Android 13 will warn you when older apps require access to all media file types | #android | #security

Google’s splitting up permissions, but not every app will support it

Android 13 Beta 3 is a landmark release for this year’s big upgrade, cementing it as “platform stable” as we move closer to an official release later this year. Gone are the days of major changes and UI reinventions — this release is all about small tweaks in the run-up to a stable build. Android 13 focuses primarily on privacy and security, but at least one of its primary lockdowns won’t work with apps targeting older versions of Android. At the very least, Google wants to ensure its users are warned before opening a potentially unsafe app.

When Android 13 Beta 1 was announced, one of the most significant changes Google highlighted was media file permissions. Previously, apps could access photos, videos, music, and more all through a single permission, prompting the user once to view this content. Android 13 goes granular, divvying up those categories into their own camps to prevent rogue music players from browsing your gallery. It’s a big change, but to pull it off, only apps targeting the latest Android version will support it.


To make up for this potential lapse in security, you’ll receive a warning for any app that can’t have its media permissions split up because it targets an older Android version. Mishaal Rahman of tweeted a screenshot of what this notification looks like, informing users that any such app can view all of their media files — not just music, videos, or photos exclusively. I’m not seeing this change on Beta 3 just yet, so it’s likely something that’ll arrive once more developers are targeting Android 13.

Today’s release brings us one step closer to a stable build, though we have at least one more beta drop to go before that happens. In the meantime, getting onboard the Android 13 train has never been easier, thanks to its improved stability over earlier betas. If you’re rocking a Pixel phone, it only takes a few minutes of your time to join in on the early release fun.

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