Mojang has announced a new beta version, named The Friendly Update, of Minecraft Pocket Edition. Version 0.15 adds pistons, pig riding, fire charges, husk zombies, and Xbox Live achievements on Android, among a range of other additions, tweaks, and bug fixes.

WHAT'S NEW

  • Mysterious, as-yet-unspecified friendliness
  • Pistons and sticky pistons!
  • Observer blocks: new blocks that can detect changes in neighboring blocks
  • Xbox Live Achievements on iOS and Android
  • Online multiplayer with Xbox Live friends!
  • Leads, horses and dyeable horse armor!
  • Fire charges
  • Pig riding!
  • A whole new UI for the main menu, shared with the Windows 10 Edition
  • You can now tip arrows using a cauldron and potions!
  • Husk zombies in the desert
  • Stray skeletons in tundras
  • Different villages in taigas and savannahs
  • Skeleton horse traps!

Xbox Live multiplayer is also a new feature, meaning cross-platform play should work, although I was unable to test this. There's a new UI for the main menu - much, much better than the previous iteration, at least on Android, and lots of new additions in the game itself. Mojang are touting the pistons and sticky pistons feature here, producing a video that shows what you can do if you're really addicted good at Minecraft. Arrows can now be dipped in a cauldron, as well as small but significant additions, such as leads, horses, and dyeable horses armour. The Pocket Edition is definitely getting more and more like the 'full' edition of Minecraft, which is great to see.

The beta is live on the Play Store now, provided you're a tester. If you're not in the beta program, sign up here. So far, I haven't been able to identify what the 'mysterious, as-yet-unspecified friendliness' is - if you find out, let us know in the comments.

Minecraft: Pocket Edition
Minecraft: Pocket Edition
Developer: Mojang
Price: $6.99+