After some 17 months of testing in various shapes and forms, Android Things has finally been released. The 1.0 version of Android for IoT (Internet of Things) devices, brings all the benefits of Android but in a streamlined, power friendly package. Developers of Android should find Android Things familiar straight away.
The beauty of Things is that you have access to all the APIs, development tools and resources that are already used in Android development and can use them to develop hardware solutions on certified Android Things hardware for use in IoT projects.
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Google has quietly released Developer Preview 4.1 of Android Things, the Android-based Internet-of-Things (IoT) platform, to developers. The update primarily focuses on adding new hardware that is supported to the platform as well as addressing bug fixes and performance improvements.
On the new hardware front, the new Pico i.MX6UL revision B board is now supported. That board supports external peripherals from the likes of Adafruit and Pimoroni which dev’s can use to build their IoT solutions. The release notes point out that the beta version of this board is not supported.
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Google’s Internet of Things (IoT) version of Android, Android Things, has been updated to Developer Preview 3. The platform, built on Android but in a much more stripped down version to work with smaller memory and hardware footprints, has been in Preview mode for well over a year now with the latest update bringing some much needed features for the platform. The idea behind Things is that, if you are a developer on Android today, you can develop on Android Things and create IoT devices. In other words, you don’t have to learn another coding language.
Perhaps the biggest new feature is support for Android Bluetooth APIs. Developers can now write to these APIs, both the Bluetooth classic and Bluetooth LE stacks, just as they can in full Android. Bluetooth is expected to be a critical part of the development of IoT so having this support on board is great to see for developers.
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With the ever increasing number of Internet of Things (IoT) devices, the need for a proper programming platform is becoming ever important. Google today announced Android Things, a platform that should provide a solid foundation for those who are developing IoT solutions as well as improvements to Google Weave. Android Things, as the name implies, is based on Android so those who are already developing on the platform can quickly and easily pick up the coding skills for IoT.
Now any Android developer can quickly build a smart device using Android APIs and Google services, while staying highly secure with updates direct from Google. We incorporated the feedback from Project Brillo to include familiar tools such as Android Studio, the Android Software Development Kit (SDK), Google Play Services, and Google Cloud Platform. And in the coming months, we will provide Developer Preview updates to bring you the infrastructure for securely pushing regular OS patches, security fixes, and your own updates, as well as built-in Weave connectivity and more.
This should lower the bar for many developers to get into the IoT development game as they don’t have to learn a new code structure. If you know Android, you inherently know Android Things.
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