Android 11 is finally being release for Android smartphones that are slated to get the major update. But Android TV owners will also be getting something to look forward to as they will also soon be getting Android 11 on the platform. However, most of the improvements that you’ll see here are more under-the-hood rather than new features or even feature updates. These improvements are most welcome of course as you’re meant to get a better Android TV (or soon, Google TV?) experience.
Some of the improvements mentioned on the blog post announcing Android 11 on Android TV are also part of what smartphone and tablet users will be experiencing with the update. These are things like enhanced memory management and one-time permissions for privacy concerns. Basically, whatever it is that the other platforms will be experiencing with Android 11, Android TV should be getting the same.
But there are also some improvements that will be coming that are specific to the Android TV experience. If you love playing games on your TV set, you will now get better gaming controller support. It will natively support the Nintendo Pro Switch Controller over Bluetooth and USB plus the Steam Controller over USB. You also get silent boot mode for system updates, inactivity prompts and OEM configurable wake keys.
You also now get support for Auto Low Latency Mode and low latency media decoding. The former was introduced with the HDMI 2,1 spec and this has the ability to turn off graphics post-processing to reduce latency. You get a new Tuner Framework and extension to the HAL implementation of HDMI CEC. A lot of these improvements may be unintelligible to the common consumer but it will definitely make your viewing or playing experience better.
The Android 11 update for Android TV will be rolling out to ADT-3 developer kits so the creators and distributors of apps can get their products ready for the update. When this will roll out to consumers is dependent on the respective OEMs.