Following a pair of patches in recent weeks, Google is rolling out Android 12 Developer Preview 3 (DP3) to Pixel phones today. This should be the final developer-quality preview before the Android Beta starts next month.
Android 12 DP3 is an “incremental update for stability and performance.” Developers are advised to “get apps ready for consumer Beta” by releasing a “compatible update over the next few weeks.”
This release offers a number of tools for app developers to improve the user experience:
- New app launch animation: To make “app startup a more consistent and delightful experience,” Google is introducing a default animation from the point of launch, splash screen with the app icon, and transition. Developers will be able to customize the splash screen’s background, replace the app icon, control timing, and more.
- New incoming/outgoing/screened call notifications: Meant to improve visibility, scannability, and consistency, the new CallStyle template is available for dialers or chat apps with video calling. Rising to the top of the notification shade, they support multiple default and custom actions, and can be customized with a large avatar image, text, and button color hints.
- Improved web linking: URLs that haven’t been through Android App Links or manually approved by users are immediately opened by the default web browser instead of the “chooser” dialog.
- Richer haptics: Android 12 is introducing support for more expressive effects, like a low tick, as today’s actuators feature broader frequency bandwidth. The goal is to allow developers to create “informative haptic feedback for UI events.” Similarly, game developers have more access to motors in game controllers. Google says, the Pixel 4 offers the fullest examples of these upcoming APIs today, and that it’s working with OEMs.
- More-flexible backups: Developers can now set different rules (including encryption requirements) for cloud backups and device-to-device transfers. For example, large files can be excluded from the former method, but included in the latter.
Other changes include letting third-party apps take full advantage of Quad/Nona Bayer camera sensors and improving video encoding. There are optimizations to ML performance, while accelerator drivers can be updated outside of OS updates.
Developer Preview system images are available for the Pixel 3 (XL), Pixel 3a (XL), Pixel 4 (XL), Pixel 4a, Pixel 4a 5G, and Pixel 5, as well as the Android Emulator.
Android 12 DP3 (SPP3.210325.010) remains officially “for developers only and not intended for daily or consumer use.” It’s available via manual download or flashing now, with the public-facing Android Beta coming later. Those on DP2.2 will see an OTA update over the next few hours. If you need help, here’s our full guide on installing Android 12.
FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.