Android 15: Release Date, Features, New Leaks & Latest Rumors

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With over three billion Android users worldwide, expectations are high for Android 15 to be bigger and better than its predecessor.

The first Android 15 Beta was released on April 11 and unveiled a range of enhancements and innovative features  — including a new approach to notification controls, boosted game performance, an “even dimmer” night mode, screen sharing protection, and better foldable support.

And arriving by surprise just days later, Android 15 Beta 1.2 was released on April 25. It primarily brought bug fixes to give early users a smooth experience.

The Android community is scrutinizing these latest updates, which prioritize productivity improvements, strengthen user privacy, and broaden app accessibility.

But when is Android 15 coming out?

Join us as we dig through the evidence and explore everything from UI updates to performance and security features.

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Key Takeaways

  • Android 15 focuses on performance, productivity, privacy, and security enhancements.
  • Streamlined notification management will hide clutter from the notification shade.
  • A security mode prevents personal notifications from showing during screen shares, like in presentations or video calls.
  • Satellite connectivity support.
  • But in-built AI features are so far conspicuous by their absence.
  • Users enrolled in the Android Beta Program are already exploring the new OS version, and receiving early patches and bug fixes over-the-air. 

Android 15 Release Date

Expected Release: August – October 2024

Known internally as Vanilla Ice Cream, Android 15 Beta was unveiled to developers on April 11, offering a preview of mobile technology’s future.

Maintaining its recent, more professional tradition, Google has not given its operating systems dessert-themed public names since Android 10 — opting for simple version numbers instead.

However, behind the scenes, the playful Google spirit and codenames live on.

When will Android 15 be released? With the Android 15 developer preview expected to achieve platform stability by July, the final release is likely timed to align with the Pixel 9 series launch in October, similar to last year’s schedule.

However, Android 13 was released in August 2022, leading some to speculate that Android 15 could drop sooner.

Android 15 Features: What’s New?

App Archiving

Introduced last year in Google Play, app archiving has been great for Android users, allowing them to reclaim significant storage space by partially removing seldom-used apps while retaining user data.

With Android 15, this feature gains an even deeper integration into the operating system, offering built-in support for archiving and unarchiving, thus simplifying implementation across all app stores.

Android 15 enhances this functionality by allowing apps with the REQUEST_DELETE_PACKAGES permission to request archiving through the PackageInstaller’s requestArchive method. This process removes the APK and cached files but keeps the user data intact.

Archived apps remain accessible and are displayed with a distinct UI treatment via the LauncherApps APIs, ensuring users know these apps are archived but still retrievable.

If a user decides to access an archived app, the OS prompts the installer to unarchive it, a process that can be tracked via the ACTION_PACKAGE_ADDED broadcast. This seamless integration into Android 15 streamlines the user experience and sets a standard for how app stores can implement a more flexible and user-friendly approach to managing app storage.

Notification Cooldown

In other Android 15 news spotted in the beta, there is the welcome ability to further refine how users manage the ever-growing flurry of notifications on their devices. In previous versions, all notification channels created by an app were visible, potentially overwhelming users with information overload.

Android 15 addresses this by hiding these inactive channels by default, simplifying the user experience and helping focus attention on the notifications that matter most. Users interested in fine-tuning their notification settings can easily choose to view these hidden channels, giving them complete control while maintaining an uncluttered interface. This update promises to streamline notification management significantly, making it easier than ever to tailor alerts to personal preferences.

Satellite Connectivity Support

One of the standout Android 15 features will improve mobile connectivity by extending comprehensive support for satellite communications.

This update enhances the platform’s capacity to keep users connected even when traditional network services are out of reach. It also introduces vital UI elements to deliver a consistent user experience across satellite connectivity scenarios.

Additionally, new APIs enable apps to recognize when a device is linked to a satellite, which helps them understand and adapt to situations where complete network services might be unavailable.

Beyond emergency communications, Android 15 expands the functionality to everyday applications, allowing SMS and RCS apps to send and receive messages through satellite connections, ensuring continuous communication capabilities regardless of terrestrial network availability.

This development promises a significant leap forward in providing users with a means to stay connected virtually anywhere.

Enhanced Bluetooth Functionality

Android 15 enhances the management of Bluetooth connections, offering a more intuitive and efficient experience through Quick Settings. Previously, users could only toggle Bluetooth on or off via this menu, but with the latest update, the functionality expands significantly.

Now, when tapping the Bluetooth icon in Quick Settings, a popup dialog appears, providing options to connect or disconnect from paired devices, access settings for individual devices, and initiate pairing with new accessories.

This upgraded feature allows smoother transitions between different Bluetooth accessories and simplifies managing connections, which is especially useful for those with multiple Bluetooth devices.

New ‘Even Dimmer’ Feature Enhances Nighttime Use

Android 15 is poised to introduce a feature called “even dimmer,” which will enhance the usability of devices in low-light conditions, such as when using your phone in bed.

Building on the existing “extra dim” functionality, which reduces screen brightness by toning down bright colors, the new “even dimmer” setting will allow the display to lower brightness beyond its current capabilities.

The feature is expected to be integrated under the “adaptive brightness” settings, making it more accessible and ensuring a comfortable viewing experience in darker environments.

By extending the brightness range downward, Android 15 aims to provide a more eye-friendly screen in scenarios where minimal light is preferable, thereby addressing user needs for less disruptive light exposure during nighttime usage.

Screen Sharing Safeguard

Android 15 is also gearing up to introduce a critical privacy feature that could significantly change how we share our screens. Dubbed “Sensitive content protection,” this new setting aims to shield personal notifications and messages from being displayed during screen shares, such as in presentations or video calls.

This feature’s necessity becomes evident in scenarios where unintentional leaks of private communications can occur, potentially leading to embarrassing or compromising situations.

While still under development, this feature promises to enhance user privacy by providing the ability to designate which notifications or apps should be hidden during screen-sharing sessions.

This will probably be most welcomed by Android tablet users, where screen-sharing to an external display is a handy feature.

New Storage Health Insights

Android 15 is set to revolutionize how users manage their device’s longevity with a new “Device Diagnostics” app feature, which will provide crucial insights into the remaining lifetime of a phone’s internal storage.

As storage chips degrade over time due to usage, this feature will help users gauge the health and operational capacity of their device’s storage.

By offering an estimated percentage of the storage chip’s remaining life, Android 15 allows users to better plan for hardware maintenance or upgrades, enhancing device management and reliability.

This move comes as part of Google’s broader initiative to give users more detailed information about their device’s key components, ensuring they have all the necessary tools to optimize and extend the life of their hardware.

‘ADPF’ Boosts App and Game Performance

The Android Dynamic Performance Framework (ADPF) is a robust suite of APIs designed to empower game developers and creators of performance-intensive apps to fine-tune their applications.

ADPF facilitates a more intimate interaction between these applications and Android devices’ power and thermal management systems, allowing for real-time monitoring and adjustments based on system performance metrics.

The direct interface helps maintain optimal performance without risking the device overheating. Critical features of ADPF include the ability to monitor thermal states, provide CPU performance hints, and optimize gameplay through user-configurable settings for either performance or battery life.

Furthermore, Android 15 introduces a new Power Efficiency Mode, reinforcing the framework’s commitment to balancing peak performance with energy efficiency. This ongoing development of ADPF ensures smoother, more responsive gaming experiences and enhances overall device sustainability under heavy loads.

Improved Foldable Support

Android 15 will improve how apps interact with a foldable phone’s smaller yet fully capable cover displays. Developers can tailor their apps for these compact screens, ensuring a smoother user experience.

This improvement not only helps apps look and perform better on the outer displays but also allows for restricting less compatible apps to the main display only, enhancing overall device usability and performance.

Android 15 Beta 1.2 Update Brings Fixes

For those running Android 15, the Beta 1.2 release of April 25 primarily introduced bug fixes, including:

  • Fixed an issue that sometimes caused apps to freeze and display an “Application Not Responding” message. (Issue #328865524)
  • Fixed a system performance issue that caused excessive battery drain in some cases. (Issue #335718464, Issue #335188185)
  • Fixed an issue that caused the system Settings app to crash when trying to add a fingerprint. (Issue #334035378, Issue #335481930)
  • Fixed an issue that prevented the system back gesture from working in some cases. (Issue #331303569, Issue #334738577)
  • Fixed an issue that could cause the screen to flicker repeatedly. (Issue #325555461)

For those who are enrolled in the Android Beta Program, the release should arrive over-the-air (OTA).

Eligible devices include Pixel 8, Pixel 8 Pro, Pixel 7a, Pixel 7 Pro, Pixel 7, Pixel 6a, Pixel 6 Pro, Pixel 6, Pixel Fold, and Pixel Tablet.

The Bottom Line

As Apple gears up to fully embrace AI everywhere at its WWDC event, Android focuses on a much-needed sensible belts-and-braces approach to the Android 15 update that emphasizes subtle yet practical improvements.

For many fans, these thoughtful enhancements that address everyday inconveniences are far more valuable than flashy gimmicks that prioritize technology for the sake of technology over user needs.

That said, it is a little surprising to see nothing that screams artificial intelligence hidden in the beta — maybe Google is leaving that to Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) or keeping something up its sleeve?

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Neil C. Hughes
Senior Technology Writer
Neil C. Hughes
Senior Technology Writer

Neil is a freelance tech journalist with 20 years of experience in IT. He’s the host of the popular Tech Talks Daily Podcast, picking up a LinkedIn Top Voice for his influential insights in tech. Apart from Techopedia, his work can be found on INC, TNW, TechHQ, and Cybernews. Neil's favorite things in life range from wandering the tech conference show floors from Arizona to Armenia to enjoying a 5-day digital detox at Glastonbury Festival and supporting Derby County.  He believes technology works best when it brings people together.