Google officially announced DNS-over-HTTP/3 (DoH3) support for Android devices on Tuesday as part of a Google Play system update designed to keep DNS queries private.
To this end, Android smartphones running Android 11 and later should use DoH3 instead of DNS-over-TLS (Point), which was integrated into the mobile operating system with Android 9.0.
DoH3 is also an alternative to DNS over HTTPS (DoH), a mechanism to perform Domain Name System (DNS) resolution remotely over an encrypted connection, effectively preventing third parties from spying on users’ browsing activities.
HTTP/3the first major Hypertext Transfer Protocol upgrade since the introduction of HTTP/2 in May 2015, is designed to use a new transport layer protocol called FAST which is already supported by major browsers such as Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox and Apple Safari.
The low-latency protocol, developed by Google in 2012, relies on User Datagram Protocol (UDP) rather than Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) to render HTTP traffic safer and more efficientwithout forgetting to reduce the time required to establish connections between two terminals.
“Although using HTTPS alone does not significantly reduce overhead, HTTP/3 uses QUIC, a transport that efficiently multiplexes multiple streams over UDP using a single TLS session with session resumption,” Matthew Maurer and Mike Yu from the android team said in a post.
DoH3 has the added benefit of maintaining stable connections even when mobile devices frequently switch networks (eg, from Wi-Fi to LTE). “With DoT, these events require a full renegotiation of the connection. In contrast, the QUIC transport on which HTTP/3 is based can resume a suspended connection in a single RTT,” Google noted.
Another improvement to consider is the implementation of the DNS resolver in Rust to reduce the risk of security vulnerabilities and enable memory safety guarantees. It’s worth pointing out that Google added Rust support to Android in April 2021.
“With the introduction of Rust, we are able to improve both security and performance,” Maurer and Yu said. “Similarly, QUIC allows us to simultaneously improve network performance and privacy. “