Android TV 13 will bring better picture-in-picture support, add new accessibility options

After quietly launching the first beta update earlier this month, Google is taking to I/O to announce a few more details on the Android TV 13 update.

As a part of its I/O developer sessions starting today, Google is providing more specific details on exactly what’s new in Android TV 13, with three key areas of focus — performance, accessibility, and multitasking.

Starting with performance, Google says that new APIs will help apps to work better with actual TV hardware. The “AudioManager” API will allow apps to better anticipate where audio is heading and what playback modes are available. The MediaSession API better allows Android TV and its apps to react to HDMI state changes to pause content or save power.

On the accessibility front, Android TV 13 adds new keyboard layouts for the InputDevice API. This allows for physical keyboards to better work with Android TV apps, which should prove especially helpful for game developers. Google says there’s also a new system-wide selection that enables audio descriptions across all apps.

Finally, and perhaps most exciting, is that Android TV 13 is expanding support for picture-in-picture. While the OS has supported PiP for years now, an updated API in Android 13 will allow better support. Video calling apps, for instance, will be able to change the size of a PiP window to fit more participants. A “Keep-Clear” API also ensures that the PiP window never covers the most important content on screen.

As usual, the Android TV 13 previews will be exclusive to the ADT-3 developer device. It’s unclear when, if ever, the update might be available to the Chromecast with Google TV. The update will likely be released in a stable form later this year.

More on Android TV OS:

Author: Ben Schoon
Source: 9TO5Google

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