PODCAST

Android Bytes (powered by Esper)

Esper.io

Android Bytes (powered by Esper) is the podcast that dives deep into the engineering and business decisions behind the world’s most popular OS. https://www.esper.io Android powers over 3 billion devices worldwide and is the platform of choice for over a thousand companies. You’ll find Android on smartphones, tablets, watches, TV, cars, kiosks, and so much more. How does Google architect Android to run on so many form factors, and how do companies fork AOSP to make it run on even more devices? These are the kinds of questions the Android Bytes podcast considers each week. Join cohosts Mishaal Rahman and David Ruddock, two journalists with extensive knowledge covering the Android OS platform and ecosystem, as they speak to system architects, kernel engineers, app developers, and other distinguished experts in the Android space. Get in touch with us at Esper.io if you’re looking to use Android for your product — we have the experience you need.

Why Android app development is easier (and harder) in 2022
It's the week of Google I/O, the company's big conference focused around development of its consumer platforms, so we thought to take the pulse of one veteran Android app maker on how the state of design and publishing is for newcomers in 2022 and with Android 13 on the way. If you're one of them and are wondering where to start, this show is for you. https://www.reddit.com/user/ljdawson (Laurence Dawson) is the creator of https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.laurencedawson.reddit_sync&hl=en_US&gl=US (Sync for Reddit). 04:21 - Where does a new app developer start? 11:12 - How should you architect your app? 14:16 - What should you beware of when relying on libraries? 19:00 - How should one approach developing a user interface... 26:24 - ...especially when you need to account for tablet and foldable form factors? 30:17 - Any tips on getting the word out about your app? 35:20 - What if you want to port your app outside of the Google Play Store? 38:30 - Will you be able to keep your app updated regularly? (This will be more important going forward) Android Bytes is hosted by Mishaal Rahman, Senior Technical Editor, and David Ruddock, Editor in Chief, of Esper. https://twitter.com/MishaalRahman (Mishaal's Twitter) https://twitter.com/RDRv3 (David's Twitter) For more about Esper, visit us. https://blog.esper.io/ (Esper Blog) https://www.esper.io/ (Official Esper site) https://www.esper.io/book-demo (Book an Esper Demo) Our music is "https://home96.bandcamp.com/track/19 (19)" by https://twitter.com/RNDYGFFE (HOME) and is licensed under https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ (CC BY 3.0).
May 9 2022
45 mins
How to optimize Android for low RAM hardware
This episode features a spirited nerding out over how we've used and developed for devices with minuscule amounts of RAM. From the days of Project Svelte on Android KitKat all the way up to Android Go Edition with Oreo, we go far and wide while trying to patch up any potholes that could crash apps or the operating system itself. Buckle in for a wild ride. We're joined by Nolen Johnson, part of the team at https://www.directdefense.com/ (DirectDefense), and https://twitter.com/deadman_android (Sean Hoyt), LineageOS developer. 01:21 - What's the experience of using a low-RAM Android device? 05:56 - What methods have actors along the parts chain developed to manage memory? 11:47 - What is Project Svelte and how did it help? 16:56 - What tricks did device OEMs use to stretch active memory? 21:56 - What does the Low RAM flag do in Project Svelte? 25:46 - What's Android Go Edition? 33:42 - Are there any other coping mechanisms outside of what Svelte and Go have offered? 38:21 - Will RAM optimizations eventually kill the 32-bit application? Android Bytes is hosted by Mishaal Rahman, Senior Technical Editor, and David Ruddock, Editor in Chief, of Esper. https://twitter.com/MishaalRahman (Mishaal's Twitter) https://twitter.com/RDRv3 (David's Twitter) For more about Esper, visit us. https://blog.esper.io/ (Esper Blog) https://www.esper.io/ (Official Esper site) https://www.esper.io/book-demo (Book an Esper Demo) Our music is "https://home96.bandcamp.com/track/19 (19)" by https://twitter.com/RNDYGFFE (HOME) and is licensed under https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ (CC BY 3.0).
May 3 2022
45 mins
How Wear OS brings Android to your wrist
On this episode, we seek insight on Wear OS, formerly known as Android Wear. As with any other operating system Google has its hands in, there are some unique challenges that developers have had to deal with. Add to that the general malaise the software has experienced over the past several years and you could say that this ship needed to turn around. What does Wear OS 3.0 do to help with that? We're joined by https://twitter.com/Deadman_Android (Sean Hoyt), an Android developer who worked on the https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2106691934/blocks-the-worlds-first-modular-smartwatch (BLOCKS) and https://github.com/OpenWatchProject (Open Watch) smartwatch concepts, and https://www.reddit.com/user/DYNAlogix (Greg Viczian), a Wear OS app developer best known for his https://bubble.dynalogix.eu/ (Bubble Cloud launcher). 01:42 - How did Android Wear get its start? What was using it like? 08:36 - What made it challenging for third-party devs to work on Android Wear/Wear OS? 17:27 - What happens when you try to cram a full version of Android onto a smartwatch? 24:58 - What is the app development experience for Wear OS? 32:30 - What does Wear OS 3.0 bring and what does Samsung have to do with all of it? 41:57 - What does the future hold for the success or failure of Wear OS? Android Bytes is hosted by Mishaal Rahman, Senior Technical Editor, and David Ruddock, Editor in Chief, of Esper. https://twitter.com/MishaalRahman (Mishaal's Twitter) https://twitter.com/RDRv3 (David's Twitter) For more about Esper, visit us. https://blog.esper.io/ (Esper Blog) https://www.esper.io/ (Official Esper site) https://www.esper.io/book-demo (Book an Esper Demo) Our music is "https://home96.bandcamp.com/track/19 (19)" by https://twitter.com/RNDYGFFE (HOME) and is licensed under https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ (CC BY 3.0).
Apr 25 2022
53 mins
How does Esper build on Android with Foundation?
On this episode, David and Mishaal chat with Esper's very own Varun Chitre about Foundation, the Android distribution we provide to our clients for use on their fleets of various machines be it a kiosk or a walkie-talkie. We begin with the basics of why you'd want to deploy a new OS on new hardware — because we all know how enterprise fleets cling to life well past their "use by" dates. 0:35 - What is provisioning and how do you do it efficiently when you have hundreds of devices to set up? 6:03 - What are the key differences in managing provisions with BYOD versus corporate-issued devices? 16:39 - What are the challenges in servicing these devices with infrastructural services from different sources including Google, device makers, and AOSP? 29:49 - What security risks come with a lack of over-the-air software updates? 33:33 - Is it possible to get a robust Android experience loading it onto old Windows machines you might already have? Android Bytes is hosted by Mishaal Rahman, Senior Technical Editor, and David Ruddock, Editor in Chief, of Esper. https://twitter.com/MishaalRahman (Mishaal's Twitter) https://twitter.com/RDRv3 (David's Twitter) For more about Esper, visit us. https://blog.esper.io/ (Esper Blog) https://www.esper.io/ (Official Esper site) https://www.esper.io/book-demo (Book an Esper Demo) Our music is "https://home96.bandcamp.com/track/19 (19)" by https://twitter.com/RNDYGFFE (HOME) and is licensed under https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ (CC BY 3.0).
Apr 18 2022
43 mins
How to make Android (AOSP) without GoogleAndroid Auto deep dive: Wireless, reverse engineering, and more
On this week's episode, we take a good, long look at Android Auto (and a sidelong glance at Android Automotive) including the technical nuts and bolts of how it works and the seemingly immovable burdens that present when Google partners with automakers. We're joined by https://github.com/borconi (Emil Borconi-Szedressy), a co-developer of the nifty https://my.captivate.fm/aawireless.info (AAWireless) dongle to enable wireless Android Auto in otherwise-incompatible vehicles and the creator of the https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=gb.xxy.hr (Headunit Reloaded) app which enables Android Auto in aftermarket head units. 02:27 - How were in-vehicle infotainment systems coming along prior to Android Auto? 08:56 - What are the experiential differences between Android Auto and Android Automotive? 17:30 - What is the essence of Android Auto? How does it work? 31:03 - What happens on the Android device when Auto is turned on? 40:17 - What does the future look like for Android Auto? Android Bytes is hosted by Mishaal Rahman, Senior Technical Editor, and David Ruddock, Editor in Chief, of Esper. https://twitter.com/MishaalRahman (Mishaal's Twitter) https://twitter.com/RDRv3 (David's Twitter) For more about Esper, visit us. https://blog.esper.io/ (Esper Blog) https://www.esper.io/ (Official Esper site) https://www.esper.io/book-demo (Book an Esper Demo) Our music is "https://home96.bandcamp.com/track/19 (19)" by https://twitter.com/RNDYGFFE (HOME) and is licensed under https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ (CC BY 3.0).
Apr 4 2022
50 mins
The secret world of Android SafetyNet
On this week's episode, we get caught up in the whirlwind of one of the many such cat-and-mouse games in Android development between power users and app developers which involves root access, trusted environments, security checks, and Google. What's happened and what's up next in this seemingly never-ending treadmill and what good is there for it to exist? You'd be surprised. We're joined by https://kdrag0n.dev/?utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter (Danny Lin), an independent Android developer, and https://twitter.com/linuxct (Sergio Castell), a mobile security analyst and longtime modder best known as https://linuxct.space/ (linuxct). 02:09 - What is SafetyNet and what does it do? 06:41 - How do modders get around SafetyNet? 11:22 - What advantages does each side of this battle have? 15:33 - What is hardware attestation? What makes it hard to break? Can it be bypassed? 24:50 - What options do developers have in ensuring their apps are operating in safe envrionments? 32:26 - What's the overall outlook as Google begins to replace SafetyNet with its new Play Integrity API? Android Bytes is hosted by Mishaal Rahman, Senior Technical Editor, and David Ruddock, Editor in Chief, of Esper. https://twitter.com/MishaalRahman (Mishaal's Twitter) https://twitter.com/RDRv3 (David's Twitter) For more about Esper, visit us. https://blog.esper.io/ (Esper Blog) https://www.esper.io/ (Official Esper site) https://www.esper.io/book-demo (Book an Esper Demo) Our music is "https://home96.bandcamp.com/track/19 (19)" by https://twitter.com/RNDYGFFE (HOME) and is licensed under https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ (CC BY 3.0).
Mar 28 2022
44 mins
Is it too late for Android on the desktop?
On this week's episode, we pile in on Android's potential convergence play with traditional (and not-so-traditional) desktop and laptop computing. Can this operating system get to a "5-in-1" paradise? We're joined by Juan Carlos Bagnell, longtime commentator (AKA http://somegadgetguy.com/ (SomeGadgetGuy)), and Braden Farmer, creator of the app https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.farmerbb.taskbar&hl=en_US&gl=US (Taskbar). 02:05 - How did the desktop-ification of Android start out? 08:52 - How did Microsoft's attempt with Continuum on Windows Mobile fare? 12:09 - What did Samsung and other OEMs do to pick up the baton? Do they have a sustainable interest in developing desktop continuity? 23:45 - How does a phone communicate with external devices in the context of continuation — both wired and wirelessly? 34:43 - Where do OEMs and consumers get incentives to foster, use, and make viable desktop mode for Android? 43:24 - What are the deep technical aspects that make Taskbar work? 47:34 - Is Android a good candidate for workflows that include freeform windows? Android Bytes is hosted by Mishaal Rahman, Senior Technical Editor, and David Ruddock, Editor in Chief, of Esper. https://twitter.com/MishaalRahman (Mishaal's Twitter) https://twitter.com/RDRv3 (David's Twitter) For more about Esper, visit us. https://blog.esper.io/ (Esper Blog) https://www.esper.io/ (Official Esper site) https://www.esper.io/book-demo (Book an Esper Demo) Our music is "https://home96.bandcamp.com/track/19 (19)" by https://twitter.com/RNDYGFFE (HOME) and is licensed under https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ (CC BY 3.0).
Mar 21 2022
54 mins
Building a more secure OS based on AndroidThe past, present, and future of Android tabletsWill Google’s latest attempt at fixing Android updates work?The hidden world of Android permissions (w/ Ilya and João Dias)Android 13: First look and reactions (w/ João Dias)How Android “listens” to you with ultra low power sensors (w/ Kieron Quinn)The Android launcher is much more powerful than you think (w/ Kevin Barry, Nova Launcher)The Android 13 teaser episodeAndroid on TVs without Android TV (w/ Janko Roettgers and Nolen Johnson)Android Automotive (w/ Al Sutton and Juhani Lehtimäki)