Open Handset Alliance Releases Android SDK

The Open Handset Alliance released its software development kit on Monday, giving developers an early look at the user interface behind the so-called "GPhone."

"Android" is built on the Linux 2.6 kernel, and is built to take advantage of the mobile internet. The OHA also said it wanted to make development for it easy by providing components that are extendable, replaceable, and reusable.

The OS uses the Dalvik virtual machine in order to run each application. Dalvik is optimized for low memory usage, which means that applications could run better and be more secure according to technical documents on the OS.

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Google is also offering an additional bonus for those who develop for the Android OS: a contest which will award up to $10 million for developers who build applications for the platform.

"With so many brilliant minds striving to design engaging, innovative applications, mobile users around the world can expect phones equipped with dynamic and unprecedented applications very soon," Google engineering director Steve Horowitz said.

The entire platform will be made available under a Apache v2 open-source license next year, the OHA said.

Those interested in downloading the SDK can visit the OHA website. Requirements are an XP or Vista computer, Mac OS X10.4.8 or later, or Linux Ubuntu Dapper Drake or later.

Other Linux distributions may work, however OHA says it will not directly support them.

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