Android has lots of buzz, especially when it comes to smart phones. But it also will be showing up in embedded applications as the range of support expands. One of the leaders is Mentor Graphics. Its recent acquisition of Embedded Alley, a major Android supporter, was highlighted at this year’s DAC 2009 show.
Mentor Graphics is looking to support smart-phone developers as well as anyone else interested in utilizing Android in an embedded application. Android is likely to find its way into everything from microwaves to automotive entertainment and navigation systems. It provides a standard interface and connectivity as well as an application platform.
One advantage Mentor Graphics brings to the table is its Nucleus real-time operating system (RTOS) and virtual-machine support. Blending Linux and Nucleus is natural, with Nucleus handling the communications hardware and Linux providing the Android framework. Virtual-machine support puts everything on a multicore chip.
ARM and MIPS were on hand, spotlighting Mentor Graphics’ range of hardware platform support. Many of the ARM licensees will support Mentor Graphics, including Freescale, Texas Instruments, Marvell, and RMI. This includes Embedded Alley’s Dalvik Virtual Machine and JNI (Java Native Interface), the Android Application Framework and SDK (Eclipse Plug-in), and the Android Device Emulator for Eclipse.