Android TV 13 can reduce the power and bandwidth consumption of your smart TV

It will also improve picture-in-picture mode further

Google tends to drop a new version of Android TV a month or two after releasing the final version of Android on which the operating system will be based. Last year, it released Android TV 12 about a month after Android 12 found its way to Pixel phones. While the company has not yet announced Android TV 13, two of its major changes have been detailed: extended picture-in-picture support and low-power standby mode.

Android TV already supports picture-in-picture mode, with the picture format default to 1.777778: 1, ideal for viewing 16: 9 content. However, developers can create PiP windows with an image size of less than 1: 2.39 or greater than 2.39: 1, if required. As discovered by Espers Mishaal Rahman, Google will further enhance this feature in Android TV 13 by allowing developers to create PiP windows that are smaller or larger than this image format. In addition, a new activity method – setPreferDockBigOverlays – in Android 13 indicates that users can dock the PiP box with the main activity, so “both windows are obvious to the user.”

Android 13 also includes a new “low power standby mode” intended for Android TV. The feature will disable wakelocks and restrict apps from accessing the network when active. This will be a useful addition as apps do not need to access the internet or create unnecessary wakelocks when the TV is off or in standby mode. It should also lead to a reduction in bandwidth consumption and lower energy consumption on your smart TV. These restrictions will be temporarily removed during dormant windows, ensuring that apps do not break completely in this mode.

If Google sticks to the same timeline as last year, you can expect Android TV 13 to be announced in November. Most TV manufacturers spend time rolling out a new version of Android TV, so expect to wait a bit before trying out these features.

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