Android 14, the new version of Google’s mobile operating system, is now available. Those from Mountain View have taken advantage of the launch event of the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro to introduce the software, after several months of beta testing.
As usual, the first to receive the update will be Pixel device users. Android 14 is compatible with the Pixel 4a 5G and all models of the Pixel 5, 6 and 7 lines. While the phones presented today have this version preinstalled, of course.
It is not yet known when the software will reach other brands’ phones. Google mentions that devices from Samsung, Xiaomi, Nothing, Oppo, Realme, OnePlus, Sony, iQOO, Sharp, vivo and Tecno will receive Android 14 before the end of the year. Anyway, availability will vary by brand, depending on how long it takes them to customize it.
The main new features of Android 14
An interesting point about Android 14 is that Google maintains the common thread of the two previous editions, placing great emphasis on customization tools. And, how could it be otherwise, Californians want to take advantage of the push for generative AI to help you make your smartphone look unique.
Among the new features of Android 14 is the option to create wallpapers using text descriptions. Users will be able to choose from a wide variety of preset options and modify them to their liking with the help of artificial intelligence. However, this feature will initially be exclusive to the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro, and will later be released to other devices.
Another customization tool that arrives with the new operating system allows you to create exclusive lock screens. It is, in a way, very similar to what we have seen in iOS 16 and 17. Android 14 will offer templates with different formats, widgets, colors and fonts that can be combined to achieve an unparalleled look. In addition, it will be possible to configure shortcuts to specific applications or functions, or choose which information is most visible without having to unlock the screen.
Increased focus on privacy and accessibility
But not everything in Android 14 has to do with the aesthetic section. Google’s new software now will provide more information when apps share your data with third parties. This will be visible when you are asked to provide access to certain sensitive information – your location, for example – so you can better decide what to do about it.
On the other hand, a new section for health information will be added to the operating system settings. There, all synchronized data from exercise applications will be protected and encrypted, allowing you to manage it privately from a single place.
It is also important to highlight the adoption of new accessibility options in Android 14. In this sense, Google has focused on those people with hearing and vision problems.
Thus, it will be possible to configure notifications so that, in addition to sound, they use the flash and/or the screen to show a light pattern; and it will be easier to configure a mobile phone to use it with a hearing aid. On the other hand, the magnifying glass will be simplified, being able to increase or reduce its size with the gesture of clicking with your fingers on the screen. In addition, it can be kept open, even when changing apps.
These are some of the other features that will arrive with Android 14 on compatible devices:
- Support for HDR images on smartphones with screens compatible with this technology;
- The option to set grayscale themes;
- Use your phone as a webcam by connecting it to a computer via USB-C. According to Google, this feature will be available in select countries;
- Controls optimized for Google Home, accessible from the lock screen and software quick options;
- The ability to adjust the font size at the system level from the quick controls.