According to the report, the new project was recently discovered in Google’s development resources. The company is currently testing a 64-bit-only build of Android 13 for a device called “Tangor,” which is also the codename for the Pixel tablet.
Importance of switching to 64-bit-only builds
The report claims that removing support for 32-bit apps can help reduce RAM usage, but it also means the tablet won’t be able to run any 32-bit apps. However, this shouldn’t be much of a problem as most apps in the Play Store now support 64-bit architecture. Google has long been working towards a 64-bit version of Android, so the transition is “in line with the current Android app development trajectory,” the report added.
Android 12 is the first version of the operating system compiled with 64-bit only components. The same goes for the recently released Android 13.
Why is Google so late to the 64-bit club Apple in 2017
Apple adopted a 64-bit-only architecture for its App Store in 2017. The move shouldn’t be too difficult for Apple as the company controls the market for its software, hardware, and apps. This makes it easier for developers to apply changes.
On the other hand, Google’s open-source operating system relies on a number of distribution options and device manufacturers that the company needs to take into account before announcing any major transitions.
The report also says that the Chinese market has been a big deal for a long time as it offers multiple app stores to co-exist. This makes it difficult for the company to enforce such a big change. However, these stores have now agreed to remove 32-bit app support for the convenience of Android users around the world.
How chip makers could have forced change
According to the report, most mobile processors are based on ARM chip designs and they may have forced the company to adopt a 64-bit-only architecture. These companies are gradually moving to 64-bit-only architectures because they have introduced “asymmetric chips” where only a handful of cores support 32-bit applications.
Furthermore, ARM recently introduced Cortex-X3 and Cortex-A715 which only support 64-bit processes. Additionally, the company has even redesigned the Cortex-A510 to only offer optional 32-bit compatibility upon special request, the report notes.
How will this change affect Pixel phones?
The report suggests that the company may want to use the Pixel tablet to test consumer and app developers’ reaction to the 64-bit machine, before applying the same to its “product line”. most important hardware”. However, Google may also want to move its entire product line to 64-bit only by 2023, which is possible if the company uses its custom Tensor SoCs.
However, end users may not notice much of a difference as the Play Store began delegating 64-bit releases in 2019. In 2021, this requirement is extended to all apps. so that a 64 bit only device will be able to run all recently updated apps.