Android 4.4 KitKat (API 19-20)

Android 4.4 KitKat (API 19-20)

Version 4.4

Release date October 31, 2013


Refreshed interface with white elements instead of blue Clock no longer shows bold hours; all digits are thin. The H, M, and S markings for the stopwatch and timer have been removed, leaving just the numbers.

Ability for applications to trigger translucency in the navigation and status bars

Ability for applications to use “immersive mode” to keep the navigation and status bars hidden while maintaining user interaction

Action overflow menu buttons are always visible, even on devices with a “Menu” key, which was officially deprecated by Android 4.0.

Restriction for applications when accessing external storage, except for their own directories
Optimizations for performance on devices with lower specifications, including zRAM support and “low RAM” device API
Wireless printing capability

NFC host card emulation, enabling a device to replace smart cards

WebViews now based on Chromium engine (feature parity with Chrome for Android 30)

Expanded functionality for notification listener services

Public API for developing and managing text messaging clients

Storage Access Framework, an API allowing apps to retrieve files in a consistent manner. As part of the framework, a new system file picker allows users to access files from various sources (including those exposed by apps, such as online storage services).

New framework for UI transitions

Sensor batching, step detector and counter APIs

Settings application now makes it possible to select default text messaging and home (launcher) application

Audio tunneling, audio monitoring and loudness enhancer

Built-in screen recording feature (primarily for developers, as usage of ADB is required)

Native infrared blaster API

Verified boot

Enforcing SELinux

Expanded accessibility APIs and system-level closed captioning settings

Android Runtime (ART) introduced as a new experimental application runtime environment, not enabled by default, as a

replacement for the Dalvik virtual machine

Bluetooth Message Access Profile (MAP) support

Disabled access to battery statistics by third-party applications

Settings application no longer uses a multi-pane layout on devices with larger screens

Wi-Fi and mobile data activity (TX/RX) indicators are moved to quick settings

Disables text wrapping in the WebView browser component

Camera application now loads Google+ Photos instead of Gallery when swiping away from the camera view

Removal of the “App Ops” application permissions control system, introduced in Android 4.3

Initial release of Android Wear platform for smartwatches: the same as Android 4.4 “KitKat”, but with wearable extensions added

UI updates for Google Maps navigation and alarms

Offline music playback

GPS support