Android 13 Beta 1 features: Here’s what’s new for Pixel owners

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Google is rolling out Android 13 Beta 1, giving Pixel phone owners the chance to test new features in preparation for the full launch later this year.

The beta is coming as an over-the-air update for anyone with a Pixel 4, 5, 6 and Pixel 6 Pro, with users now able to choose to receive betas by the end of summer .

Beta 13 is coming a little earlier than Android 12 last year and before the Google I/O show next month, so Google is stepping things up a bit this year.

Android 13 Beta 1 is very similar to Android 13 Developer Preview 2, released earlier this spring, but this represents the first opportunity for the general public to get involved.

That means the new Notifications Permissions interface, which will force developers to ask you before bombarding you with alerts. It also includes the new Bluetooth LE Audio Photo Picker and MIDI 2.0 support over USB. There is also language support per application.

In terms of new features, there are only three documented by Google and two of them are for developers, but more might emerge as people dig deeper into the beta. The only publicly available new feature is granular permissions settings for media on your device. There won’t be separate settings for apps seeking to access videos, images, and audio.

“We invite you to try out Beta 1 as we welcome more early adopters to give us feedback on this release,” said Dave Burke, vice president of Android Engineering, in a blog post. “You can try Android 13 Beta 1 today on supported Pixel devices by signing up here to get the update over-the-air.”

“We continue to focus on privacy and security, while bringing you new APIs to help you create great experiences for your users. Beta 1 includes the latest feature updates we previously announced, such as new notification permission, photo picker, themed app icons, improved localization and language support, and more.

You can hear here to enroll your compatible device in the Android Beta program and download Beta 1 today. You don’t need to have downloaded the Developer Previews to join the beta today.

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