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Android 13 Developer Preview 2 rollout begins, includes notification permissions

The latest update to Android 13 still isn't meant for the general public.
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Written by Jason Cipriani, Contributing Writer on
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Jason Cipriani/ZDNet

If you're running the Android 13 developer preview on your Pixel phone, it's time to update. Google on Thursday announced the release of the second developer preview. The first developer preview was released in early February, bringing minimal design changes to the mobile operating system that powers billions of devices around the world. 

Instead, the update focuses on privacy improvements, such as limiting which photos an app has access to. With the second developer preview, Google is adding even more privacy features to Android 13.

Apps are now required to request permission in order to send notifications. While not a direct privacy feature, it's certainly one that's long overdue on Android. Even apps that haven't been updated to Android 13's runtime will have a system dialog, making notification permissions a staple feature of Android 13, regardless of how old the app is.

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Image: Google

There's also a new developer downgradable permission API that will allow developers to self-revoke permissions the app required at one point but no longer needs. This is a nice API to have, but it will require developers to do the right thing.

There are several more important updates added to Android 13, including improved Japanese text wrapping, text conversion APIs, color vector fonts, and Bluetooth LE Audio improvements.

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Image: Google

Google is urging developers to test their apps now to ensure compatibility with Android 13 in time for the release of Android 13 Beta 1, currently scheduled for public release in April.

As a reminder, the Android 13 developer preview is compatible with the Pixel 4 and newer. You can learn more about installing it -- or why you shouldn't -- here.

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