Android 13 is making Material You even more customizable

The upcoming OS is still in the developer previews stage, but it's a sneak peek of what's to come.

Android 13 logo

Google just released the first developer preview for its upcoming Android 13 OS. As the name suggests, these previews are really meant for developers to fine-tune their apps before the latest OS releases. For now, you can think of these as teasers of what’s to come.

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Google is planning to extend its Material You dynamic color beyond its own apps with Android 13. Soon we’ll be able to apply the same color theme to all of the app icons, making the home screen way more pleasing to look at.

A little demo of how the new themed apps icons look. Google

Google is looking at improving its photo picker tool that lets you share photos, videos and whatever else with an app, without giving it access to all the media on your device.

Most Android devices already use this photo picker, but Android 13 will make it a dedicated experience, giving us an easier interface to to have selective control over the privacy of our photos and videos.


Android 13 is also planning on incorporating a new runtime permission for apps so they can request permission for nearby Wi-Fi devices without needing a device’s location. This will help developers design more privacy-friendly apps and we won’t need to share our device’s location as much.


Other minor updates:

-Apps will be able to see what a user’s preferred language is, which should make life easier for multilingual users.

-Developers will be able to implement new effects like ripple, blur and stretch overscroll, which will all a little more finesse to app designs.

-Developers are being encouraged to improve app compatibility for larger screens like tablets, foldables and Chromebooks since they’re getting more popular.


There’s plenty more back-end details in Google’s blog post that’s clearly aimed at developers. This was just the first developer preview and Google is planning for the second one in March. The OS is expected to go into its first beta period in April before making its debut sometime later this year.

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