Android 15 To Bring A Host Of New Security Features And AV1 Support To Phones

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Android 15 Beta 2 has dropped for developers with plenty of new features in tow. Among the highlights are new privacy and security functions, efficiency tweaks to both UI and software, and improved GPU processing. Of course, Beta 2 is available for anyone willing to try at their own risk. Also, we want to remind you that some of the features listed here may not make to the stable build.

Google's Android 15 (codenamed Vanilla Ice Cream) has steadily graduated from Developer Preview status to early Beta release in April, and now into Beta 2. The final stable release is expected to drop something late Summer or early Fall, just in time for the launch of the Pixel 9 series. In the meantime, here are some of the exciting Beta 2 features to look out for:
  • Private Space: Beta 2 introduces Private Space which allows users to hide and lock sensitive apps behind a separate user profile. When locked, apps in the separate container are hidden from recent view, notifications, settings, and access by other apps.
  • Battery and performance improvements: In a bid to improve speed and battery life, Beta 2 requires that foreground services now have a 6-hour cap on dataSync and media processing, beyond which they're moved to the background. Android 15 also brings 16KB page support to speed up system boot up times (by almost 1 second on average), app launches (like the camera app), as well as reduces power draw when apps launch (by up to 4.5 percent).
  • Large screen multitasking: Beta 2 improves on ways users interact with Android on large screen devices like tablets. For one, users can now pin their favorite combination of split-screen app configuration for quick access. 
  • Dav1d decoding: Beta 2 introduces improved AV1 software decoding with native dav1d support, which means users can enjoy HD AV1 playback even on mid-to low-tier devices.
  • Predictive Back: Yes, this currently exists on Android 14 (or Android 13 Beta if you're pedantic), but Android 15 brings this out as a mainstream feature, rather than as a developer-only function. Rather than showing a back arrow when you swipe back in an application, Predictive Back navigation shows a preview of what you'll return to before you finish the swipe.
For now, Android 15 Beta 2 is open to devices including Google's Pixel 6 (and up), OnePlus' 12/12R, the Vivo X100, the IQoo 12, Nothing's 2(a), and select handsets, tablets, and foldables from Honor, Lenovo, OnePlus, Oppo, Realme, Sharp, Tecno, and Xiaomi.