Android 4.4 KitKat and Svelte project

Hexamob | Emma Rossinyol 11/11/2013

Android 4.4 KitKat and the project Svelte

Android 4.4 KitKat has been claimed to run faster than any other version, and it has proved to be able to run smoothly in phones with 512 MB RAM. This Android version incorporates lots of improvements to reduce memory use and introduces new tools and APIs. All this initiatives to optimize Android 4.4 performance are included in what they called the “Project Svelte”.

This project was as an effort to reduce the memory needs of Android OS, with the idea to make it suitable for a much broader range of devices. Google apps, like Chrome and YouTube have also been improved for a better memory management.

These are some of the new features for developers:

  • New ways to create beautiful apps: full-screen immersive mode and a new transition framework.
  • Better functionality: a printing framework and a storage access framework.
  • Low-power sensors: new hardware integrated sensors, like step detector and step counter.
  • New media capabilities: a new screen recorder to capture directly from your Android device.
  • RenderScript in the NDK: a new API in the NDK lets you use RenderScript from your native code.
  • Improved accessibility support: a new system-wide captioning settings to present closed captions in the style’s chosen by the user.

Along with the Android 4.4 KitKat platform, some other interesting updates has been announced, such as the new version of Android NDK(r9b), the update of the Support Package (r19).

Project Svelte is not going to make the old devices compatible with Android 4.4 KitKat, but from now on, any upcoming low-end phones launched with Android 4.4 will be much more memory efficient and they will handle resources better, in part thanks to the new apps becoming more hardware intensive.

Source: Android Developers Blog, AndroidPolice.