Google simplifies trawling through Android Open Source Project code

Google simplifies trawling through Android Open Source Project code Ryan is a senior editor at TechForge Media with over a decade of experience covering the latest technology and interviewing leading industry figures. He can often be sighted at tech conferences with a strong coffee in one hand and a laptop in the other. If it's geeky, he’s probably into it. Find him on Twitter (@Gadget_Ry) or Mastodon (

Google is making it easier for developers to sift through the open source code at the foundation of every Android device.

While third-party tools for analysing the Android Open Source Project code have been available for some time, an official method has been lacking.

Google is now rectifying this oversight by breaking down complex projects like Android and Chromium into smaller individual Git repos. For some perspective, Android alone has over 1,500 different repositories.

People seeking to analyse Chromium have been better served. Chromium Code Search, as the name suggests, helps people outside of Google to sift through the project's many repos as if it was one giant repository.

Google is now bringing the same functionality as Chromium Code Search to the Android code.

Android Code Search allows developers, or anyone with an interest in how the world's most popular OS works under-the-hood, to quickly find relevant parts of the OS without the need for a third-party tool like AndroidXRef.

Furthermore, if anyone doesn't understand the code they're looking at, Google is providing "cross reference" functionality to some parts of the code bring up more information. Google promises to expand the supported bits of code over time.

Here's the official list of features being launched today:

  • View the source code

  • Navigate cross-references across the entire code base that allow you to click through one part of the source code to another

  • Switch between Android’s open source branches (not all branches will have cross-reference information)

  • View tool documentation on

You can find the new Android Code Search tool here.

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