids, window insets, nested scrolling interop and more tooling support with features like LiveEdit, Recomposition Debugging and Animation Preview. Check out the blog post for more details.

Jetpack Compose 1.2 Beta  

#2: Android Studio: introducing Live Edit

Get more done faster with Android Studio Dolphin Beta and Electric Eel Canary! Android Studio Dolphin includes new features and improvements for Jetpack Compose and Wear OS development and an updated Logcat experience. Android Studio Electric Eel comes with integrations with the new Google Play SDK Index and Firebase Crashlytics. It also offers a new resizable emulator to test your app on large screens and the new Live Edit feature to immediately deploy code changes made within composable functions. Watch the What’s new in Android Development Tools session and read the Android Studio I/O blog post here.

#3: Baseline Profiles - speed up your app load time!

The speed of your app right after installation can make a big difference on user retention. To improve that experience, we created Baseline Profiles. Baseline Profiles allow apps and libraries to provide the Android runtime with metadata about code path usage, which it uses to prioritize ahead-of-time compilation. We've seen up to 30% faster app startup times thanks to adding baseline profiles alone, no other code changes required! We’re already using baseline profiles within Jetpack: we’ve added baselines to popular libraries like Fragments and Compose – to help provide a better end-user experience. Watch the What’s new in app performance talk, and read the Jetpack blog post here.

Modern Android Development 


#4: Going big on Android tablets

Google is all in on tablets. Since last I/O we launched Android 12L, a release focused on large screen optimizations, and Android 13 includes all those improvements and more. We also announced the Pixel tablet, coming next year. With amazing new hardware, an updated operating system & Google apps, improved guidelines and libraries, and exciting changes to the Play store, there has never been a better time to review your apps and get them ready for large screens and Android 13. That’s why at this year’s I/O we have four talks and a workshop to take you from design to implementation for large screens.

#5: Wear OS: Compose + more!

With the latest updates to Wear OS, you can rethink what is possible when developing for wearables. Jetpack Compose for Wear OS is now in beta, so you can create beautiful Wear OS apps with fewer lines of code. Health Services is also now in beta, bringing a ton of innovation to the health and fitness developer community. And last, but certainly not least, we announced the launch of The Google Pixel Watch - coming this Fall - which brings together the best of Fitbit and Wear OS. You can learn more about all the most exciting updates for wearables by watching the Wear OS technical session and reading our Jetpack Compose for Wear OS announcement.

Compose for Wear OS 

#6: Introducing Health Connect

Health Connect is a new platform built in close collaboration between Google and Samsung, that simplifies connectivity between apps making it easier to reach more users with less work, so you can securely access and share user health and fitness data across apps and devices. Today, we’re opening up access to Health Connect through Jetpack Health—read our announcement or watch the I/O session to find out more!

#7: Android for Cars & Android TV OS

Android for Cars and Android TV OS continue to grow in the US and abroad. As more users drive connected or tune-in, we’re introducing new features to make it even easier to develop apps for cars and TV this year. Catch the “What’s new with Android for Cars” and “What's new with Google TV and Android TV” sessions on Day 2 (May 12th) at 9:00 AM PT to learn more.

#8: Add Voice Across Devices

We’re making it easier for users to access your apps via voice across devices with Google Assistant, by expanding developer access to Shortcuts API for Android for Cars, with support for Wear OS apps coming later this year. We’re also making it easier to build those experiences with Smarter Custom Intents, enabling Assistant to better detect broader instances of user queries through ML, without any NLU training heavy lift. Additionally, we’re introducing improvements that drive discovery to your apps via voice on Mobile, first through Brandless Queries, that drive app usage even when the user hasn’t explicitly said your app’s name, and App Install Suggestions that appear if your isn’t installed yet–these are automatically enabled for existing App Actions today.


#9: What’s new in Play!

Get the latest updates from Google Play, including new ways Play can help you grow your business. Highlights include the ability to deep-link and create up to 50 custom listings; our LiveOps beta, which will allow more developers to submit content to be considered for featuring on the Play Store; and even more flexibility in selling subscriptions. Learn about these updates and more in our blog post.

#10: Google Play SDK Index

Evaluate if an SDK is right for your app with the new Google Play SDK index. This new public portal lists over 100 of the most widely used commercial SDKs and information like which app permissions the SDK requests, statistics on the apps that use them, and which version of the SDK is most popular. Learn more on our blog post and watch “What’s new in Google Play” and “What’s new in Android development tools” sessions.

#11: Privacy Sandbox on Android

Privacy Sandbox on Android provides a path for new advertising solutions to improve user privacy without putting access to free content and services at risk. We recently released the first Privacy Sandbox on Android Developer Preview so you can get an early look at the SDK Runtime and Topics API. You can conduct preliminary testing of these new technologies, evaluate how you might adopt them for your solutions, and share feedback with us.

#12: The new Google Wallet API

The new Google Wallet gives users fast and secure access to everyday essentials across Android and Wear OS. We’re enhancing the Google Wallet API, previously called Google Pay Passes API, to support generic passes, grouping and mixing passes together, for example grouping an event ticket with a voucher, and launching a new Android SDK which allows you to save passes directly from your app without a backend integration. To learn more, read the full blog post, watch the session, or read the docs at developers.google.com/wallet.

#13: And of course, Android 13!

The second Beta of Android 13 is available today! Get your apps ready for the latest features for privacy and security, like the new notification permission, the privacy-protecting photo picker, and improved permissions for pairing with nearby devices and accessing media files. Enhance your app with features like app-specific language support and themed app icons. Build with modern standards like HDR video and Bluetooth LE Audio. You can get started by enrolling your Pixel device here, or try Android 13 Beta on select phones, tablets, and foldables from our partners - visit developer.android.com/13 to learn more.

That’s just a snapshot of some of the highlights for Android developers at this year’s Google I/O. Be sure to watch the What’s New in Android talk to get the landscape on the full Android technical track at Google I/O, which includes 26 talks and 4 workshops. Enjoy!

Android 12 Beta 3 for TV is now available

Posted by Wolfram Klein, Product Manager, Android TV OS

Alongside today’s Android 12 Beta 3 release for mobile, we’re also bringing the third Beta of Android 12 to Android TVs. We’re excited to bring new media features, UI improvements, and privacy controls to the experience with Beta 3 while we continue our work of preparing the full release.


At the heart of the TV experience is beautiful and seamless media playback. In the US, users are spending well over 4 hours a day watching media on TV, and are always asking for the highest resolution playback possible. With Android 12, we are releasing three new features to better support ever-improving picture quality.

  • Refresh Rate Switching Settings: For a smoother viewing experience, Android 12 now supports seamless and non-seamless refresh rate switching. Apps can now integrate these settings for playback of content at optimal frame rates. The Match Content Frame Rate user setting has been added to allow users to control this feature, and apps can call Display.getMode to know if a user’s device supports seamless rate switching.
  • Better display mode reporting: We are improving how TV devices report display modes and making hotplugging behavior more consistent. App developers no longer need to use workarounds for accurately detecting display modes or for handling HDMI hotplug events.
  • Tunnel Mode Updates: Updates to Android’s tunnel mode are making it even easier for app developers to support consistent and efficient playback across devices by reducing media processing overhead in the Android Framework.

User Interface

A beautiful media experience needs an equally stunning user interface to match. Android TV brings two new additions to the UI that help developers provide users with a richer visual experience on high performance devices.

  • Background blurs: Background blurring using RenderEffect (for in-app blurs) and WindowManager (for cross-window blurs) can now be used to easily enhance the visual separation of different UI layers.

Example background blur used to separate UI layers.

  • 4K UI support: For added visual fidelity, Android TV OS now officially supports UI rendering at 4k resolution on compatible devices. 4K UI resolution can be tested in the upcoming Android 12 emulator for TV to allow app developers to prepare their app for devices with the higher resolution.

Privacy and Security

With Android 12, we’re continuing to focus on giving users more transparency and control while keeping their devices and data secure. Beta 3 for TV includes many of the new privacy features from the Android framework.

  • Microphone and camera indicators: Users will now see any time apps are accessing the microphone or camera by showing an indicator on the TV screen. For better visibility of recent app accesses to microphone and camera, users can visit their privacy settings on TV.

Microphone and camera indicators showing during a video call. Video credit: Ekaterina Bolovtsova.

  • Microphone and camera toggles: Two new global privacy settings are now available, allowing the user to easily toggle access to the microphone or camera. When those toggles are disabled, apps will be unable to access microphone audio and camera video.

Microphone access toggle in a user’s global privacy settings.

  • Device Attestation: To assure that your application is running on certified and authentic hardware, the Android KeyStore API has been extended to support attestation of basic device properties.

The Android 12 Beta 3 release for TV is available as a system update to ADT-3 devices today. Also available in the coming weeks, you can use the preview version of the Android 12 emulator to test and build your apps for TV. We hope this helps you test your Android TV app implementations for the next generation of devices. To learn more about getting your Android TV app ready, visit our Android TV OS developers page.

We can’t wait to see what you will build with Android 12 on TV!

What’s new in Android TV (and Google TV!)

Posted by Ben Serridge, Director of Product Management - TV Platforms and Dan Aharon, Product Manager

Android TV

Today at Google I/O 2021, we announced a significant milestone for our team: we have over 80 million monthly active devices on Android TV OS, with more than 80% growth in the US alone. We would not be here without the hard work of the developer community, so a huge and heartfelt thank you to you all.

Android TV OS is the operating system that powers a number of devices around the world including the new Google TV experience launched last fall. Google TV has generated a lot of excitement from consumers, developers, and industry partners alike, offering a content forward TV experience that helps the user discover more of the movies and shows they love. Google TV is available on streaming devices like the Chromecast with Google TV, smart TVs from Sony (and soon TCL!), and as an app on Android devices. Check out this presentation on how to get your app ready for Google TV.

Our goal is to always enable you to build better and more engaging experiences on Android TV OS. One example of this is the widely utilized Watch Next API which increases app re-engagement by ~30% in certain cases1. Well over 100 major media partners are already using WatchNext API and you can learn more about how to add your app here.

We are also announcing several new tools and helpful features to make developing for Android TV OS easier and enable you to create engaging experiences for your users. Some are already available and some will be available soon:

  • Cast Connect with Stream Transfer and Stream Expansion: Cast Connect allows users to cast from their phone/ tablet or Chrome browser onto your app on Android TV. Stream Transfer and Stream Expansion allow users to transfer media to other devices and/or play audio on multiple devices.
  • Emulator updates: To help you make your app work better on Google TV without requiring new hardware, we are now making our first Google TV Emulator available, running on Android 11. There will also be an Android 11 image with the traditional Android TV experience. You can now also use a remote that more closely mimics TV remotes directly within the Emulator.
  • Firebase Test Lab: Firebase Test Lab runs millions of tests every week on behalf of developers. Following requests from developers, we are excited to share that Firebase Test Lab is adding Android TV support. Firebase Test Lab Virtual Devices run your app in the cloud on Android TV emulators and allow you to scale your test across hundreds or thousands of virtual devices. Physical Devices will be coming soon.
  • Android 12 Beta 1: We are making the Android 12 Beta 1 available for TV on ADT-3 today. With this release the developer community will be able to take advantage of many of the changes and improvements coming with Android 12. We encourage you to try it and provide us with feedback.

Thank you for your continued support of the Android TV OS platform. The future of TV is bright and we can’t wait to see what you build next!

1 Average gain in number of days active in the app in a 28-day period amongst app 28DAUs, based on 3 apps analyzed during the 11/2020 - 2/2021 period.

Introducing Android 11 on Android TV

Posted by Wolfram Klein, Product Manager, Android TV

Android TV graphic

We’ve been turning it up to 11 all summer long, leading up to the launch of Android 11 on mobile. Now, following right behind the mobile release, we are launching Android 11 on Android TV to bring the latest platform features to the big screen.

Android 11 on Android TV introduces performance and privacy improvements, new features tailored for the TV, and updated developer tools, in addition to enabling many of the features we announced during the #11WeeksOfAndroid.

Foundational Improvements

Android TV continues to bring many of the benefits that come with the core Android update to the TV. With Android 11, performance improvements, like enhanced memory management, and privacy features, like one-time permissions, are introduced to make sure TV devices work quickly and securely.

Tailored for the TV

Android 11 emphasizes media by bringing support for Auto Low Latency Mode, and low latency media decoding, along with a new Tuner Framework with updated Media CAS support and extensions to the HAL implementation of HDMI CEC.

With extended gamepad support, silent boot mode for system updates, inactivity prompts, and OEM configurable wake keys, Android 11 allows greater control over TV functions. New framework functionality for managing System LEDs and physical microphone mute buttons also facilitate integrations for far-field microphone enabled devices.

Faster Testing

Testing on the TV is now easier than ever. The addition of test harness mode on Android TV and Play Store support in the Android TV Emulator help you seamlessly inspect your apps as you develop.

Android TV OEM partners will be launching and upgrading devices to Android 11 over the coming months. To help you test your Android TV app implementations for the next generation of devices, Android 11 will be available as a system update to ADT-3 devices today. To learn more about getting your Android TV app ready for Android 11, visit our developers page.

We're looking forward to seeing your apps on Android 11!

Make your Google Meet and Duo calls better—and bigger

2020 may go down as the year of the video call. It’s become an indispensable tool, one we all use more than we likely would have imagined. But meeting fatigue is probably hitting you hard in the afternoon. Using the right devices can make a big difference in making video calls more enjoyable and engaging. Here are a few new ways to use Google Meet and Duo across a series of new devices to create a better meeting experience. 

Take your video calls to the big screen

With Google Meet on Cast, you can turn any room in your house into your own personal conference room, taking advantage of your TV or a Smart Display. Whether you want to step away from the notifications on your laptop or phone to be more present in a meeting or you’re on mute in a larger meeting and want to concentrate on your task at hand, casting to your TV can help you be more productive and stay focused. 

Meet and Cast can also pair up to simplify distance learning. Students can view their classmates and lesson plans on the big screen while working from their laptops, and teachers can get a broader view of their students on a call. 

To get started, you‘ll need to have a Google account, update to the latest version of Chrome and ensure that your Chromecast device has the latest firmware installed. Google Cast functionality is available for all Meet users, and casting works on Chromecast, TVs with built-in Chromecasts and Nest displays.

Duo Cast

The big screen isn’t just for work meetings, though: We also want to make video calling your friends and family better, too. In an effort to bring the video calling experience to more parts of your home, Google Duo is rolling out a Beta on Android TV in the coming weeks. With Google Duo, you can initiate one-on-one and group calls from your TV, and if your TV doesn't have a camera built-in, you can simply plug in a USB camera. 

Meet Hub Max Cast

Beyond TVs, Duo and Meet also work seamlessly with Nest Hub Max. You can simply say “Hey Google, join my next meeting” or “Hey Google, start a group call” and jump right into the video hands free, staying productive from a separate device on your desk.

Build the ultimate home office

Meet Home Office

With the Acer Chromebase and ASUS Remote Meet Kit from Google Meet hardware, you can elevate your work-from-home space into a dedicated home office. Google Meet hardware syncs automatically with Google Calendar so you can join meetings with a single touch, and is built on Chrome OS which brings over-the-air updates, peripheral support and advanced management capabilities. This frees up your laptop for more immersive meetings. 

Video calls aren’t going anywhere. But with new developments from Meet + Cast, Duo, Android TV, Nest Hub Max and Google Meet hardware, they can be a little more enjoyable.