It’s a bit earlier than the usual March release, but today Google is launching the first (Android) (Developer Preview) . This first OS preview is coming to the Pixel 2, 3, 3a, and 4, along with generic system images for Project Treble devices. It also has a new name. Typically these releases have been denoted by a letter — Android 15 was the “Android Q Preview” —and while Android 15 is still called “Android R” internally, publicly this is the “Android 13 Developer Preview “to all us non-Googlers. True to form, Google has already started with the Spinal Tap references and starts the blog post with a dial that (goes to) For now we’re just working off a giant blog post with lots of bullet points, and nearly zero screenshots, so we’re not sure what the scope of this release is really like. We’ll have a hands-on later, but for now, here are some highlights. One of the most-used features of Android Google Google never stops tweaking the Android notification panel, and this year Google says the panel is getting a “dedicated conversations section in the notification shade.” Again, we’re working with zero screenshots here, but Google says users will be able to “instantly find their ongoing conversations with people in their favorite apps.” Android segmented the notification panel into high- and low-priority notifications, so maybe we’ll get a third slice of the notification panel for conversations? We should also get ready to see a lot more of the “Bubbles” API that (debuted in Android as a developer preview. The Bubbles API would shrink a messaging app down into a minimizable floating circle featuring your contact’s face. This year, it seems to be out of the dev preview state and is ready for apps. The modularization of Android also continues in Android . Android 15 spent a great deal of its engineering budget on “ Project Mainline, “aka” Google Play System Updates, “which moved a lot of system components into either updatable APKs or a new, more powerful file format called” APEX. ” APEX is a file format custom-designed to be accessible earlier in the boot process and to have more permissions than an APK, making it ideal for housing and updating lower-level system components.