Android 15 is about to give Pixel 8 phones a major upgrade

Google Pixel 8 Pro held in hand.
(Image credit: Future)

A report from Android Police indicates that Android 15's Powered Off Finding API will be available to the full range of the Google Pixel 8 series and the Google Pixel 9.

One of the biggest complaints about Android phones is the relatively limited scope of their Find My Device network compared to Apple. Android phones currently allow devices to ping off each other using Bluetooth to help locate missing or lost phones. However, most devices will only be able to contribute when powered on.

However, the Android 15 update aims to introduce Powered Off Finding API, which allows the device to store pre-computed Bluetooth beacons in the memory of the Bluetooth controller. These pre-computed beacons can use specialized hardware to find the phone even when it is turned off. The only reported limitation is that the device will need some reserve power to use the function. 

Google Pixel 8 in sand

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

According to the report older Google Pixel models will only need to download Android 15 to use the feature. However, this is only available to the Google Pixel 8, Google Pixel 8 Pro and the upcoming Google Pixel 8a. According to the reports, older phones like the Google Pixel 7 and Pixel Fold can't use Powered Off Finding API. However, it's unclear if this is due to either hardware or software limitations.

Finding turned-off devices is nothing new, as Apple’s Find My has been capable of that for a while. However, it is still an addition that can bring some peace of mind to users. There are still some questions that will need answering. Namely how much power will need to be reserved for the device to function and how accurate the location report will be. 

Android 15 has been relatively quiet on the rumor front, but it seems like the update is more focused on quality-of-life improvements over anything hugely dramatic. It has been reported that the update will allow users to disable haptic feedback on the keyboard, and easily swap Bluetooth devices. There are also rumors that Android 15 could force your apps to display full screen.

We do not have a set release date for Android 15, but it’s likely to be announced at Google I/O 2024, which kicks off May 14. For any updates, check our Android 15 hub. 

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Staff Writer

Josh is a staff writer for Tom's Guide and is based in the UK. He has worked for several publications but now works primarily on mobile phones. Outside of phones, he has a passion for video games, novels, and Warhammer.