Android 13 has just been released rolling out to Google Pixel devices initially, and later to other devices from Samsung Galaxy, Asus, HMD (Nokia phones), iQOO, Motorola, OnePlus, Oppo, Realme, Sharp, Sony, Tecno, vivo, Xiaomi and more. Google also pushed Android 13 source code to AOSP (The Android Open Source Project).
Most of the changes to the new version of the Android operating system were introduced with the first Android 13 developer preview – released in February 2022 – adding privacy, security, and productivity improvements, and even some hidden gems such as virtualization enabling Pixel 6 to run Linux and Windows 11, although the feature was mostly implemented for security reasons and running third-party code such as DRM or crypto outside of the Android OS.
Other notable features added since then include Spatial Audio on headphones that enable head tracking, Bluetooth LE audio support, HDR video support on third-party camera apps, braille displays for Talkback, and more. You’ll find more information about user-facing changes in Google’s announcement and the Android website. App developers may also want to check out the release notes with more details about API changes.
Android 13 should show up as an OTA update on supported Pixel devices (Pixel 4 to Pixel 6 models), but it’s also possible to download the factory or OTA images. Note that if you upgrade to Android 13 on Pixel 6/6a/6 Pro devices it will change the bootloader, and there’s no going back to earlier versions of Android. That warning is only shown for the factory images, and not the Full OTA images.
If you’d like to get Android 13 source code (for Pixel 6a) run the following commands:
~/bin/repo init -u https://android.googlesource.com/platform/manifest -b android-13.0.0_r3
There are a different tags for Pixel 6, Pixel 6 Pro (android-13.0.0_r2) and Pixel 4, Pixel 4a, Pixel 4a (5G), Pixel 4 XL, Pixel 5, Pixel 5a (5G) (android-13.0.0_r1). Android 13 and the AOSP source have been released a bit earlier than usual with the Android 12 source code released in October 2021, and Android 11 outed in September 2020.
Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011.