Google has released the first Android 14 Developer Preview, offering the very first look at the next version of its mobile operating system. Featuring a fresh new logo design apparently inspired by NASA patches for space missions. Android 14 will focus on optimizing background processing to deliver optimal resource usage and improved battery life.
The new OS version is specially designed for tablets and foldables, like the upcoming Google Pixel Fold. Popular foldable devices like the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold4 (review) and Galaxy Z Flip4 (review) should also benefit from Android 14. According to Google, Android 14 “builds on the work of Android 12L and Android 13 to support tablets and foldable form factors”. Thus, even more optimizations for devices with larger displays should be on board. There will no longer be a separate L version and it was not released from Android 13.
In addition, security is another important factor in the development of any new Android version. Android 14 blocks the installation and background access of legacy Android apps that target older versions of the operating system. More precisely, the operating system prevents the installation of apps with a targetSdkVersion lower than level 23, which corresponds to Android 6.
Google is also bringing a slew of system-level security improvements with Android 14, including runtime receivers and read-only dynamic code loading to prevent any possibility of code injection. Google also integrated a credential manager and passkey support to simplify authentication and password management.
Also, Android 14 brings a new accessibility feature called non-linear font scaling. This allows system fonts to be scaled up to 200% and the operating system will automatically apply the appropriate scaling for smaller submenus. There are also new personalization options based on the Material You theme introduced with Android 12.
Android 14 downloads
Google plans to release Android 14 Developer Preview 2 in March. After that, new developer releases will come monthly, and finally the second stable release in July. The first public betas will come in August and September. You can already test the current version. However, you need a Google Pixel 7 Pro, Pixel 7, Pixel 6a, Pixel 6 Pro, Pixel 6, Pixel 5a 5G, Pixel 5 or a Pixel 4a 5G. All downloads can be found on the official Android developer portal.