Android container for Linux devices

How Android apps can work in a Linux environment

NOVI SAD, Serbia, September 8, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — RT-RK, a leading in-vehicle software development company specializing in digital TV, Android TV and infotainment systems, today announced its new virtualization concept enabling Android applications to run on Linux.

One of the biggest advantages of Android is its ecosystem for application development (frameworks, tools, etc.), not only in mobile, but in all its verticals (mobile, TV, cars). Billions of devices today run on Android, with all its variants – either supported by Google services or AOSP to create an independent ecosystem. Widely accepted as an operating system for mobile devices, Android has grown in popularity, producing a wide variety of applications. The abundance of wildly popular Android apps is a huge incentive for Linux OS-based devices to support some of these apps.

At RT-RK, they are aware of the huge investments made in the development of Linux-based devices – set-top boxes, TV receivers, infotainment units, etc. It is also understood that it would be risky and expensive to abruptly switch from Linux to Android. , letting go of its UI/UX, its ecosystem, jeopardizes stability, which has its place in particular in the automotive world guided by strict security requirements.

To bridge the gap, they at RT-RK have developed a set of libraries and software that produces a Linux runtime environment for Android apps. The concept is based on containerization, an approach similar to enabling Android apps on Chrome OS, which has been successfully implemented and tested. Containerization has several advantages over the hypervisor approach that is currently widely used to support both Linux and Android:

  1. Android UI is invisible (no impact on OEM brand identity)
  2. Dynamic memory allocation (potential BOM optimization)
  3. Excludes hypervisor license fees (potential savings)

“At the moment, we are focusing on upgrading the graphics subsystem integration as well as other performance optimizations. So far, we have successfully integrated different groups of applications such as as streaming apps (including Netflix), games, maps/navigation, voice assistants (e.g. Alexa) as well as multi-display and multi-channel audio capabilities,” said Krsto LazicBusiness Development Manager at RT-RK.

The container concept will be presented at IBC 2022.

About RT-RK

RT-RK is a high-end embedded software development company in the Southeast Europe, with a focus on consumer electronics and infotainment systems. The company was founded in 1991 and currently employs over 500 engineers. RT-RK has a track record of being a near-shore development center for silicon vendors, networking, automotive, and consumer electronics companies. RT-RK operates under the umbrella of the TTTech Group.

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