Android 11 Bringing More Gamepad Support, Auto Low Latency to Android TV

We’ve been hearing lots about Google’s rumored Android TV hardware over the past few months, and even a potential new name for the operating system. Today, however, Google outlined new software features it’s planning to bring to its TV platform via Android 11.

In a developers blog post, Google lists several features coming to Android TV over the next few months. In addition to performance and privacy improvements, Android 11 will bring support for what’s known as Auto Low Latency Mode. This feature, which newer TVs with onboard HDMI 2.1 can support, reduces latency by turning off post-processing effects that some displays use to improve graphical quality.

Latency, or the delay between inputting a command and having the results of that command reflected on screen, can have a big impact when gaming. So having a mode that automatically reduces effects to improve responsiveness and reduce latency could be a nice benefit for gamers. In fact, both the next-gen Xbox and PlayStation consoles are touting their support for Auto Low Latency Mode on HDMI 2.1 TVs that offer the feature.

Speaking of gaming, Android 11 is also improving third-party gamepad compatibility by adding support for Nintendo’s Switch Pro controller and the Steam controller (via USB).

Google says the Android 11 update should be available on the ADT-3 developer kits today, giving app makers the opportunity to fine-tune their apps for the latest version. Meanwhile, Android TV device makers are expected to launch upgrades to their respective hardware “over the coming months.”