Android 15 Developer Preview: Exploring the Newest Features

Android 15 Developer Preview Exploring the Newest Features

The initial Android 15 Developer Preview is here, offering developers an early glimpse into the exciting updates. This preview delivers a range of new features and enhancements, prioritizing privacy, security, camera advancements, and performance optimizations.

While Google abandoned public dessert codenames for Android after Android 10, it continues the tradition internally. Android 15 is internally known as ‘Vanilla Ice Cream

Android 15 is currently in the Developer Preview phase, with the stable release expected later this year. The current schedule includes previews through mid-March, followed by beta releases until May.

In June-July, Android 15 will reach platform stability, allowing developers to confidently test their apps against the finalized features. Subsequent updates will focus on bug fixes ahead of the official launch.

Performance Refinements

Android 15 enhances the Android Dynamic Performance Framework (ADPF), empowering developers to build power-efficient, high-performance apps. Let’s break down the key improvements:

  • Power Efficiency Mode: Apps can signal long-running background tasks, instructing the system to prioritize power efficiency over raw speed. This keeps devices cooler and preserves battery life.
  • GPU and CPU work duration metrics: ADPF can now reveal how long the CPU and GPU have been working on a task. This gives the system the insight to fine-tune both processors, dynamically optimizing performance for the situation.
  • Thermal headroom threshold: ADPF helps prevent overheating by understanding ‘thermal headroom’, or how much a device can handle before throttling performance. Apps can respond proactively to these predictions, making adjustments to maintain a smooth user experience.

These improvements and features can enable the developers to optimise applications and games to consume less power and be as efficient as possible.

UI/UX Improvements and New Features

Android 15 may retain the familiar Android look, but beneath the surface, Google has packed in significant improvements and feature updates. These changes have either been officially announced or discovered within the released Android 15 build.

Partial Screen Sharing

Partial screen sharing allows you to share or record just a specific app window instead of your entire screen. Apps can now react more intelligently to overheating situations with dynamic performance controls, leading to improved performance and battery life.

Health Connect

Android 15 takes health and fitness tracking to the next level by expanding on Android 14’s Health Connect foundation. This secure platform, designed to centralize your health data, now supports even more data types – which lets you to track your fitness, nutrition, and other health metrics seamlessly across your favorite apps.

In-app Camera Controls


Android 15 gives developers greater control over your device’s camera. This means:

  • Better low-light photos: Apps can now fine-tune how your camera handles dark environments, leading to brighter and clearer shots.
  • Precise flash control: Get the perfect amount of light in your photos with advanced flash adjustments.

Virtual MIDI 2.0 Devices

Android 15 improves how music creation apps work together. Now, your favorite composition apps can seamlessly control and interact with synthesizer apps for an experience that rivals using professional music equipment.

Notification cooldown

Tired of being bombarded by repetitive notifications from the same app? A new feature in Notifications section – “Notification Cooldown” automatically lowers the volume of those annoying repeat alerts, giving you some peace.

Universal Vibration Control for keyboard

Want to quickly silence those distracting keyboard vibrations across all your apps? Now you can! Android 15 introduces a universal toggle to turn keyboard vibrations on or off with a single tap. For more tailored control, you can still adjust this within individual keyboard apps.

Android 15 Gives You More Control Over Your Foldable’s Displays

Users have the ability to manage the usage of apps on the front display of foldable devices. Mishaal Rahman highlights that this functionality was initially seen in Android 14 QPR betas but was subsequently removed, only to make a return nowAndroid 15 solves this with new settings:

  • Always switch apps: Ideal for seamless transitions when folding your device.
  • Switch for media only: Keeps apps like games and videos active on the front display, but not other apps.
  • Never switch apps: Locks the front display when the device is folded.

Google is also testing a convenient “Swipe up to continue” option. This lets you easily transfer apps to the front display with a simple swipe on the lock screen after folding.

Use Privacy and Security Updates

Android 15 takes privacy and security seriously. The app permission auto-reset feature protects your privacy by automatically revoking permissions from apps you haven’t used in a while. A new privacy dashboard grants a comprehensive view of your privacy settings and app data usage.

File-based encryption safeguards your data even in the unfortunate event of device loss or theft, and new APIs bolster protection against malware and other security risks.

Android 15 Release Timeline

The Android 15 Developer Preview is available for over-the-air (OTA) download on Pixel 6, 7, and 8, Pixel Fold, and Pixel Tablet. If you have a compatible Pixel device, you can enroll in the preview program on the Android developer website. After enrollment, you’ll receive an OTA notification when the preview is ready for installation. However, as this is still a preview version, make sure to back up your phone before installing, as it may contain bugs.

Subsequent Developer Previews and Beta releases will occur through to June/July, when Android 15 is expected to reach Platform Stability. Google’s roadmap includes six releases: two Developer Previews in February and March, followed by four Betas between April and July. The final, stable version of Android 15 is expected sometime between August and October.

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