Android 11 changes to Bloom Reader

In reading the release notes on Google Play for the latest version of Bloom Reader, I see that changes to Android in version 11 required changes to Bloom Reader. It isn’t clear to me whether the Bloom Reader interface has different options for Android 11 vs. 10 and below or what. Since we are going to be orienting some people to various things related to Bloom Reader, it would be helpful to know more about the interface commands and how they may work differently now.

We didn’t want BR to behave differently on different versions of Android, though we made a couple of exceptions where we could take advantage of old permissions when upgrading to make things smoother. So the changes described in the release notes apply to all versions of Android where the new BR is installed.

“Find Books on this Device” is no longer available.

There is a new “Open BoomPUB file” command which lets you choose a single file to open.

There’s also a new command “Receive books from USB” which is really just there to allow BR to request access to the folder where Bloom Editor puts books sent using USB.

A more subtle change is that the BloomExternal folder, which some people were using to distribute books on SD cards, doesn’t work as well as it used to. It is slower to use in Android 11 and, again, BR must ask user permission to access it. There is therefore a new preferred location to put files being distributed this way. (To get access to it, you must mount the SD card directly on some other computer. Then put the books in Android\data\org.sil.bloom.reader\files\Books. Note that you won’t see this folder in Explorer apps on the device; Android considers it a private folder for BloomReader. Case matters in Android file systems, so get that name exactly right. Unfortunately different paths must be used for beta and alpha versions of BR.)