The next version of Android for TVs will include "many privacy, performance, accessibility and connectivity features". It includes hidden references to Google's rumored Android TV dongle.
Android 11 on Android TV
At this time, the preview version is available only for Google's ADT-3 device for developers but it will be made available more widely later, leading up to the public release sometime in 2020 or 2021.
- "Today, we are releasing an Android 11 Developer Preview for Android TV with many privacy, performance, accessibility and connectivity features," the company announced.
Google did not detail any new user-facing features but a leaked roadmap has pointed to Google Stadia (game streaming service) launching on Android TV with Android 11, a "next-gen smart home user interface", a "hero device", support for Google Lens and Live Captions, and Google Assistant for set-top boxes. The company also mentioned efforts to reduce fragmentation in hardware and software.
In the Android 11 preview software, 9to5Google has discovered references to the rumored 'Sabrina' Android TV dongle, including this video on how to reboot it.
Is it possible that 'Sabrina' will launch with Android 11? Maybe, but it is worth noting that Android 10 has yet to reach Android TV devices, including TVs from Sony, TCL and Philips that are currently running Android 9 or an earlier version. Nvidia Shield 2019 is also running Android 9.
The announcement comes in the same week as Apple has unveiled tvOS 14, which will offer a robust suite of new features, including enhanced support for games and controllers.
Android 10 for TV added support for additional game controllers, including Nintendo's Switch Pro Controller.
Additional details about Android 11 for Android TV will be announced in mid-August where Google is hosting a virtual 'Android Beyond Phones' session.
- Source: Google, 9to5Google