Skip to main content

Android 13 is all about big screens, privacy, and payments

Google announced Android 13, its next big software update, today at I/O 2022. Unlike Android 12L’s low-key release earlier this year, this one comes with something for everyone — phone, watch, and tablet users alike. As with Android 12 before it, Google is continuing its focus on privacy and security, while adding more customization options to its Material You theming system.

To start with, Material You is once again taking the lead here, with Google highlighting enhanced customizability. You’ll see a lot more color options than before when theming your phone, and Google says that more apps will be able to take advantage of Material You’s themed icons feature.

Google will also ramp up Android 12’s privacy, including requiring apps to ask for permission before sending out notifications, automatically wiping clipboard history, and including a new Security and Privacy page that lets you see how safe your phone is at a glance.


Android 13 is also getting a lot better for larger-screen devices. Google started this work with Android 12L, and it’s continuing it with Android 13. There’s now built-in drag-and-drop support for select apps, a more flexible taskbar, and an intuitive split-screen by way of app pairs. Google is also taking care of its app problem, updating more than 20 of its Google apps to support larger screens. Apps from Facebook, TikTok, Canva, and more are expected to follow over the coming months,

Google also introduced the new Google Wallet, an upgrade to the Google Pay app that makes it a lot more like Apple Wallet, adding support for driver licenses, student IDs, and much more. It’s good to see Google pick it up and upgrade its currently lackluster Pay app. The company says this new app would be coming to Android devices around the world in the coming weeks.

With mobile operating systems being as mature as they are now, it’s not a very huge update. A lot of it simply builds on and evolves what Google already started working on with Android 12. It’s not exciting or sexy, but it’s necessary.

Android 13 will roll out this summer first to Google’s Pixels. Brands like OnePlus, Realme, and Oppo are already working on testing the developer preview. A new Android 13 Beta will roll out later today.

Editors' Recommendations

Michael Allison
A UK-based tech journalist for Digital Trends, helping keep track and make sense of the fast-paced world of tech with a…
Perplexity, one of our favorite AI apps, just got a big update
Perplexity app shown on an iPhone.

If you've been looking for more than just traditional search engines, you may have turned to Perplexity. The app allows users to ask questions and receive quick, accurate answers from a carefully selected set of sources, all powered by ChatGPT. Now, a new software update is making Perplexity AI even better.

Perplexity Pages allows you to transform your research into visually engaging and comprehensive content. Whether you are creating detailed articles, reports, or informative guides, Perplexity Pages brings your ideas to life. This new tool simplifies organizing and sharing information, giving you more control. You also have the option to publish your work to Perplexity’s library of user-generated content, where you can showcase your expertise.

Read more
The Google app on your Android phone is getting a helpful new feature
Google app on Android beta showing Notifications.

The Google app for Android phones is getting a helpful new feature to make search even better. The latest beta has a dedicated "Notifications" feed in its bottom bar. The feature was first introduced on the mobile version of Google for Android earlier this year. The app feature was first noticed by 9to5Google.

The app now includes a Notifications option at the bottom, next to Discover, Search, and Saved items. The Notifications section displays a continuous list of alerts from Google Search, weather conditions, flight information, sports scores, movies and TV shows, and more. The notifications are grouped under “Today” and “Earlier." This feature should prove handy if you miss a notification from the Google app, as it provides a more focused view than Android's system-level history.

Read more
This cool new Android tablet is hiding a very big secret
The Poco Pad tablet in different colors

If you know the Poco brand, it’s because of its brightly colored, reasonably priced, often gaming-focused smartphones. Now, the company has branched out into the world of Android tablets with the launch of the Poco Pad. The Poco Pad is a big-screen slate that, despite being only 7.5mm thick, hides a very big secret inside: a whopping 10,000mAh battery for those extended periods when you're away from the charger.

A battery capacity like this sets it apart from many other Android tablets. The Google Pixel Tablet’s 7,020mAh battery sounds positively small by comparison, and Poco pad's battery also improves on the Samsung Galaxy Tab S9’s 8,400mAh battery — and even the OnePlus Pad's 9.510mAh cell. To get a larger capacity battery in a tablet, you’ll need to look at the Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 FE Plus or the pricey Galaxy Tab S9 Ultra.

Read more