What you need to know
- Google starts rolling out Android 14 QPR2 Beta 3 to enrolled testers ranging from the Pixel 5a (5G) to the Pixel 8 Pro, including the Pixel Fold and Pixel Tablet.
- The patch aims to solve Bluetooth interruptions, crashes, and some unresponsiveness within the Pixel ecosystem among many more.
- Google is also attempting another fix for the Pixel Fold's unlock problems as users still encounter a black screen when unlocking their device when folded.
The next quarterly feature drop is about two months away, and Google is continuing its test with the Android 14 QPR2 Beta 3. As detailed by Android Developers, Beta 3 is rolling out now to all enrolled testers with a Pixel 5a (5G) up to the Pixel 8 Pro, alongside the Pixel Fold and Pixel Tablet.
Those looking for the OTA update will find build number AP11.231215.007 as it becomes available. Users on Reddit state the update is around 337MB on the Pixel 8 Pro.
There are six "top issues" Google aims to solve with its March feature drop, and those fixes are as follows:
- Fixed an issue where SPIR-V sequences of OpShiftLeft followed by OpShiftRight didn't produce the expected results for ARM Vulkan driver versions 43.0 and 44.0. (Issue #314048080)
- Fixed issues that sometimes caused Bluetooth connections to be interrupted for some devices. (Issue #315324137, Issue #317798832)
- Fixed issues that sometimes caused a device to crash or become unresponsive after restarting. (Issue #317282987, Issue #316689583, Issue #316188779)
- Fixed issues that in some rare cases caused devices to reboot while in idle mode. (Issue #316903919, Issue #316557374)
- Fixed an issue that caused live wallpapers to stop animating. (Issue #312869160)
- Fixed an issue that prevented Google Assistant from activating in some cases. (Issue #311934282)
Beta 3 offers a few more fixes, which include one for a problem with multi-fingered gestures that caused them to stop working. Another fix has come in regarding Pixel devices not responding when double-tapped or when the power button was pressed to wake its display. "Higher than normal" CPU usage is also reportedly fixed in Beta 3, as well.
For the Pixel Fold, Google states it has fixed an issue users encountered when unlocking the device, closed, caused the inner display to remain black. The company said it fixed this problem during Beta 2, however, it looks like users were still affected by it.
As usual, Google states that enrolled testers should give the update up to five days before it appears. However, you can manually check to see if you've received it by heading into your Settings > System > System updates.
Here's what's new in Android 14 QPR2 Beta 3 🧵 pic.twitter.com/dg83HjRe1PJanuary 10, 2024
Mishaal Rahman dove into Beta 3 and discovered Google added a new "make all apps dark" option within Settings > Accessibility > color and motion. Essentially, the toggleable feature "inverts" the colors of apps that do not support a dark theme, so users can have a seamless experience across all installed applications.
Additionally, the Beta's deep dive revealed a new API in the Android OS that lets apps "programmatically" change media output. Rahman explains apps could choose a specific device for audio and another for video if enabled. The in-development app permission shows it would have access to your connected devices and decide which should handle each task.
Lastly, Android 14 QPR2 Beta 3 seemingly holds clues that Google could roll out its taskbar pinning function soon. When toggled, users would go from a "transient" floating taskbar to a "persistent" one nestled at the bottom of your display.
The update is in preparation for the March 2024 feature drop, which is about two months away — so long as there aren't any problems. The December 2023 drop brought in Google's new AI Model Gemini to the Pixel 8 Pro for on-device tasks like summaries and "Smart Reply in Gboard."
King of the Androids
Google's Pixel 8 Pro arrived packed with AI software for sprucing up your videos with Audio Magic Eraser and Magic Eraser for cutting things out of our photos. Recently, the device picked up Google's new Gemini AI model with a couple of new on-device tasks for summarizing your recordings and more.
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Nickolas is always excited about tech and getting his hands on it. Writing for him can vary from delivering the latest tech story to scribbling in his journal. When Nickolas isn't hitting a story, he's often grinding away at a game or chilling with a book in his hand.