Open source Android Wear alternative AsteroidOS released

After more than three years of development, AsteroidOS has finally reached the version 1.0 milestone. This open source smartwatch OS is designed to offer Android Wear owners an alternative, especially for older watch models that have stopped receiving Wear OS updates.

The first stable release of AsteroidOS includes what its creators call 'all the features needed for a modern wearable experience'. That includes core watch apps like alarms, timers and weather, plus...

By William Judd, 17 May 2018, 1 comment. Categories: Android, API, Ecosystem, Mobile, Wearables.

Android Studio gets Chrome OS emulation

Last week, we covered the exciting news that Google had added Linux app support to Chrome OS, allowing apps like Android Studio to run on Chromebooks. Now we're looking at things from another angle, as Google have added a Chrome OS emulator to Android Studio.

That means developers can now test how Android apps will run on Chrome OS, without needing to have physical access to a Chromebook themselves. 

Given the...

By William Judd, 14 May 2018, 1 comment. Categories: Android, Development Tools, Industry, Testing.

Apple removes location leaking apps ahead of GDPR deadline

This week Apple has started outright removing iOS apps that don't comply with their location privacy standards. After tacitly permitting these apps for months, Apple has begun delisting leaky iOS apps and sending emails to app developers who have fallen afoul of the rules.

The move comes just two weeks before the EU-wide General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into force, although it's not clear whether Apple is moving in response to the new rules or merely tackling a new category of...

By William Judd, 11 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Apple, App Stores, Hacking, Mobile.

Vulkan 1.1 on Android P brings VR improvements and more

In March, the first major update to the Vulkan cross-platform GPU API was released, and as of this week, Google have confirmed version 1.1 will be supported by Android P. Here's what you need to know about Vulkan 1.1 for Android development.

First of all, there are several features here are big news for the update as a whole, but aren't likely to be relevant to Android P devices. Multiple GPU support is perhaps the headline feature in this category, as it requires two or more discrete graphics cards...

By William Judd, 11 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Android, API, Development Tools, Gaming, VR.

Google's 4K Android TV dongle available to devs now

While Google's Android OS has become a giant in the smartphone industry, it's failed to catch on in other form factors. Android TV is one case in point; announced in 2014, the OS for TVs and set top boxes has remained a bit player in the Android ecosystem. This year, Google is trying to get more app makers to target the platform with a particularly juicy hook: an Android TV dongle running Android P, offered exclusively to developers.

This 4K-capable Android TV device was

By William Judd, 09 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Development Tools, Devices.

Linux app support coming to Chrome OS

Google's I/O developer conference kicked off yesterday, bringing with it a raft of announcements of interest to programmers and users alike. While demonstrations like Google Assistant's natural call to a hair salon took centre stage, Google also slipped in a big scoop for developers: Linux app support will soon be added to Chrome OS.

Historically, developers interested in working on Chromebook hardware such as Google's line of Pixelbooks have had to boot Linux on their devices or use tools like...

By William Judd, 09 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Development Tools, Devices, Industry, Platforms.

F8 2018: Roundup of Facebook’s developer conference

The first day of Facebook’s annual F8 developer conference has concluded and we’ve rounded up all the most notable announcements from the gathering in San Jose, California.

This year’s show is the first since the world’s largest social network came under fire for allowing Cambridge Analytica and other companies unprecedented access to user data, which may have been used to influence democratic decisions.

In the wake of the fallout, Facebook made changes to its platform to better...

By Ryan Daws, 02 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Android, API, Development Tools, Facebook, Platforms.

Binary scans find vulnerabilities in one in five Android apps

Research conducted by binary-level security and compliance testing company Insignary has found vulnerabilities in one in five Android apps.

Insignary tested 700 of the most popular Android apps on the Google Play Store for the research. Their Clarity system was put to work for the first time analysing APKs for known open source vulnerabilities.

Here are some of the key findings:

  • The binary scans indicate that the Android apps available on Google Play Store by the top software vendors contain versions of open source components with security vulnerabilities. Out of the 700 APK files scanned, 136 contain security vulnerabilities.

  • 57% of the...

By Ryan Daws, 24 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Platforms, Security.

Android Things Developer Preview 8 brings final APIs

The latest Developer Preview of Google's IoT platform Android Things has launched, bringing with it what represents the final API surface before the stable version.

During the preview releases of Android Things, Google committed to providing updates every 6-8 weeks – a schedule the company has kept fairly rigidly to.

This latest release does not bring major new features as some of the platform’s prior releases. Instead, it tunes up the existing to ensure it's ready for general release and...

By Ryan Daws, 18 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Android, API, IoT, Platforms.