Remember last week, when we talked about the rumours that Research In Motion might bring Android application compatibility to its new QNX-based mobile operating system? Well, while the following news seems to have nothing to do with RIM, it does show it’s possible to bring Android application compatibility to other platforms. Myriad has announced Alien Dalvik, which allows Android applications to run on other platforms at comparable speed.
Alien Dalvik comes from Myriad, an unknown name perhaps, but they’re no small player. Alien Dalvik allows Android applications to run on different platforms at comparable speed. It seems developers only need to repackaging Android package files (.apk), but for users, the process is entirely transparent, and will function exactly like a native application.
“From a user perspective, Alien Dalvik is completely transparent. Alien Dalvik applications appear as native and can be seamlessly installed on device without user disruption,” the press release reads, “All the user sees is that he now has access to a wider range of applications, thus encouraging a higher frequency of downloads and increased ARPU.”
The video is indeed pretty impressive.
Alien Dalvik will be released commercially later this year, and will initially run on MeeGo, with other platforms in the pipeline. Myriad will unveil more information during Mobile World Congress next week, so hopefully we’ll maybe get to try it out ourselves. Let’s hope it becomes available as open source as well, so that it can be hacked onto other platforms and devices as soon as possible. I’d love to play around with Android applications on my Windows Phone 7 HD7.
Well I was one of those people who was skeptical that merely running a version of Dalvik would be sufficient to allow all android apps to run seamlessly. But this seems to prove me wrong. The animations and transitions were not as good with the alien dalvik version, but it is very impressive overall. This could be a game changer not just for competitors who want a piece of the android pie without actually running android, but for google too. The fact that more phone can run android apps makes it an even more attractive platform for developers.
It seems like win all around, except for Oracle who probably would certainly object to this version of dalvik as well. The legal uncertainty might keep other phone manufacturers away for now.
Would be interesting to see Apple “Think Different” about this one and allow it on iOS… Apple would have the upside of having the only hardware that ran apps from both of the major development frameworks. The opposite, running iOS apps on android devices, is probably next to impossible (or close enough that no one would ever seriously try).
I realize there is no way in hell this would ever happen, just saying I think they will be pissing away a competitive advantage for no good reason other than corporate arrogance.
Android is slowly winning developer mindshare even with Apple’s lock-in on the appstore – the release of the iPhone on Verizon will probably slow down Android’s growth a bit, but I don’t think it will stop it. Their appstore lock-in gambit will certainly work for a few more years, but it will be their platform’s eventual undoing.