Android™ 9 Pie -

14 Dec 2018

Android™ 9 Pie

Have some Pie … Android 9 Pie is now released and supported for several of Intrinsyc’s Open-QTM​​ development kits equipped with Qualcomm Snapdragon SoC’s!

Google’s Android 9 release, brings some much-awaited features to the Android​​ platform and is now available for use on development platforms from Intrinsyc Technologies. ​​ Our latest Android 9 BSPs for various platforms, including the Open-QTM​​ 820, can be downloaded by our clients from​​ https://support.intrinsyc.com/, along with release notes, programming instructions, and buildable software update packages.

Google’s Android 9 uses machine learning to optimize features such as battery management. It also has significant improvement in brightness management, multi-camera support, external camera support, multiple Bluetooth connections and many user features.​​ 

  • Adaptive Battery uses machine learning for adaptive battery management to learn & predict which apps you will/won’t likely use and spends power on used apps.​​ 

  • Adaptive brightness learns from how you set your screen brightness in different lightning environment and set brightness automatically in future.

  • Multiple Bluetooth connections - Android 9 supports simultaneous connection to multiple devices, and usage of different Bluetooth profiles such as file transfer profile and Headset profile at the same time. For example, a device running Android 9 can connect to a PC/Laptop for file transfer, and in parallel be connected to a headset and playing audio. Also, it can remain connected to different devices​​ and switch between them for the same functionality (e.g.: connect to more than one headset and play back the audio stream to any one of them based on selection). Note: The same profile is not​​ supported on multiple devices simultaneously.

  • External camera support: Android 9 supports external USB/UVC camera.

  • Multi-camera support: Android 9 provides APIs for Camera applications to use streams from two or more physical cameras. This will be useful​​ for features such as Bokeh, seamless zoom, stereo vision and more.

Apart from these, there are also improvements in user features in Android 9 that you can read about​​ here. Additional details of interest to developers are available​​ here.

Google’s Android 9 release also provides architectural changes:

  • Security: Android 9 limits the ability of background running apps​​ to access user input, sensor data, microphone and camera.

  • Verified Boot 2.0 evolution, and VBMeta partition: Verified boot is the process of assuring the end user of the integrity of software running on device. It establishes a full chain of trust (by authenticating each partition using signed keys) between each partition while boot up. Android 8 and higher versions use Android verified boot (AVB) which works equally with non-A/B and A/B partitions. From Android 8.0 onwards it allows independent signing of​​ each partition with its own private key by the partition owner (Google for system partition, OEM for vendor partition) for AVB. In AVB process, the public key for each partition is given to the OEM and saved in the vbmeta partition. vbmeta partition is signed by the OEM using OEM private key.​​ 

  • VBMeta partition: The central data structure used in AVB is VBMeta structure. It contains a number of descriptors (and other metadata) and all of this data is cryptographically signed. Descriptors are used for images​​ hashes, image hashtree metadata and chained partitions. VBMeta partition holds the hash for the boot partition in a hash descriptor and hashtree metadata for system and vendor partition and followed by userdata partition. The bootloader can check the VBMeta signature in vbmeta partition and verify it was made by the owner and thereby trust the hashes for boot, vendor and system partition.

Please refer to the relevant Open-Q software release notes for the currently supported features on your platform.

Enjoy​​ your Pie!

 

 

References:

[1]:​​ https://www.android.com/versions/pie-9-0/

[2]:​​ https://source.android.com/devices/architecture

[3]:​​ https://developer.android.com/about/versions/pie/

[4]:​​ https://android.googlesource.com/platform/external/avb/+/master/README.md


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