The Linux Plumbers Conference is this week, and since Android is one of the biggest distributors of the Linux kernel in the world, Google software engineer Todd Kjos stopped by for a progress report from the Android team. Android 12—which will be out any day now—promises to bring Android closer than ever to mainline Linux by shipping Google’s “Generic Kernel Image” (GKI) to end-users.
This is a big issue, and I’m glad Google and the Android team are addressing it. Hopefully, we will eventually end up in a situation where the Android kernel and the mainline Linux kernel are far, far closer to each other than they are now.
Call me cynical, but couldn’t this be a sign that Google is planning (long term, of course, but still) to invest less in Linux as it builds its own Fuschia OS ? Wouldn’t closing the gap between vendor kernels and upstream mean they can rely more on both and less on themselves ? Not that I mind, since its done in the open, but trying to read through the communication, I was wondering this (and am not knowledgeable enough to call this an opinion).
They’ve spent many years on this and I hope it finally happens. To get some idea where they were in 2018 in numbers and size:
” There are now only about 30 patches in the Android Common Kernel, adding about 6,500 lines of code, that are needed to boot Android. The eventual plan is to push that to zero”