When Google announced the Android 12 Beta back in May, one tiny change slipped in under the radar and didn't actually show up until today. As part of the privacy-centric changes in Android 12, Google said it would roll out a new "Android Private Compute Core," in charge of on-device AI features like Live Caption, Now Playing, and Smart Reply. Well, the feature is now "live" in Android 12 Beta 5, but it's basically just a rebranding of the existing Device Personalization Services — though it might mean more later.


Left: Android 11. Right: Android 12. 

The new setting lives in Settings -> Privacy -> Private Compute Core and by all appearance and its bundled options, takes over for the old Device Personalization services, showing the same content as the prior option did, including options to clear recorded data that on-device AI features like Smart Reply rely on, and a toggle to disable smart suggestions in the keyboard suggestion strip.

We actually reached out to Google for more information given both the drastic name change and the fact that nothing else that's user-facing seems to have been adjusted. We're told the company will have more to say about the Private Compute Core tomorrow, implying that there could be more to it than a simple branding change going forward, even if it's just that for now. One change that is clear based on the prior announcement is that the features governed by the Private Compute Core are open source and auditable by the security community.

For more Android 12 Beta 5 news, keep an eye out on our feature series coverage here, and stay tuned in.