Google is introducing new features for Android 13 that should make it easier for users to transition between different audio devices when listening to music. Announced at CES 2023, media notifications will ask users if they want to switch over to a different listening device based on their proximity, allowing you to seamlessly transition between your phone, speakers, headphones, TV, car, and more.
This feature uses the cross-device software development kit (SDK) released by Google last year. The tech uses Bluetooth Low Energy, Wi-Fi, and ultra-wideband to detect which audio devices are physically near the user, and then identifies which device a user may want to use based on their current activity — for example, switching audio playback from a Bluetooth speaker back to your phone if you answer a call.
The “uninterrupted listening” feature shares some similarities with how Apple products can automatically switch between different audio inputs. In a blog post, Sandeep Chivukula, director of product management at Android, said that Google is working with both Spotify and YouTube Music on the notifications feature. Fast Pair, Nearby Share, and Chromecast have also been added to the cross-device SDK to make it easier to use multiple devices.
Google is also working with Spotify to bring Spotify Connect support to Android 13’s media switcher. This will allow users to more easily switch between playing music on an Android mobile or tablet and speakers, TVs, and other devices compatible with Spotify Connect. Google has not announced a release date for either of the two new listening features, only that they’re expected to arrive sometime “this year.”