For years, Android has had strong multi-profile support, which is especially useful on shared devices. However, the feature hasn’t changed much in recent years, and Google appears to forget about it now and then – multi-profile support for Google TV, which is built on Android, didn’t arrive until October of last year. Thankfully, it appears that Android 13 will receive a few enhancements.
Last week, the second Developer Preview of Android 13 was released, and while no profile-related features are enabled by default, a few experimental tweaks are being evaluated.
When the ‘flag user switcher chip’ flag in System UI is enabled, a new profile picker button appears in the status bar, which when pressed displays a list of possible profiles.
A new full-screen user profile switcher is also in the works, and it’s presumably aimed at devices with huge screens. The configuration value ‘config enable Fullscreen User Switcher’ can be used to manually enable it.
When not utilizing a profile photo, there’s now an improved settings menu for generating user profiles, with numerous color options to select from.
It’s unclear whether the new profile features will be activated for all users in the final Android 13 code, or if Google will hold off until a later release.
Some (or all) of the new features may only be available on tablets, where profiles are most likely to be utilized, but we’ll have to wait and see. On the lock screen, there’s also a profile switcher, which has been in beta since the first Android 13 Developer Preview.
Runtime permissions for app alerts, enhanced Japanese text wrapping, a new Text Conversion API for languages like Japanese, COLOR typefaces, MIDI 2.0, Bluetooth LE Audio, and other enhancements are included in Android 13 Developer Preview 2.
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