Each version of Android has a list of news, although when the update arrives on your mobile you can be surprised: some of the news are not present on your mobile. This is so because not all of them are mandatory, but manufacturers can decide whether to include them in their customization layers or not.

These requirements are included in Google’s CDD (Compatibility Definition Document), which can be found here. The version for Android 11 is not yet finalized, but a previous version rules three Android 11 functions that will be optional– The new shutdown menu, chat conversation notifications, and the credentials API.

Implement or not, in the hands of manufacturers

In the Android compatibility definition document, Google uses the English terms MUST, MUST NOT, REQUIRED, SHALL, SHALL NOT, SHOULD, SHOULD NOT, RECOMMENDED, MAY and OPTIONAL to dictate which parts of the system functions should be implemented and which ones are not strictly necessary.

In practice, it’s kind of like Google’s commandments. If a function is indicated as MUST, The manufacturers they must include it in order to integrate Google services. If indicated MUST NOT (or SHALL NOT), then manufacturers are prohibited from including those settings in their Android version if they want to integrate Google services. Other rules are less blunt, leaving the choice to manufacturers.

Household controls


Home controls involve integrating widgets to control various smart devices directly from the shutdown menu, such as smart lights, smart locks, and more. Although an earlier version of the CDD document stated that it was mandatory to include support for these home controls, the requirement has been removed in the last revision.

Unless there are last-minute changes, it appears that household controls may or may not be implemented, according to the judgment of the manufacturer of the Android layer. In case it is implemented, Google includes several rules on how its implementation should be.

Group conversations in notifications


As usual in the latest versions of Android, Android 11 changes how notifications work and are grouped, classifying them into three groups: Conversations, Alert Notifications, and Muted Notifications.

The first of these, Conversations, groups messages from messaging applications to keep them handy. However, the CDD document does not require manufacturers to include this function, but is defined as an implementation highly recommended, which is not mandatory.

Credentials API


Finally we have the IdentityCredential API, intended as a standardized Android way to save identity documents as driving licenses. Again, the document indicates that the implementation of this function is highly recommended, although not mandatory.

So, even if a mobile receives Android 11 with Google applications in the future, that does not mean that it has the three previous functions. It should also be noted that there could still be more changes to the CDD document between now and the final release of Android 11.

Track | 9to5Google

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