It’s always important for Android apps to work well on a wide variety of screen sizes, chipset types, mobile networks, and more. Testing on slow network speeds is especially important because not everyone has gigabit internet or unlimited 5G data connections, but it’s always been difficult to artificially throttle internet speeds on Android. Fortunately, Android 13 could finally change that.
Google is working on a new feature for the upcoming Android 13 update that will limit any network connection, according to a blog post from Esper. The feature doesn’t work yet, but code from the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) says you’ll be able to set the network speed in bytes per second.
The only problem is that this feature requires kernel-level support, and since most devices don’t receive kernel updates after release, many existing phones and tablets probably won’t support the throttling. of the network. The kernel must also be built with certain configuration options enabled, such as CONFIG_NET_SCHED.
It’s already possible to run the Android Studio emulator with a throttled network connection, but there’s never been an easy way to test slower network connections with an actual physical device. Some developers have used microwave ovens (when not in use) or Faraday cages to weaken wireless signals to a device for testing purposes.
Google also supports network connection throttling in the Chrome web browser, which can be handy for testing the performance of websites or web applications with slow networks. This setting is also available in all Chromium-based web browsers. Apple’s iOS and iPadOS have allowed network throttling in Developer Settings for a while, but to reach this menu one needs to use the Xcode Developer Studio on a Mac.
Android 13 Developer Preview 2 also adds execute permissions for app notifications, improved Japanese text wrapping, new text conversion API for languages like Japanese, COLR fonts, MIDI 2.0, Bluetooth LE Audio and other changes. Check out our main Android 13 Developer Preview 2 coverage for more info and download links for Pixel devices.