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Android TV 13: What the new operating system can do

Martin Jud
05.12.2022

Google has released Android TV 13. The operating system does not bring any visual innovations, but it does improve accessibility and the handling of HDMI sources and audio tracks.

Android TV 13 or Google TV 13 looks the same as the previous version. However, there are some adjustments under the bonnet that are intended to improve quality and performance. These are the biggest innovations:

  • Predictive audio routes allow an application to identify the connected device and its supported formats before the audio track is generated.
  • For HDMI sources, it is now possible to manually set the resolution and refresh rate. In addition, status changes and language selection are better handled for HDMI source devices.
  • The standby mode has been improved and is now more energy efficient.
  • Accessibility has been improved for various items. The mute function is now visible in the privacy settings, the user control for the microphone has been improved and there is now a global setting for activating audio descriptions. Different layouts can now be selected for external keyboards.

All improvements compared to the previous version can be found here. Now it's up to the manufacturers - they can start porting to their streaming devices and TVs now. Until the time comes and Android 13 reaches the end devices, the new version is only available for the ADT-3 developer device and as an Android TV emulator. The first TVs with Android 13 will probably be unveiled at CES in January 2023.

Whether and how quickly manufacturers will implement the new version for existing devices is questionable. Hardly any box or TV is running Android TV 12, even though the update saw the light of day a year ago. Nvidia even gave its Shield TV an update to Android TV 11 in January 2022. So with the latest version, the fragmentation is likely to continue.

Titelbild: Shutterstock

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