Google Pixel 6 can use more USB devices on Android 12L QPR3
Google started public beta testing for Android’s Quarterly Platform Releases, or QPRs for short, earlier this month with the release of Android 12 QPR3 Beta 1. There wasn’t a detailed changelog for the beta, which was updated a few days ago to fix bugs on the Pixel 6, but one helpful change has been discovered: Direct USB Access support on the Pixel 6.
XDA Recognized Developer Freak07 pointed out on Twitter that the kernel in Android 12L QPR3 Beta 1.1 includes support for Direct USB Access. That functionality allows more external USB DACs and 3.5mm headphone dongles to work, and fixes problems with audio apps like Tidal, Neutron, and USB Audio Player Pro.
Assuming Google doesn’t reverse course, this change should mean that the next major Pixel Feature Drop (currently set for July) should improve support for USB audio devices on the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro. Freak07 was also able to backport the change to the kernel found in this month’s stable Android 12L/12.1 update, which does fix problems with Neutron Player and other USB audio applications.
In regards to this change I managed to port this back to stable 12.1.0 march update running with an updated kernel.
— Mile (@mile_freak07) March 25, 2022
If you have a rooted/unlocked Pixel 6, and you want to try the new USB functionality right now without flashing QPR3 Beta 1.1 or waiting a few months, the latest version of Freak07’s Kirisakura-Kernel custom kernel for the Pixel 6 series includes the backported code.
The Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 pro just received Android 12L, the March security patches, Verizon C-Band 5G support, and the March Pixel Feature Drop in a single combined update last week. The other Pixel phones received the same update earlier this month, minus the C-Band 5G support.
Source: Freak07 (Twitter)