The Pixel 7 only supports 64-bit apps, Google explains why that's a good thing

The back of the black Google Pixel 7
(Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • The Pixel 7 and 7 Pro are the first Android phones to support 64-bit apps only.
  • With the dropping of 32-bit code, Google sees the performance of phone CPUs increasing, a reduction of RAM usage, and faster patches from vendors.
  • 64-bit code also introduces stronger security measures for phones supporting this code.

The Google Pixel 7 series is the first to support 64-bit code only.

According to an Android Developers post, the Google Pixel 7 and 7 Pro are the first 64-bit-only Android phones which the company suspects could become commonplace among other devices. The reason for dropping OS support for 32-bit for the recently release series begins with what 64-bit code can do for a phone's memory.

Google states that 64-bit apps run faster due to the more extensive availability of registers and instructions that aren't made accessible by 32-bit apps. New CPUs are also said to run 25% better when using 64-bit code. Doubling the bit number increases security as 64-bit enhances the effectiveness of ASLR and strengthens other countermeasures to help prevent an intruder from controlling your phone.

This upgrade also saves around 150MB of RAM on Pixel 7 series phones as it clears up some background clutter.

While the Pixel 7 and 7 Pro are the first Android phones to move to 64-bit only support, app developers will soon need to retool their products. Android will bring tools and support for developers so they can begin testing their 64-bit apps for devices to determine any flaws in their coding. These tools, such as HWASan, assist in detecting memory errors and can even help in refining the overall quality of a developer's app.

64-bit-only devices should also see swifter updates for vendors as they can patch critical issues much easier.

As a finishing note, while Google is moving into a 64-bit world, the Play services side will continue to support devices that are running or can only run 32-bit apps, such as Wear OS watches and Android Go phones.

Nickolas Diaz
News Writer

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.