Google releases Developer Preview builds on a couple of platforms, but the one for Android Things is handled quite differently. Google tries to hit a yearly update cycle for Android, so we typically see just a couple of Developer Preview updates before the final update. Android Things has hit its 7th Developer Preview update. This update comes with some console enhancements, device updates, new Bluetooth APIs, addresses developer feedback, and more.
The new Developer Preview of Android Things is based on Android 8.1 and it includes support for version 11.8.0 of Google Play Services. One of the major changes highlighted is the console enhancements and device updates. Some of the new features added to the Android Things Console include Product Models, Product Sharing, Analytics, and Update Channels. Devices are now also able to subscribe to different update channels thanks to the new APIs that have been added to UpdateManager.
The team working on Android Things has taken user feedback to heart and added some popular suggestions in this update. This includes improved camera resolution support, support for MIDI, a better way to test Android Things applications, and consistent API naming. Another big change in this update includes the new Bluetooth APIs to help your Android Things IoT device connect to an Android smartphone or tablet.
To get things in sync with these mobile devices, Android Things has received a new a BluetoothConnectionManager API that enables applications to take control of the pairing and connection process. This makes things much easier for the end user as it improves the user experience. To help encourage developers to use Kotlin with Android Things, the team has started publishing Kotlin versions of the Android Things samples that have already been available.
For example, you are now able to download the Button and LED sample in either Kotlin or Java. The company says they will continue this effort and promises more samples using Kotlin will be added very soon.
Source: Android Developers Blog