Cross-platform development: Capacitor 5 is compatible with Android 13

Ionic has released the fifth major version of its Runtime Capacitor. The open-source runtime for building web-native apps adapts to changes in the Google Play Store and App Store in the new release, including increasing the target platform to Android 13 and using Xcode 14.1.

With Capacitor, applications for iOS and Android as well as progressive web apps can be developed with JavaScript, HTML and CSS. Capacitor provides a direct connection between JavaScript and commonly used native APIs through official plugins. In addition, community plug-ins offer additional functions. Although Ionic recommends using Capacitor with the Ionic Framework, it can also be used independently.

For the release of the beta version, Ionic announced the innovations in version 5.0. From August 2023, the Google Play Store will require Android 13 (API Level 33) or higher, which will result in new permission changes. Unlike apps built with Capacitor 4 which would need further work on the native layer, Capacitor 5 can handle it.

There are also innovations in Apple’s App Store: Since April 2023, all iOS and iPadOS apps submitted there must be created with Xcode 14.1 and the iOS 16.1 SDK. Therefore, Capacitor 5 sets the minimum Xcode version to 14.1.

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Excerpt from the program:

To be consistent with the modern iOS design system, Capacitor 5 changes the default animation for the status bar slide to fade. In addition, API innovations should make it easier to create Swift plugins in the future.

For Android, the development team has, among other things, fixed a bug: So far, the auto-completion did not work as intended before developers made the androidScheme-Changed configuration. To fix this, the configuration object now first looks for a provided one androidScheme and defaults to if none is found https.

The connection to Google Maps has been available since last year thanks to a plug-in. Now Capacitor can also use the Polylines, Polygons and Circles APIs in Google Maps, which looks like this:

The Google Maps plugin for Capacitor offers new features.

The Google Maps plugin for Capacitor offers new features.

The Google Maps plugin for Capacitor offers new features.

(Image: Ionic)

Another change regarding app creation for Android affects newer Huawei devices. After the manufacturer’s ban from the US market, newer Huawei smartphones cannot use pre-installed Google services. As a result, they do not use Google’s WebView, but their own, which is why Capacitor was previously unable to handle them – which has now been fixed.

For example, as the development team explains, Capacitor 5 can be upgraded to version 5 using the Ionic extension for Visual Studio Code. For community plugins, Ionic provides an upgrade tool designed to automatically upgrade them to Capacitor 5. To do this, run the following command in the plug-in root directory:

npx @capacitor/[email protected]

All further details can be found in the blog entry for the announcement and the previous beta release.


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