If I had to list the advantages of the iPhone over the competition, spatial audio (or Spatial Audio) would certainly be one of them. Indeed, this feature allows you to have an audio experience on a whole new level.
As Apple explains in a help page, “Spatial audio with dynamic head tracking immerses you in a soundscape worthy of a movie theater. The sound of the movies and videos you watch seems to come from all directions. »
And apparently, Google intends to offer the same on its Pixel smartphones. In any case, this is what is suggested by Mishaal Rahman (a source of “leaks” who is regularly mentioned by the media) in a series of tweets published after the launch of the first beta of Android 13.
https://t.co/ef7OBDPx17 in /vendor/lib/soundfx pic.twitter.com/AJftGzxtWU
— Mishaal Rahman (@MishaalRahman) April 26, 2022
As a reminder, compared to the developer previews that Google previously launched, the beta is a more stable version, offered to a wider audience, and which includes more new features. But in addition to the new features that Google has already officially announced, the Android 13 beta would also hide references to other new features that are not yet official in its code.
Rahman says that while digging through this code, he discovered a reference to a new audio effect called “spatializer”, and another reference to spatial audio. The feature is however not yet available on this first beta, but these discoveries suggest that it is under development (or even already tested) by Google.
Unfortunately, we don’t have any more info at this time. And it’s unclear when Google might formalize and roll out this spatial audio feature. We also don’t know which models will be compatible (and with which headphones?). But Google is reportedly developing spatial audio for its own smartphones.
As noted by our colleagues from Android Police, this is not the first time that the media have mentioned the development of spatial audio by Google. Last year, a rumor swirled about a new pair of Pixel Buds wireless headphones that could support spatial audio.
Google would prepare a major offensive on audio technologies
At this time, this information is unofficial. But anyway, Google should soon make important announcements on audio technologies.
In March, we relayed an article from the Protocol site about recent acquisitions by Google in the field. This frenzy suggests that the firm is preparing a major audio offensive.
Among the startups that Google would have bought, there is Dysonic. This would have been bought in 2020 and it would have the necessary technologies to allow Google to offer spatial audio.