What you need to know
- Android 13 has added a new “low power standby” mode to Android TV.
- The new feature will disable network access and restrict app features when a smart TV is in standby mode.
- Google seems to be preparing an extended picture-in-picture mode for Android TV 13.
Although Android 13 is still several months away, two essential features for Android TV devices have been discovered that enable smart TVs to reduce power and bandwidth consumption as well as improve picture-in-picture (PiP) mode.
Espers Mishaal Rahman has discovered a new “low power standby” mode as part of his Android 13 dive (via XDA Developers). This upcoming feature will primarily restrict app operation and block network access while an Android TV device is in standby mode.
It will also disable wakelocks while a smart TV is not in use. This makes perfect sense as people rarely need to check notifications on their smart TV.
But these “restrictions are temporarily lifted under canister maintenance windows,” according to Rahman. This mode should also help save some power and reduce bandwidth consumption.
Another smart feature that can be seen in the deep dive is the extended PiP mode. With Android 7.0, Google started supporting PiP on the best Android TVs. Its current aspect ratio is 1.777778: 1, which is optimal for displaying 16: 9 content.
On the other hand, developers can customize the image format of PiP windows between 1: 2.39 and 2.39: 1. In Android 13, they will be able to “create PiP windows that are even longer or wider than before.”
Android 13 has also downloaded a new method of docking the PiP window next to the main activity, so that “both windows are fully visible to the user.”
In addition to these multi-window features, it appears that Google is preparing a “pseudo-split-screen mode with docked, extended PiP windows.”
The next version of Android is expected to be released in October, which means that Android TV 13 may arrive a month later if Google follows the same timeline as last year.