The latest beta preview of Android 13’s second quarterly update has new details about the Google Pixel Tablet dock and ways to use the stylus.
Rather than launching as a simple Android tablet, the Google Pixel tablet will debut with two unique features. First, it will act as the center of your smart home by connecting to a charging dock to become a smart display.
In addition, the Pixel Tablet will be the first Android device to support the Universal Stylus Initiative (USI). That means you can use any compatible USI stylus with Google’s tablet, such as a tablet you may already own for a Chromebook, instead of using a Google stylus. More importantly, USI is helping to make things like pressure sensitivity more standardized across the industry, building more experiences with those features.
Android 13 QPR2 Beta 2, released earlier today, includes new work on both dock charging and stylus battery status, with Google clearly gearing up for the upcoming launch of the Pixel Tablet.
Focusing first on the Pixel tablet’s charging dock, we see Google wisely adding a battery protection feature. By default, the dock only allows the device to charge and stop at 90% capacity.
”To extend your battery life, charging was paused at %1$s while docked. Go to Settings to fully charge your tablet.”
Protect your battery
This helps ensure that the Pixel Tablet maintains usable battery life for years to come. Pixel phones today offer a similar feature, making sure to reach 100% capacity near your normal wake-up time so the battery doesn’t stay full for long. Since Google plans to leave the Pixel tablet in the dock for extended periods of time, a maximum charge of 90% is a safer solution.
Meanwhile, for those looking to use a USI stylus with the Pixel Tablet, one thing to watch out for is that the stylus needs to be charged from time to time. To help you be more aware of pen charging needs, Android 13 QPR2 Beta 2 includes preparation for stylus charging notifications.
Stylus battery low
It’s not yet clear how you charge the Pixel Tablet stylus or if Google even plans to offer its own pen, but it’s clear that the tablet will keep you updated as the battery rises and falls.
The more intriguing addition is a hint at a new “Notetaking” feature. From what we can piece together, pressing a button on your stylus will quickly launch an app for taking notes. This quick note pops up in a bubble so you can quickly set it aside and reopen it when you need it.
The most likely candidate app for this is Google Keep Notes, but as of today, that app doesn’t have the needed Android intent or bubble features. More generally, this support for launching quick notes should also be available for other, future Android tablets that choose to support USI styluses.
Dylan Roussel contributed to this article.
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