Last week, Google finally released the first Android 11 beta build, following a long period of testing developer previews. Android 11 includes a handful of new features focused on privacy, as well as more visible changes such as the Bubbles API. We've compiled some of the best changes in this release, if you're interested.
Being that it's a beta release, it naturally came with a few issues, some that were known and some that weren't. Today, the company has released Android 11 Beta 1.5 with a focus on fixes. There are no new features you should expect in this release, but there some major fixes, including for some crashes that forced devices to reboot. Here's what's been fixed:
- Devices no longer crash (reboot) while using gesture navigation to switch apps in different orientations while rotating the device at the same time.
- On Pixel 3 and 3a, users setting up devices after reset can now activate a pSim service if the phone is currently using an eSIM service.
- Fixed issues that users were having when using contactless payments through Google Pay.
- The system no longer incorrectly enforces the Bluetooth privileged permission for RemoveBond. This resolves issues that could affect pairing, unpairing, and bond reset flows for Bluetooth devices, such as for Forget Watch on Wear OS devices.
Despite the fixes, this release isn't without its own set of known issues, specifically with Android Auto. Users may hear audio coming from the phone's speaker rather than the car's speaker system when connected to Android Auto and listening to music, and it's also possible that Android Auto projection just won't start when you plug in your phone. Some of these issues can be fixed by updating Android Auto itself, Google Play Services, or the Google app, and the audio issue specifically is already fixed in internal builds of Android Auto being tested inside Google. In other words, you might not need to wait for a new beta release for these to be fixed.
If you're interested in joining the Android 11 Beta and haven't yet, you can follow our guide to register for the beta program. It only applies to Pixel phones, and other smartphone manufacturers will be releasing their own previews for Android 11 separately, such as in the case of OnePlus.