The most exciting thing about a big Android update is being able to follow the trail of breadcrumbs that point to new features. Google’s Android 12 update marked the biggest visual redesign of the operating system since Android 5 Lollipop thanks to Material You. The new design philosophy, along with an exhaustive list of new features, made Android 12 look and feel radically different from previous iterations. Android 13 then came along and doubled down on many of the same aesthetic choices, and Android 14 did the same. Now we’re in the waiting room for Android 15, and we already have some ideas of what to expect.
To be clear, Android 15’s first developer preview isn’t here yet, but we expect it to arrive in a few months’ time. Each new release will add new features and smaller improvements to different elements of the Android system. We expect that around February or so, supported Pixel devices and maybe even some other non-Pixel phones will get their first developer preview. If you want all there is to know about Android 15 in one place, then you’ve come to the right page.
What’s Android 15 called?
Google ditched its dessert naming scheme for Android years ago with Android 10’s brand redesign. The use of dessert names, however, has continued for the company’s internal development teams. Android 11, for instance, was called Red Velvet, while Android 12 is known as Snow Cone. Similarly, Android 13 is called Tiramisu, and Android 14 is Upside Down Cake. Google has since been a lot more open about its internal development names, and Android 15 is called Vanilla Ice Cream.
For those of you who are curious, these have been the dessert names (internal or public) of all the Android versions so far:
- Android 1.5: Cupcake
- Android 1.6: Donut
- Android 2.0: Eclair
- Android 2.2: Froyo
- Android 2.3: Gingerbread
- Android 3.0: Honeycomb
- Android 4.0: Ice Cream Sandwich
- Android 4.1: Jelly Bean
- Android 4.4: KitKat
- Android 5.0: Lollipop
- Android 6.0: Marshmallow
- Android 7.0: Nougat
- Android 8.0: Oreo
- Android 9: Pie
- Android 10: Quince Tart
- Android 11: Red Velvet Cake
- Android 12: Snow Cone
- Android 13: Tiramisu
- Android 14: Upside Down Cake
- Android 15: Vanilla Ice Cream
There is no known release date for Android 15 yet, but we suspect that it will follow the same release cadence as in previous years. Android 14 dropped in its developer preview form in February 2023, followed by another developer preview, then four more beta releases until the final release of Android 14 with the launch of the Google Pixel 8 series. We can expect then that the first developer preview for Android 15 will be around the same time.
For developers, you can expect to see Android 15 hit “platform stability” sometime around the third beta if Google follows the same release timeline as last year. Platform stability refers to the finalization of APIs and last year, it coincided with the ability for developers to submit apps targeting the new API level on the Google Play Store.
Will my device get Android 15?
If you have a recent Google Pixel smartphone, like the new Pixel 8 series, rest assured that you will be one of the first to get a taste of Android 15 when it drops. It will still only be in developer preview form (and thus, probably shouldn’t be installed on your daily driver), but you’ll still be able to try it out. We also expect other device manufacturers to join in on the fun, though it tends to be the case that devices from places like OnePlus and Xiaomi aren’t updated as regularly. In other words, beware.
However, if you really want to try Android 15 when it comes out on your smartphone, and there’s no official build, you can try out a Generic System Image (GSI). We’ll be sure to update this section with more information when the first developer preview drops. We expect the first Developer Preview to arrive in February, which would be keeping in time with previous releases.
What’s new in Android 15 so far?
Given that Android 15 is so far away, we don’t really know what to expect just yet. However, we expect leaks to trickle in over time with new information relating to the next big Android release.
Turning NFC into a Project Mainline module
Mishaal Rahman reported recently that NFC would likely become a Project Mainline module in Android 15, allowing for it to be updated outside of normal Android version updates. It appears to be a part of Google’s “ThreadNetwork,” where Thread is the networking technology behind Google Nest products. It’s long been rumored that Google is working on an AirTag competitor, and this may be related to that work.