Androids are great for widescreen movies

Ever wondered why Android phones are long and narrow, while iPhones are more square. Well it has to do with screen ratios, and perhaps what Google and Apple think users would be using their phone for.

The iPhone resolution is 960×640. This gives a ratio of 3:2, and is close to an A4 paper page. Where as the Google nexus prime has a ratio of 1280×720. This a ratio of 16:9, and this is shape that modern TVs use when they describe themselves as HDTV. So there is a lot of content available in this format, TV programs, TV series and some movies.

Of course not all Android phones have a 16:9 widescreen format, but the latest Android phones do seem to be sticking to this form factor.

Continue reading Androids are great for widescreen movies

Fragmentation does not mean the death of Android

A recent report stated that fragmentation on the Android has caused a drop in the number of developers interested in developing for the Android. Fragmentation means something different for each person. It could be the SDK version, or the screen size, or the processor speed of the phone, although the last one should not pose a problem for any half decent developer.

Sure, there is no denying that to program for a single screen size and resolution makes the developers life a lot easier. A bitmap is easier to handle than a vector, absolute numbers easier to understand than relatives, and you know who big the text will look on your customers devices, because their device will be the same size as the device you are developing on. Also, the OS user experience is smoother because the OS does not have to cater for a variety of different phone attributes.

So that’s basically the pro’s of a one size fits all approach.

Continue reading Fragmentation does not mean the death of Android

Google needs to rethink permissions, a proposed solution

There has been a number of reports of trojans and malware embedded in what seem to be legitimate android applications. Applications such as the one described in this link, will appear to do the task that it was installed for, while performing another more sinister task.

While such malware is common on unofficial android app stores, they can also be found on the official Google Play app store. So what can you do to stop such malware from infecting your phone.

Continue reading Google needs to rethink permissions, a proposed solution

Setup Android development with Linux

My Android development environment is on Linux (Specifically Kubuntu 10.04 LTS). Kubuntu is a derivative of Ubuntu, using KDE as it’s desktop rather than Unity.

Here are some of the reasons I prefer Linux

  • KDE is a nice environment to work in. Dolphin the file manager is feature rich, and I cannot live without virtual windows.
  • Do not have to worry about virus or virus checking. I do run a virus check now and then (using clam AV), but have not installed a virus checker that slows down the whole OS.
  • Very stable and efficient with memory. Swap usage is 0 for most sessions, though having 6 Gb of RAM does help.

Below is a setup guide, though I would recommend using the links provided for more detail. This guide will not teach you Linux, nor Java, but does provide setup knowledge to get you up and running for Android development.

Continue reading Setup Android development with Linux