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Android 4.3 revealed

Yesterday Google officially presented Android 4.3 together with the new Nexus 7, which will ship with the newest version of Android.

Android 4.3 has been leaked all over and most of the features were open secrets even before yesterday's live stream presentation. It will be the featured operating system of the new Nexus 7. What are the actual changes?

Android 4.2.2 already allowed multiple user profiles. With Android 4.3 users are now able to create restricted profiles limiting access to apps and content for each single profile individually. This allows for guest accounts and profiles for children.

Another new feature is the compatibility with Bluetooth Low Energy (or Bluetooth Smart). While the classic Bluetooth has a constant stream, Bluetooth Smart uses bursts of data sent as packages. Devices that use this method are for example sensors and remote controls.

Gamers will be looking forward to the implementation of OpenGL ES 3.0, the new 3D standard for mobile devices. Other features that have only been mentioned shortly in the live stream were easier text input, faster user switching and a dial pad auto-complete which should complete telephone numbers for you as you type them.

All in all some interesting new features but surely short of a revolution. Updates to Android 4.3 will be available shortly for the latest tablets and smartphones, the most prominent being Nexus 4 and Nexus 10 as well as the Samsung Galaxy S4.


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Kurt Jonke, 2013-07-25 (Update: 2021-05-18)