kind3rgarten
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:28 am

Re: Android

Fri Oct 21, 2011 3:36 am

Title says it all. Android will run on many ARM development boards like the Beagleboard and the Pandaboard. I am wondering if Android will be supported by the Raspberry Pi team?

obarthelemy
Posts: 1399
Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:53 pm

Re: Android

Fri Oct 21, 2011 3:51 am

Not officially. The will probably be community ports though.
The hardware is a bit iffy for it (256Megs max). True, full-featured, GNU/Linux is probably a much better option, especially if you don't build a fake tablet with it. It's lighter, has more software... Fewer games though.

kind3rgarten
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:28 am

Re: Android

Fri Oct 21, 2011 4:01 am

That is true, the 256MB of ram is really a limit. Although I know they are trying to make the cheapest usable PC possible, I still think they should push out one with higher amount of ram for "enthusiasts." I just wanted to know about Android support because a lot of the basic tasks performed on Linux can be done on Android like Word processing, Internet browsing, and Android also has a couple ups on Linux in my opinion with of the Android market and other markets that are install able on Android, and Netflix support.

On another note, will this have support for Ubuntu by the time it comes out? I ask because I had heard that Ubuntu couldn't commit to supporting this but was puzzled by what this meant. No offense to anyone on the team at all, but wouldn't it be the Raspberry Pi team's job to support Ubuntu more than Ubuntu's commitment to support this device? Also, if it does support Ubuntu is it likely that the Unity interface will be supported?

SlayingDragons
Posts: 67
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 3:17 am

Re: Android

Fri Oct 21, 2011 4:59 am

Quote from kind3rgarten on October 21, 2011, 05:01
That is true, the 256MB of ram is really a limit. Although I know they are trying to make the cheapest usable PC possible, I still think they should push out one with higher amount of ram for "enthusiasts." I just wanted to know about Android support because a lot of the basic tasks performed on Linux can be done on Android like Word processing, Internet browsing, and Android also has a couple ups on Linux in my opinion with of the Android market and other markets that are install able on Android, and Netflix support.

On another note, will this have support for Ubuntu by the time it comes out? I ask because I had heard that Ubuntu couldn't commit to supporting this but was puzzled by what this meant. No offense to anyone on the team at all, but wouldn't it be the Raspberry Pi team's job to support Ubuntu more than Ubuntu's commitment to support this device? Also, if it does support Ubuntu is it likely that the Unity interface will be supported?

Yep, ubuntu will be fully supported by release, with unity and all. And ubuntu not supporting it is refering to the processor architecture. There's a different set of instructions for ARM processors than x86 processors, so software for ARM-based devices must be ported. This means that there has to be someone devoted to maintaining an ARM port of ubuntu, not the raspi changing hardware. Last I checked, ubuntu 11.10 has a port for ARM, so it will be supported on release.

And am I really the only one perfectly fine with 256mb of RAM? That's more than enough to run a WM, a light composite manager, a light browser, audacious, and a word processor at once on linux. You can do a lot with that much memory.

kind3rgarten
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:28 am

Re: Android

Fri Oct 21, 2011 5:40 am

I know about ARM vs x86 but thanks for the information. I was puzzled because Ubuntu already has an ARM port and has had one for awhile. I'm fine with 256MB of ram especially for only $35, I just thought maybe they could create higher spec'd boards for people who want more power. Do you know if there is a limit on the SD card we can put in there? For instance, most phones have a 32GB limit.
I wonder if someone could cram Windows 8 for ARM on this little bugger; I hope Microsoft doesn't set the bar too high.

gsh
Raspberry Pi Engineer & Forum Moderator
Raspberry Pi Engineer & Forum Moderator
Posts: 1421
Joined: Sat Sep 10, 2011 11:43 am

Re: Android

Fri Oct 21, 2011 5:40 am

We should change the first release to have 32Kb with a 64Kb sideways ram option!

That way you can really feel our pain!

G
--
Gordon Hollingworth PhD
Raspberry Pi - Director of Software Engineering

asb
Forum Moderator
Forum Moderator
Posts: 853
Joined: Fri Sep 16, 2011 7:16 pm
Contact: Website

Re: Android

Fri Oct 21, 2011 6:21 am

Quote from SlayingDragons on October 21, 2011, 05:59
On another note, will this have support for Ubuntu by the time it comes out? I ask because I had heard that Ubuntu couldn't commit to supporting this but was puzzled by what this meant. No offense to anyone on the team at all, but wouldn't it be the Raspberry Pi team's job to support Ubuntu more than Ubuntu's commitment to support this device? Also, if it does support Ubuntu is it likely that the Unity interface will be supported?

The issue is Ubuntu are targeting ARMv7+ only and the Raspi has an ARMv6 core (ARM1176). This means you'd need to recompile all Ubuntu packages (or more sensibly, just use Debian).

tufty
Posts: 1456
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2011 2:32 pm

Re: Android

Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:58 am

Quote from kind3rgarten on October 21, 2011, 05:01
That is true, the 256MB of ram is really a limit.
No it's not. Nor is 128MB, for that matter. It may be a limit for what you want to do, but it's not a limit for the goals of the Raspberry Pi.

128MB or 256MB of RAM is all you're gonna get. The PoP hardware for a bigger memory version simply doesn't exist (at any sensible price point). Sure, it might be possible to design an entirely new board that doesn't use PoP RAM, but not on budget, or on time, and it would do nothing to further the goals of the Raspberry Pi.

If you want a board for "enthusiasts", go buy a Beagleboard, or a Pandaboard. Alternatively, get enthusiastic about what you can do with 256MB, and forget about trying to shoehorn Google's ad-pushing platform onto the Pi.

Simon

kind3rgarten
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:28 am

Re: Android

Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:28 am

The issue is Ubuntu are targeting ARMv7+ only and the Raspi has an ARMv6 core (ARM1176). This means you'd need to recompile all Ubuntu packages (or more sensibly, just use Debian).
Thank you for the clarification asb, that's what I was thinking and wondering.

obarthelemy
Posts: 1399
Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:53 pm

Re: Android

Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:37 am

1- Older versions of Ubuntu will be supported. Not newer ones, since Ubuntu dropped support for ARMv6 a while back (9.04 I think is the latest ARMv6 compatible version).
2- FYI, I set up my ARM eCafe to run Torrents, NAS, DLNA, ssh... in less the 50MB under load. That leaves 200MB to run X11 and other apps if you want to, which is plenty.

Andius
Posts: 29
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2011 9:36 pm

Re: Android

Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:49 am

Reading about Icecream sandwhich (new version of Android)over at CyanogenMod Forum I found
For those of you who are going to sit and wonder if your device will make the cut, here are two general requirements that must be satisfied:

1) Phone must have more than 256mb RAM
2) Phone must contain a decent gpu

Now, if your phone doesnt meet those, its not to say you will never get ICS; but it does mean your device will not be one of the first with CM9 (and your wait will likely be much much longer, if ever) (link to it http://goo.gl/eNcjY)

So in theory the RaspberryPi should be able to run it?

tufty
Posts: 1456
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2011 2:32 pm

Re: Android

Fri Oct 21, 2011 9:18 am

Quote from Andius on October 21, 2011, 09:49
So in theory the RaspberryPi should be able to run it?
"must have more than 256mb RAM"

You might be able to squeeze it in, but you're gonna be running "on the edge".

You might also want to consider how well Android performs on more or less equivalent hardware. I have an Android tablet that has 256MB and a 600Mhz OMAP3530 on board. Sure, the processor is "slower" than the Pi's 700Mhz, but Cortex-A8 @ 600Mhz is ~1200DMIPS, 1176 @ 700Mhz is ~900DMIPS, and the A8 has NEON extensions too.

The long and short of it is that the Android tablet sits, lonely and unloved, attached to my stereo, as an MP3 player. Even overclocked to ~800Mhz, It's frick all good as anything else* - it's too damn slow.

Simon

* apart from occasional use as an HP48 calculator.

User avatar
reiuyi
Posts: 165
Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2011 4:59 pm
Contact: Website

Re: Android

Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:31 am

In all honesty Android is a pretty bad linux operating system

To think that we nowadays believe we need more than 1024mb ram and more than 600mhz to pull a menu across a 800×600 screen is sick. Even with those specs, most tablets STILL can't do that at more than 20fps (stuttering). Think back of your old 256mb windows xp computer, did it have any difficulty playing games or opening up web pages? I write very simple programs and I feel ashamed when my programs use more than a couple megabytes of ram when it's just not necessary.

The emphasis shouldn't be on getting more ram into a computer, the emphasis should be on writing proper programs that consume little ram and don't have memory leaks!

na1pir
Posts: 71
Joined: Fri Sep 02, 2011 4:43 pm
Contact: Website

Re: Android

Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:24 pm

I tried to setup a android 2.3 from linaro codebase to imx53 cortex a8 @1ghz with 1gb of ram. And was barely usable as a "desktop" replacement. I think debian with lxde(or only fluxbox) will be optimal solution for R-pi.

Svartalf
Posts: 596
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2011 6:50 pm

Re: Android

Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:51 pm

Quote from kind3rgarten on October 21, 2011, 04:36
Title says it all. Android will run on many ARM development boards like the Beagleboard and the Pandaboard. I am wondering if Android will be supported by the Raspberry Pi team?

Not officially. More specifically, you'll manage 1.5 roughly, but past that (Froyo, Gingerbread, etc.) really require ARMv7 architecture SoC's to work with (i.e. Cortex A8/A9/A15 as opposed to the ARM11 in the R-Pi...).

Svartalf
Posts: 596
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2011 6:50 pm

Re: Android

Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:53 pm

Quote from reiuyi on October 25, 2011, 12:31
In all honesty Android is a pretty bad linux operating system


Heh... That's because it's using a mostly interpreted Java-like application framework as the basis for it's platform.

Svartalf
Posts: 596
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2011 6:50 pm

Re: Android

Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:57 pm

Quote from Andius on October 21, 2011, 09:49
Reading about Icecream sandwhich (new version of Android)over at CyanogenMod Forum I found
For those of you who are going to sit and wonder if your device will make the cut, here are two general requirements that must be satisfied:

1) Phone must have more than 256mb RAM
2) Phone must contain a decent gpu

Now, if your phone doesnt meet those, its not to say you will never get ICS; but it does mean your device will not be one of the first with CM9 (and your wait will likely be much much longer, if ever) (link to it http://goo.gl/eNcjY)

So in theory the RaspberryPi should be able to run it?

Heh... I'll be impressed if they manage to get ICS to run at all, let alone "well" on a device like the model B. CM7 works well enough on my Droid1 handset, which is to say it plays with it better than the final stock Froyo Verizon and Moto saddled the users with- but that's not saying a lot. It still gets VERY non-responsive (sometimes needing a hard-reset by way of battery removal) because it wanders off into the weeds in GC trying to free up resources on Gingerbread.

Simply put...I won't tell you no, I'm just not investing effort into it.... :D

tufty
Posts: 1456
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2011 2:32 pm

Re: Android

Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:37 am

Quote from Svartalf on October 25, 2011, 23:53
Heh... That's because it's using a mostly interpreted Java-like application framework as the basis for it's platform.
There's nothing wrong with using mostly, or even totally, interpreted languages as a basis for a platform. The problems arise, as they have in android, for example, when the framework is bloated and poorly written, and the VM the whole thing is resting on is poorly designed and inefficient.

euxneks
Posts: 26
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 5:55 pm

Re: Android

Wed Oct 26, 2011 5:02 pm

Quote from tufty on October 26, 2011, 10:37
Quote from Svartalf on October 25, 2011, 23:53
Heh... That's because it's using a mostly interpreted Java-like application framework as the basis for it's platform.
There's nothing wrong with using mostly, or even totally, interpreted languages as a basis for a platform. The problems arise, as they have in android, for example, when the framework is bloated and poorly written, and the VM the whole thing is resting on is poorly designed and inefficient.


You'd think that if there was such a solution, a company as large as google would have done it.

asb
Forum Moderator
Forum Moderator
Posts: 853
Joined: Fri Sep 16, 2011 7:16 pm
Contact: Website

Re: Android

Wed Oct 26, 2011 5:06 pm

I'm far from an Android expert, but Dalvik (the VM they wrote) has a JIT in Android 2.2.

tufty
Posts: 1456
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2011 2:32 pm

Re: Android

Thu Oct 27, 2011 7:46 am

Quote from euxneks on October 26, 2011, 18:02
You'd think that if there was such a solution, a company as large as google would have done it.
You would, but they haven't. Sadly, those solutions do exist, and have existed for a long time.

Sure, Android 2.x Dalvik has a JIT (which improves performance by up to 400% over the 1.x series, IIRC), but it's still glacial. 3.x is better, it seems, (fluid, even) although I've only seen it on hosted on machines with dual-core 1Ghz processors - what it would do on a low-performance machine I dread to think.

The problem is that Android, as far as Google is concerned, is good enough for its intended purpose - delivering advertising. For telephony providers, even 1.x is good enough for its intended purpose, which is delivering glitzy looking smartphones at low cost. For google, pushing the performance of Android is driven by "keeping up with the Jones'" (where the Jones' are, largely, Apple), and for the providers, only considered useful for pushing new hardware into the hands of consumers.

As a side note, "openness" doesn't come into it - Google release what they have to, and a bit more for marketing purposes, and the providers don't want to know - openness is anathaema to them.

FWIW, Winphone7/8 looks pretty damn good as a smartphone OS.

There's also the consideration that *none* of the phone/tablet OSs out there at the moment are much cop as OSs for general purpose computing; you're fighting the OS all the way.

All of which, of course, is my own (and somewhat flamebaity) opinion.

Simon

kind3rgarten
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:28 am

Re: Android

Thu Oct 27, 2011 8:53 am

Windows 8 does look very nice especially the integration with e Windows phone applications and possibly Xbox live with games.
Does anyone think that the Raspberry Pi will be able to run Windows 8 when it finally releases?

And also, Tufty, you keep taking shots at Google's marketing, specifically advertisements. The advertisements, since android is open, can be turned off through blocking the servers, you know? You can do this manually or just through an "app" that is easily downloaded from the market. On the advertisements though, I don't care too much because they have to make some sort of profit and I think what they provide(Android) with ads is better than not having it at all. I also don't mind because a lot of the "apps" from the market are free and thus are paid for by advertisement so in turn I actually save money for viewing a few ads here and there.

tufty
Posts: 1456
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2011 2:32 pm

Re: Android

Thu Oct 27, 2011 10:38 am

<rant>

Well, Google, since it stopped being google.stanford.edu, has been a company that's interested in making money. There's nothing wrong with that, and in their core field of aggregating and searching data, I'd argue that they are probably still the best in the field. That's pretty astounding, really - 14 years or so of total market domination purely by being better than everyone else.

How they make money is the issue - they are now an advertising company. Sure, they are more subtle in the way they deliver ads, and they are better at targetting that advertising than most, because they are bloody good at aggregating and analysing data, but they are still an advertising company, not some omnipotent and benign entity showering us with mana at no cost. The mana that Google bestows on us has one goal - delivering more advertising to more people in order to deliver more money to Google - and has a cost.

Android is a gift from google to the telephony companies, *not* to users. Why are Google gifting the telephony companies with Android? Because it gets more Google based advertising to the masses - more ads delivered == more money. Because, apart from the initial device driver work, it's cost free to them, which means they can hit the market with smartphones at more or less the same cost as "dumb" phones.

So Google are piggybacking on the work of the Linux kernel developers to make money with a partially closed source operating system (which, again, is fine in my book, but then I wasn't anti-Tivo either). What I don't like is their claim that it's somehow "open". It's an enormous piece of marketing blather covering the fact that the user is paying over the odds for something that, by default, rams advertising down their throats. I don't believe ad-blockers last long on the Android Market (fair enough as well - their gaff, their revenue stream, their rules), but I may be wrong on that.

Ad-supported apps are the norm because it's pretty much impossible to even make it complicated to "pirate" Android apps, let alone make it hard. And, of course,

There's also the issue of collateral damage to the GPL via the unscrupulous chinese manufacturers are using Android but refuse to release the GPL code they've modified, but that's hardly Google's fault (although if they actually cared, they might do some policing)

And it all stems from one thing : advertising. I don't like it in my letterbox, and I don't like it on my computer. So yeah, it's personal, although I'm not the only one thinking this way : http://tightwind.net/2011/01/a.....-platform/

And yes, I am aware of the irony that I'm posting this from Chrome, that my primary email address is gmail, and my blog is (now) hosted by Google and has Google ads on it.

Simon

As another aside, I don't buy into the "Don't be evil" thing, either. "Don't be caught doing twattish things like MS did", maybe, and even then...

Josh
Posts: 114
Joined: Mon Sep 12, 2011 8:08 pm
Contact: Website

Re: Android

Thu Oct 27, 2011 2:42 pm

Android is a clunky piece of junk now... I wouldn't want it anywhere near my R-Pi.
Windows 7 Phone is the best in my eyes now (I cannot believe I just said that...) and webOS is pretty sweet too!

jewesque
Posts: 36
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2011 6:01 pm
Contact: Website

Re: Android

Thu Oct 27, 2011 5:38 pm

FYI, (I'm using buzzwords that I only peripherally understand, so bare with me), but the reason that we're currently limited to 128/256 is because the SoC being used in the POP configuration is realistically limited to 256MB right now. When larger cheap POP RAM modules become available, in future revisions, the R-Pi will probably see them then. That said, there's no time table AFAIK.

Return to “Other projects”