Following the release of Android 11 on smartphones, Google has now announced the latest version of the software on Android TVs. The launch, which comes almost exactly three months after the release of Android 11 Developer Preview on Android TVs, brings along the latest platform features to the big screen, including improved performance, enhanced privacy, and a number of other changes tailored for a better television-viewing experience.
Android 11 on televisions will bring the same foundational improvements that it brings to smartphones and tablets. According to Google, the latest release will bring enhanced memory management and critical privacy features, like one-time permissions, to make Android TVs faster and more secure. It would also bring updated developer tools and enable many of the features the company announced during the #11WeeksOfAndroid event last month.
Alongside the aforementioned features that are being ported over from the mobile version of the OS, Google is also infusing the latest version of Android TV with a number of exclusive functionalities tailored specifically for televisions. First off, the company says the software now emphasizes media by supporting ‘Auto Low Latency Mode’ and low latency media decoding, along with a new Tuner Framework with updated Media CAS support and extensions to the HAL implementation of HDMI CEC.
Android 11 will also bring better gaming controller support to televisions, silent boot mode for system updates, inactivity prompts, and OEM-configurable wake keys. The software will also offer new framework functionality to developers for managing System LEDs and physical microphone mute buttons also facilitate integrations for devices with far-field microphones, enabling better support for smart home devices.
Android 11 is currently available for the company’s ADT-3 Android TV box, but Google says it will be rolled out by OEMs to compatible devices in the coming months. Given the state of fragmentation on Android TV devices, though, I won’t be holding my breath for an update any time soon.