Tips

Android 11 Developer Preview vs Android 11 Beta: All you need to know

Google recently announced the first developer preview for Android 11, the next version of its mobile operating system. The release is for developers only so that they can develop apps and test them in the new system. There are a handful of features that are present on this first preview for Android 11 but we expect more to be added in future releases.

Inside its Android Developer website, Google has shared a rough timeline for the rollout of Android 11. The Mountain View company says that more developer preview releases will come in the next few months before moving on to Android 11 beta which will be available for public testing. Only after successful beta testing will Google release the final build of Android 11 to eligible devices.

What is Android 11 Developer Preview

Android 11 Developer Preview 1 is the first version of Android 11 that Google released on February 19th. This year’s developer preview release is the earliest among any Android version released previously. Developer Previews will test new features, new API versions, and changes in the behavior of the system so that developers can identify compatibility issues in their apps and plan migration to the new platform.

In its release notes, Google has mentioned that it will keep releasing more developer previews before May, with at least two of them arriving each in the months of March and April. The last developer preview will focus on stability and performance so that developers can get their apps ready for beta users.

Related: 8 best game-changing features in Android 11

What is Android 11 beta

Android 11 beta is the version of Android that will be available as an over-the-air update for early adopters who enrolled in the Android Beta program. With initial beta releases, Google wants developers to test the compatibility of their apps and gather feedback so as to start early testing with targeting Android 11. The first Android 11 beta is set to release in May 2020.

Google will then release a second build in June followed by a third beta release in Q3 2020. With the second Android 11 beta, Google will introduce the Platform Stability milestone, which will mean that the next version of the mobile OS has reached the final internal and external APIs. This will help developers plan their final testing and release. With beta 2, Google wants developers to finalize compatibility testing for apps, SDKs, and libraries.

As for the third beta, Google hasn’t revealed the exact month of release but we can expect it to arrive early in Q3 2020. Once that releases, the company wants developers to release the final compatible updates for apps, SDKs, and libraries and publish them on Google Play.

Can you install Android 11 DP1?

The first Android 11 developer preview has been released for developers only but technically, YES, you can install it if you own an eligible device. The following set of devices are currently eligible with Android 11 DP1:

  • Pixel 4/XL
  • Pixel 3a/XL
  • Pixel 3/XL
  • Pixel 2/XL

Related:

While you can still load the preview, Google suggests that you wait a little longer to try Android 11 if you are not a developer. The company says on-developers can soon register for Android Beta enrollments on their eligible phones to get Android 11 beta when it releases in May.

Can you install Android 11 Beta?

Android 11 beta hasn’t yet released and so, NO, you cannot download and install Android 11 Beta even if you own a compatible smartphone. The first Android 11 beta is set to release in May 2020 and will be available to early adopters who enroll in Android Beta.

Just like the Android 11 DP1, beta builds, when made available, can be installed on all Pixel phones with the exception of the OG Pixel and Pixel XL. This means that Android 11 Beta will be available for the Pixel 4/4 XL, Pixel 3a/3a XL, Pixel 3/3 XL, and Pixel 2/2 XL devices.

Why should you NOT install Android 11 DP 1

Google has posted general notes about the current preview release and why you should not update your phones to Android 11 DP.

  • SafetyNet approvals are still pending: Google uses SafetyNet to detect whether your device is modified using root permissions or a custom ROM. If SafetyNet isn’t approved for your version of Android, you will no longer be able to use your phone as your primary mobile payment solution. This means that with the current Android 11 DP 1, you cannot use banking apps including Google Pay to make payments.
  • Stability, battery, or performance issues
  • Not appropriate for users with accessibility needs
  • Some apps may not function properly

Related: 


What do you think about Android 11? Let us know in the comments below!