Intel will ship a fully native x86 version of Android 2.2 ‘Froyo’ to developers in the next two months to spur growth of Atom-powered Android netbooks and slates.
The highly-anticipated Android 2.2 ‘Froyo’ release looks set to mark another stage in the evolution of Google’s mobile OS with the move onto PC-standard x86 architecture.
Android was originally written for the ARM processors which power most smartphones, along with the new class of slates and 3G ‘smartbooks’.
But Intel has been adapting Android’s open source code to run as a native x86 operating system so that its army of hardware partners can use Atom processors for Android tablets, netbooks and, at some stage in the future, smartphones.
“Our expectation is that (native x86 Android) will be based on the Froyo release and will be available this summer to developers” Renee James, Intel’s senior veep for software and services, told APC.
James says the process of ‘Atomising’ Android “wasn’t tremendously difficult, as we have a lot experience in Linux”.
In addition “all of the (x86) code will be fed back into the open branch that will be created for x86” and will fully accessible to the Android developer community.