Android 2.3 Compatibility Definition

Copyright © 2010, Google Inc. All rights reserved.
compatibility@android.com

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. Resources
3. Software
3.1. Managed API Compatibility
3.2. Soft API Compatibility
3.2.1. Permissions
3.2.2. Build Parameters
3.2.3. Intent Compatibility
3.2.3.1. Core Application Intents
3.2.3.2. Intent Overrides
3.2.3.3. Intent Namespaces
3.2.3.4. Broadcast Intents
3.3. Native API Compatibility
3.4. Web Compatibility
3.4.1. WebView Compatibility
3.4.2. Browser Compatibility
3.5. API Behavioral Compatibility
3.6. API Namespaces
3.7. Virtual Machine Compatibility
3.8. User Interface Compatibility
3.8.1. Widgets
3.8.2. Notifications
3.8.3. Search
3.8.4. Toasts
3.8.5. Live Wallpapers
4. Application Packaging Compatibility
5. Multimedia Compatibility
5.1. Media Codecs
5.1.1. Media Decoders
5.1.2. Media Encoders
5.2. Audio Recording
5.3. Audio Latency
6. Developer Tool Compatibility
7. Hardware Compatibility
7.1. Display and Graphics
7.1.1. Screen Configurations
7.1.2. Display Metrics
7.1.3. Declared Screen Support
7.1.4. Screen Orientation
7.1.5. 3D Graphics Accleration
7.2. Input Devices
7.2.1. Keyboard
7.2.2. Non-touch Navigation
7.2.3. Navigation keys
7.2.4. Touchscreen input
7.3. Sensors
7.3.1. Accelerometer
7.3.2. Magnetometer
7.3.3. GPS
7.3.4. Gyroscope
7.3.5. Barometer
7.3.6. Thermometer
7.3.7. Photometer
7.3.8. Proximity Sensor
7.4. Data Connectivity
7.4.1. Telephony
7.4.2. IEEE 802.11 (WiFi)
7.4.3. Bluetooth
7.4.4. Near-Field Communications
7.4.5. Minimum Network Capability
7.5. Cameras
7.5.1. Rear-Facing Camera
7.5.2. Front-Facing Camera
7.5.3. Camera API Behavior
7.5.4. Camera Orientation
7.6. Memory and Storage
7.6.1. Minimum Memory and Storage
7.6.2. Application Shared Storage
7.7. USB
8. Performance Compatibility
9. Security Model Compatibility
9.1. Permissions
9.2. UID and Process Isolation
9.3. Filesystem Permissions
9.4. Alternate Execution Environments
10. Software Compatibility Testing
10.1. Compatibility Test Suite
10.2. CTS Verifier
10.3. Reference Applications
11. Updatable Software
12. Contact Us
Appendix A - Bluetooth Test Procedure

1. Introduction

This document enumerates the requirements that must be met in order for mobile phones to be compatible with Android 2.3.

The use of "must", "must not", "required", "shall", "shall not", "should", "should not", "recommended", "may" and "optional" is per the IETF standard defined in RFC2119 [Resources, 1].

As used in this document, a "device implementer" or "implementer" is a person or organization developing a hardware/software solution running Android 2.3. A "device implementation" or "implementation" is the hardware/software solution so developed.

To be considered compatible with Android 2.3, device implementations MUST meet the requirements presented in this Compatibility Definition, including any documents incorporated via reference.

Where this definition or the software tests described in Section 10 is silent, ambiguous, or incomplete, it is the responsibility of the device implementer to ensure compatibility with existing implementations. For this reason, the Android Open Source Project [Resources, 3] is both the reference and preferred implementation of Android. Device implementers are strongly encouraged to base their implementations to the greatest extent possible on the "upstream" source code available from the Android Open Source Project. While some components can hypothetically be replaced with alternate implementations this practice is strongly discouraged, as passing the software tests will become substantially more difficult. It is the implementer's responsibility to ensure full behavioral compatibility with the standard Android implementation, including and beyond the Compatibility Test Suite. Finally, note that certain component substitutions and modifications are explicitly forbidden by this document.

Please note that this Compatibility Definition is issued to correspond with the 2.3.3 update to Android, which is API level 10. This Definition obsoletes and replaces the Compatibility Definition for Android 2.3 versions prior to 2.3.3. (That is, versions 2.3.1 and 2.3.2 are obsolete.) Future Android-compatible devices running Android 2.3 MUST ship with version 2.3.3 or later.

2. Resources

  1. IETF RFC2119 Requirement Levels: http://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2119.txt
  2. Android Compatibility Program Overview: http://source.android.com/compatibility/index.html
  3. Android Open Source Project: http://source.android.com/
  4. API definitions and documentation: http://developer.android.com/reference/packages.html
  5. Android Permissions reference: http://developer.android.com/reference/android/Manifest.permission.html
  6. android.os.Build reference: http://developer.android.com/reference/android/os/Build.html
  7. Android 2.3 allowed version strings: http://source.android.com/compatibility/2.3/versions.html
  8. android.webkit.WebView class: http://developer.android.com/reference/android/webkit/WebView.html
  9. HTML5: http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/multipage/
  10. HTML5 offline capabilities: http://dev.w3.org/html5/spec/Overview.html#offline
  11. HTML5 video tag: http://dev.w3.org/html5/spec/Overview.html#video
  12. HTML5/W3C geolocation API: http://www.w3.org/TR/geolocation-API/
  13. HTML5/W3C webdatabase API: http://www.w3.org/TR/webdatabase/
  14. HTML5/W3C IndexedDB API: http://www.w3.org/TR/IndexedDB/
  15. Dalvik Virtual Machine specification: available in the Android source code, at dalvik/docs
  16. AppWidgets: http://developer.android.com/guide/practices/ui_guidelines/widget_design.html
  17. Notifications: http://developer.android.com/guide/topics/ui/notifiers/notifications.html
  18. Application Resources: http://code.google.com/android/reference/available-resources.html
  19. Status Bar icon style guide: http://developer.android.com/guide/practices/ui_guideline /icon_design.html#statusbarstructure
  20. Search Manager: http://developer.android.com/reference/android/app/SearchManager.html
  21. Toasts: http://developer.android.com/reference/android/widget/Toast.html
  22. Live Wallpapers: http://developer.android.com/resources/articles/live-wallpapers.html
  23. Reference tool documentation (for adb, aapt, ddms): http://developer.android.com/guide/developing/tools/index.html
  24. Android apk file description: http://developer.android.com/guide/topics/fundamentals.html
  25. Manifest files: http://developer.android.com/guide/topics/manifest/manifest-intro.html
  26. Monkey testing tool: http://developer.android.com/guide/developing/tools/monkey.html
  27. Android Hardware Features List: http://developer.android.com/reference/android/content/pm/PackageManager.html
  28. Supporting Multiple Screens: http://developer.android.com/guide/practices/screens_support.html
  29. android.util.DisplayMetrics: http://developer.android.com/reference/android/util/DisplayMetrics.html
  30. android.content.res.Configuration: http://developer.android.com/reference/android/content/res/Configuration.html
  31. Sensor coordinate space: http://developer.android.com/reference/android/hardware/SensorEvent.html
  32. Bluetooth API: http://developer.android.com/reference/android/bluetooth/package-summary.html
  33. NDEF Push Protocol: http://source.android.com/compatibility/ndef-push-protocol.pdf
  34. MIFARE MF1S503X: http://www.nxp.com/documents/data_sheet/MF1S503x.pdf
  35. MIFARE MF1S703X: http://www.nxp.com/documents/data_sheet/MF1S703x.pdf
  36. MIFARE MF0ICU1: http://www.nxp.com/documents/data_sheet/MF0ICU1.pdf
  37. MIFARE MF0ICU2: http://www.nxp.com/documents/short_data_sheet/MF0ICU2_SDS.pdf
  38. MIFARE AN130511: http://www.nxp.com/documents/application_note/AN130511.pdf
  39. MIFARE AN130411: http://www.nxp.com/documents/application_note/AN130411.pdf
  40. Camera orientation API: http://developer.android.com/reference/android/hardware/Camera.html#setDisplayOrientation(int)
  41. android.hardware.Camera: http://developer.android.com/reference/android/hardware/Camera.html
  42. Android Security and Permissions reference: http://developer.android.com/guide/topics/security/security.html
  43. Apps for Android: http://code.google.com/p/apps-for-android

Many of these resources are derived directly or indirectly from the Android 2.3 SDK, and will be functionally identical to the information in that SDK's documentation. In any cases where this Compatibility Definition or the Compatibility Test Suite disagrees with the SDK documentation, the SDK documentation is considered authoritative. Any technical details provided in the references included above are considered by inclusion to be part of this Compatibility Definition.

3. Software

The Android platform includes a set of managed APIs, a set of native APIs, and a body of so-called "soft" APIs such as the Intent system and web-application APIs. This section details the hard and soft APIs that are integral to compatibility, as well as certain other relevant technical and user interface behaviors. Device implementations MUST comply with all the requirements in this section.

3.1. Managed API Compatibility

The managed (Dalvik-based) execution environment is the primary vehicle for Android applications. The Android application programming interface (API) is the set of Android platform interfaces exposed to applications running in the managed VM environment. Device implementations MUST provide complete implementations, including all documented behaviors, of any documented API exposed by the Android 2.3 SDK [Resources, 4].

Device implementations MUST NOT omit any managed APIs, alter API interfaces or signatures, deviate from the documented behavior, or include no-ops, except where specifically allowed by this Compatibility Definition.

This Compatibility Definition permits some types of hardware for which Android includes APIs to be omitted by device implementations. In such cases, the APIs MUST still be present and behave in a reasonable way. See Section 7 for specific requirements for this scenario.

3.2. Soft API Compatibility

In addition to the managed APIs from Section 3.1, Android also includes a significant runtime-only "soft" API, in the form of such things such as Intents, permissions, and similar aspects of Android applications that cannot be enforced at application compile time. This section details the "soft" APIs and system behaviors required for compatibility with Android 2.3. Device implementations MUST meet all the requirements presented in this section.

3.2.1. Permissions

Device implementers MUST support and enforce all permission constants as documented by the Permission reference page [Resources, 5]. Note that Section 10 lists additional requirements related to the Android security model.

3.2.2. Build Parameters

The Android APIs include a number of constants on the android.os.Build class [Resources, 6] that are intended to describe the current device. To provide consistent, meaningful values across device implementations, the table below includes additional restrictions on the formats of these values to which device implementations MUST conform.

Parameter Comments
android.os.Build.VERSION.RELEASE The version of the currently-executing Android system, in human-readable format. This field MUST have one of the string values defined in [Resources, 7].
android.os.Build.VERSION.SDK The version of the currently-executing Android system, in a format accessible to third-party application code. For Android 2.3, this field MUST have the integer value 9.
android.os.Build.VERSION.INCREMENTAL A value chosen by the device implementer designating the specific build of the currently-executing Android system, in human-readable format. This value MUST NOT be re-used for different builds made available to end users. A typical use of this field is to indicate which build number or source-control change identifier was used to generate the build. There are no requirements on the specific format of this field, except that it MUST NOT be null or the empty string ("").
android.os.Build.BOARD A value chosen by the device implementer identifying the specific internal hardware used by the device, in human-readable format. A possible use of this field is to indicate the specific revision of the board powering the device. The value of this field MUST be encodable as 7-bit ASCII and match the regular expression "^[a-zA-Z0-9.,_-]+$".
android.os.Build.BRAND A value chosen by the device implementer identifying the name of the company, organization, individual, etc. who produced the device, in human-readable format. A possible use of this field is to indicate the OEM and/or carrier who sold the device. The value of this field MUST be encodable as 7-bit ASCII and match the regular expression "^[a-zA-Z0-9.,_-]+$".
android.os.Build.DEVICE A value chosen by the device implementer identifying the specific configuration or revision of the body (sometimes called "industrial design") of the device. The value of this field MUST be encodable as 7-bit ASCII and match the regular expression "^[a-zA-Z0-9.,_-]+$".
android.os.Build.FINGERPRINT A string that uniquely identifies this build. It SHOULD be reasonably human-readable. It MUST follow this template:
$(BRAND)/$(PRODUCT)/$(DEVICE):$(VERSION.RELEASE)/$(ID)/$(VERSION.INCREMENTAL):$(TYPE)/$(TAGS)
For example:
acme/mydevice/generic/generic:2.3/ERC77/3359:userdebug/test-keys
The fingerprint MUST NOT include whitespace characters. If other fields included in the template above have whitespace characters, they MUST be replaced in the build fingerprint with another character, such as the underscore ("_") character. The value of this field MUST be encodable as 7-bit ASCII.
android.os.Build.HOST A string that uniquely identifies the host the build was built on, in human readable format. There are no requirements on the specific format of this field, except that it MUST NOT be null or the empty string ("").
android.os.Build.ID An identifier chosen by the device implementer to refer to a specific release, in human readable format. This field can be the same as android.os.Build.VERSION.INCREMENTAL, but SHOULD be a value sufficiently meaningful for end users to distinguish between software builds. The value of this field MUST be encodable as 7-bit ASCII and match the regular expression "^[a-zA-Z0-9.,_-]+$".
android.os.Build.MODEL A value chosen by the device implementer containing the name of the device as known to the end user. This SHOULD be the same name under which the device is marketed and sold to end users. There are no requirements on the specific format of this field, except that it MUST NOT be null or the empty string ("").
android.os.Build.PRODUCT A value chosen by the device implementer containing the development name or code name of the device. MUST be human-readable, but is not necessarily intended for view by end users. The value of this field MUST be encodable as 7-bit ASCII and match the regular expression "^[a-zA-Z0-9.,_-]+$".
android.os.Build.TAGS A comma-separated list of tags chosen by the device implementer that further distinguish the build. For example, "unsigned,debug". The value of this field MUST be encodable as 7-bit ASCII and match the regular expression "^[a-zA-Z0-9.,_-]+$".
android.os.Build.TIME A value representing the timestamp of when the build occurred.
android.os.Build.TYPE A value chosen by the device implementer specifying the runtime configuration of the build. This field SHOULD have one of the values corresponding to the three typical Android runtime configurations: "user", "userdebug", or "eng". The value of this field MUST be encodable as 7-bit ASCII and match the regular expression "^[a-zA-Z0-9.,_-]+$".
android.os.Build.USER A name or user ID of the user (or automated user) that generated the build. There are no requirements on the specific format of this field, except that it MUST NOT be null or the empty string ("").

3.2.3. Intent Compatibility

Android uses Intents to achieve loosely-coupled integration between applications. This section describes requirements related to the Intent patterns that MUST be honored by device implementations. By "honored", it is meant that the device implementer MUST provide an Android Activity or Service that specifies a matching Intent filter and binds to and implements correct behavior for each specified Intent pattern.

3.2.3.1. Core Application Intents

The Android upstream project defines a number of core applications, such as a phone dialer, calendar, contacts book, music player, and so on. Device implementers MAY replace these applications with alternative versions.

However, any such alternative versions MUST honor the same Intent patterns provided by the upstream project. For example, if a device contains an alternative music player, it must still honor the Intent pattern issued by third-party applications to pick a song.

The following applications are considered core Android system applications:

The core Android system applications include various Activity, or Service components that are considered "public". That is, the attribute "android:exported" may be absent, or may have the value "true".

For every Activity or Service defined in one of the core Android system apps that is not marked as non-public via an android:exported attribute with the value "false", device implementations MUST include a compontent of the same type implementing the same Intent filter patterns as the core Android system app.

In other words, a device implementation MAY replace core Android system apps; however, if it does, the device implementation MUST support all Intent patterns defined by each core Android system app being replaced.

3.2.3.2. Intent Overrides

As Android is an extensible platform, device implementers MUST allow each Intent pattern referenced in Section 3.2.3.1 to be overridden by third-party applications. The upstream Android open source project allows this by default; device implementers MUST NOT attach special privileges to system applications' use of these Intent patterns, or prevent third-party applications from binding to and assuming control of these patterns. This prohibition specifically includes but is not limited to disabling the "Chooser" user interface which allows the user to select between multiple applications which all handle the same Intent pattern.

3.2.3.3. Intent Namespaces

Device implementers MUST NOT include any Android component that honors any new Intent or Broadcast Intent patterns using an ACTION, CATEGORY, or other key string in the android.* namespace. Device implementers MUST NOT include any Android components that honor any new Intent or Broadcast Intent patterns using an ACTION, CATEGORY, or other key string in a package space belonging to another organization. Device implementers MUST NOT alter or extend any of the Intent patterns used by the core apps listed in Section 3.2.3.1.

This prohibition is analogous to that specified for Java language classes in Section 3.6.

3.2.3.4. Broadcast Intents

Third-party applications rely on the platform to broadcast certain Intents to notify them of changes in the hardware or software environment. Android-compatible devices MUST broadcast the public broadcast Intents in response to appropriate system events. Broadcast Intents are described in the SDK documentation.

3.3. Native API Compatibility

Managed code running in Dalvik can call into native code provided in the application .apk file as an ELF .so file compiled for the appropriate device hardware architecture. As native code is highly dependent on the underlying processor technology, Android defines a number of Application Binary Interfaces (ABIs) in the Android NDK, in the file docs/CPU-ARCH-ABIS.txt. If a device implementation is compatible with one or more defined ABIs, it SHOULD implement compatibility with the Android NDK, as below.

If a device implementation includes support for an Android ABI, it:

The following native code APIs MUST be available to apps that include native code:

Note that future releases of the Android NDK may introduce support for additional ABIs. If a device implementation is not compatible with an existing predefined ABI, it MUST NOT report support for any ABI at all.

Native code compatibility is challenging. For this reason, it should be repeated that device implementers are VERY strongly encouraged to use the upstream implementations of the libraries listed above to help ensure compatibility.

3.4. Web Compatibility

Many developers and applications rely on the behavior of the android.webkit.WebView class [Resources, 8] for their user interfaces, so the WebView implementation must be compatible across Android implementations. Similarly, a complete, modern web broswer is central to the Android user experience. Device implementations MUST include a version of android.webkit.WebView consistent with the upstream Android software, and MUST include a modern HTML5-capable browser, as described below.

3.4.1. WebView Compatibility

The Android Open Source implementation uses the WebKit rendering engine to implement the android.webkit.WebView. Because it is not feasible to develop a comprehensive test suite for a web rendering system, device implementers MUST use the specific upstream build of WebKit in the WebView implementation. Specifically:

The WebView component SHOULD include support for as much of HTML5 [Resources, 9] as possible. Minimally, device implementations MUST support each of these APIs associated with HTML5 in the WebView:

Additionally, device implementations MUST support the HTML5/W3C webstorage API [Resources, 13], and SHOULD support the HTML5/W3C IndexedDB API [Resources, 14]. Note that as the web development standards bodies are transitioning to favor IndexedDB over webstorage, IndexedDB is expected to become a required component in a future version of Android.

HTML5 APIs, like all JavaScript APIs, MUST be disabled by default in a WebView, unless the developer explicitly enables them via the usual Android APIs.

3.4.2. Browser Compatibility

Device implementations MUST include a standalone Browser application for general user web browsing. The standalone Browser MAY be based on a browser technology other than WebKit. However, even if an alternate Browser application is used, the android.webkit.WebView component provided to third-party applications MUST be based on WebKit, as described in Section 3.4.1.

Implementations MAY ship a custom user agent string in the standalone Browser application.

The standalone Browser application (whether based on the upstream WebKit Browser application or a third-party replacement) SHOULD include support for as much of HTML5 [Resources, 9] as possible. Minimally, device implementations MUST support each of these APIs associated with HTML5:

Additionally, device implementations MUST support the HTML5/W3C webstorage API [Resources, 13], and SHOULD support the HTML5/W3C IndexedDB API [Resources, 14]. Note that as the web development standards bodies are transitioning to favor IndexedDB over webstorage, IndexedDB is expected to become a required component in a future version of Android.

3.5. API Behavioral Compatibility

The behaviors of each of the API types (managed, soft, native, and web) must be consistent with the preferred implementation of the upstream Android open-source project [Resources, 3]. Some specific areas of compatibility are:

The above list is not comprehensive. The Compatibility Test Suite (CTS) tests significant portions of the platform for behavioral compatibility, but not all. It is the responsibility of the implementer to ensure behavioral compatibility with the Android Open Source Project. For this reason, device implementers SHOULD use the source code available via the Android Open Source Project where possible, rather than re-implement significant parts of the system.

3.6. API Namespaces

Android follows the package and class namespace conventions defined by the Java programming language. To ensure compatibility with third-party applications, device implementers MUST NOT make any prohibited modifications (see below) to these package namespaces:

Prohibited modifications include:

A "publicly exposed element" is any construct which is not decorated with the "@hide" marker as used in the upstream Android source code. In other words, device implementers MUST NOT expose new APIs or alter existing APIs in the namespaces noted above. Device implementers MAY make internal-only modifications, but those modifications MUST NOT be advertised or otherwise exposed to developers.

Device implementers MAY add custom APIs, but any such APIs MUST NOT be in a namespace owned by or referring to another organization. For instance, device implementers MUST NOT add APIs to the com.google.* or similar namespace; only Google may do so. Similarly, Google MUST NOT add APIs to other companies' namespaces. Additionally, if a device implementation includes custom APIs outside the standard Android namespace, those APIs MUST be packaged in an Android shared library so that only apps that explicitly use them (via the <uses-library> mechanism) are affected by the increased memory usage of such APIs.

If a device implementer proposes to improve one of the package namespaces above (such as by adding useful new functionality to an existing API, or adding a new API), the implementer SHOULD visit source.android.com and begin the process for contributing changes and code, according to the information on that site.

Note that the restrictions above correspond to standard conventions for naming APIs in the Java programming language; this section simply aims to reinforce those conventions and make them binding through inclusion in this compatibility definition.

3.7. Virtual Machine Compatibility

Device implementations MUST support the full Dalvik Executable (DEX) bytecode specification and Dalvik Virtual Machine semantics [Resources, 15].

Device implementations with screens classified as medium- or low-density MUST configure Dalvik to allocate at least 16MB of memory to each application. Device implementations with screens classified as high-density or extra-high-density MUST configure Dalvik to allocate at least 24MB of memory to each application. Note that device implementations MAY allocate more memory than these figures.

3.8. User Interface Compatibility

The Android platform includes some developer APIs that allow developers to hook into the system user interface. Device implementations MUST incorporate these standard UI APIs into custom user interfaces they develop, as explained below.

3.8.1. Widgets

Android defines a component type and corresponding API and lifecycle that allows applications to expose an "AppWidget" to the end user [Resources, 16]. The Android Open Source reference release includes a Launcher application that includes user interface elements allowing the user to add, view, and remove AppWidgets from the home screen.

Device implementers MAY substitute an alternative to the reference Launcher (i.e. home screen). Alternative Launchers SHOULD include built-in support for AppWidgets, and expose user interface elements to add, configure, view, and remove AppWidgets directly within the Launcher. Alternative Launchers MAY omit these user interface elements; however, if they are omitted, the device implementer MUST provide a separate application accessible from the Launcher that allows users to add, configure, view, and remove AppWidgets.

3.8.2. Notifications

Android includes APIs that allow developers to notify users of notable events [Resources, 17]. Device implementers MUST provide support for each class of notification so defined; specifically: sounds, vibration, light and status bar.

Additionally, the implementation MUST correctly render all resources (icons, sound files, etc.) provided for in the APIs [Resources, 18], or in the Status Bar icon style guide [Resources, 19]. Device implementers MAY provide an alternative user experience for notifications than that provided by the reference Android Open Source implementation; however, such alternative notification systems MUST support existing notification resources, as above.

Android includes APIs [Resources, 20] that allow developers to incorporate search into their applications, and expose their application's data into the global system search. Generally speaking, this functionality consists of a single, system-wide user interface that allows users to enter queries, displays suggestions as users type, and displays results. The Android APIs allow developers to reuse this interface to provide search within their own apps, and allow developers to supply results to the common global search user interface.

Device implementations MUST include a single, shared, system-wide search user interface capable of real-time suggestions in response to user input. Device implementations MUST implement the APIs that allow developers to reuse this user interface to provide search within their own applications. Device implementations MUST implement the APIs that allow third-party applications to add suggestions to the search box when it is run in global search mode. If no third-party applications are installed that make use of this functionality, the default behavior SHOULD be to display web search engine results and suggestions.

Device implementations MAY ship alternate search user interfaces, but SHOULD include a hard or soft dedicated search button, that can be used at any time within any app to invoke the search framework, with the behavior provided for in the API documentation.

3.8.4. Toasts

Applications can use the "Toast" API (defined in [Resources, 21]) to display short non-modal strings to the end user, that disappear after a brief period of time. Device implementations MUST display Toasts from applications to end users in some high-visibility manner.

3.8.5. Live Wallpapers

Android defines a component type and corresponding API and lifecycle that allows applications to expose one or more "Live Wallpapers" to the end user [Resources, 22]. Live Wallpapers are animations, patterns, or similar images with limited input capabilities that display as a wallpaper, behind other applications.

Hardware is considered capable of reliably running live wallpapers if it can run all live wallpapers, with no limitations on functionality, at a reasonable framerate with no adverse affects on other applications. If limitations in the hardware cause wallpapers and/or applications to crash, malfunction, consume excessive CPU or battery power, or run at unacceptably low frame rates, the hardware is considered incapable of running live wallpaper. As an example, some live wallpapers may use an Open GL 1.0 or 2.0 context to render their content. Live wallpaper will not run reliably on hardware that does not support multiple OpenGL contexts because the live wallpaper use of an OpenGL context may conflict with other applications that also use an OpenGL context.

Device implementations capable of running live wallpapers reliably as described above SHOULD implement live wallpapers. Device implementations determined to not run live wallpapers reliably as described above MUST NOT implement live wallpapers.

4. Application Packaging Compatibility

Device implementations MUST install and run Android ".apk" files as generated by the "aapt" tool included in the official Android SDK [Resources, 23].

Devices implementations MUST NOT extend either the .apk [Resources, 24], Android Manifest [Resources, 25], or Dalvik bytecode [Resources, 15] formats in such a way that would prevent those files from installing and running correctly on other compatible devices. Device implementers SHOULD use the reference upstream implementation of Dalvik, and the reference implementation's package management system.

5. Multimedia Compatibility

Device implementations MUST fully implement all multimedia APIs. Device implementations MUST include support for all multimedia codecs described below, and SHOULD meet the sound processing guidelines described below. Device implementations MUST include at least one form of audio output, such as speakers, headphone jack, external speaker connection, etc.

5.1. Media Codecs

Device implementations MUST support the multimedia codecs as detailed in the following sections. All of these codecs are provided as software implementations in the preferred Android implementation from the Android Open-Source Project.

Please note that neither Google nor the Open Handset Alliance make any representation that these codecs are unencumbered by third-party patents. Those intending to use this source code in hardware or software products are advised that implementations of this code, including in open source software or shareware, may require patent licenses from the relevant patent holders.

The tables below do not list specific bitrate requirements for most video codecs. The reason for this is that in practice, current device hardware does not necessarily support bitrates that map exactly to the required bitrates specified by the relevant standards. Instead, device implementations SHOULD support the highest bitrate practical on the hardware, up to the limits defined by the specifications.

5.1.1. Media Decoders

Device implementations MUST include an implementation of an decoder for each codec and format described in the table below. Note that decoders for each of these media types are provided by the upstream Android Open-Source Project.

Audio
Name Details File/Container Format
AAC LC/LTP Mono/Stereo content in any combination of standard bit rates up to 160 kbps and sampling rates between 8 to 48kHz 3GPP (.3gp) and MPEG-4 (.mp4, .m4a). No support for raw AAC (.aac)
HE-AACv1 (AAC+)
HE-AACv2 (enhanced AAC+)
AMR-NB 4.75 to 12.2 kbps sampled @ 8kHz 3GPP (.3gp)
AMR-WB 9 rates from 6.60 kbit/s to 23.85 kbit/s sampled @ 16kHz 3GPP (.3gp)
MP3 Mono/Stereo 8-320Kbps constant (CBR) or variable bit-rate (VBR) MP3 (.mp3)
MIDI MIDI Type 0 and 1. DLS Version 1 and 2. XMF and Mobile XMF. Support for ringtone formats RTTTL/RTX, OTA, and iMelody Type 0 and 1 (.mid, .xmf, .mxmf). Also RTTTL/RTX (.rtttl, .rtx), OTA (.ota), and iMelody (.imy)
Ogg Vorbis   Ogg (.ogg)
PCM 8- and 16-bit linear PCM (rates up to limit of hardware) WAVE (.wav)
Image
JPEG base+progressive  
GIF    
PNG    
BMP    
Video
H.263   3GPP (.3gp) files
H.264   3GPP (.3gp) and MPEG-4 (.mp4) files
MPEG4 Simple Profile   3GPP (.3gp) file

5.1.2. Media Encoders

Device implementations SHOULD include encoders for as many of the media formats listed in Section 5.1.1. as possible. However, some encoders do not make sense for devices that lack certain optional hardware; for instance, an encoder for the H.263 video does not make sense, if the device lacks any cameras. Device implementations MUST therefore implement media encoders according to the conditions described in the table below.

See Section 7 for details on the conditions under which hardware may be omitted by device implementations.

Audio
Name Details File/Container Format Conditions
AMR-NB 4.75 to 12.2 kbps sampled @ 8kHz 3GPP (.3gp) Device implementations that include microphone hardware and define android.hardware.microphone MUST include encoders for these audio formats.
AMR-WB 9 rates from 6.60 kbit/s to 23.85 kbit/s sampled @ 16kHz 3GPP (.3gp)
AAC LC/LTP Mono/Stereo content in any combination of standard bit rates up to 160 kbps and sampling rates between 8 to 48kHz 3GPP (.3gp) and MPEG-4 (.mp4, .m4a).
Image JPEG base+progressive   All device implementations MUST include encoders for these image formats, as Android 2.3 includes APIs that applications can use to programmatically generate files of these types.
PNG    
Video H.263   3GPP (.3gp) files Device implementations that include camera hardware and define either android.hardware.camera or android.hardware.camera.front MUST include encoders for these video formats.

In addition to the encoders listed above, device implementations SHOULD include an H.264 encoder. Note that the Compatibility Definition for a future version is planned to change this requirement to "MUST". That is, H.264 encoding is optional in Android 2.3 but will be required by a future version. Existing and new devices that run Android 2.3 are very strongly encouraged to meet this requirement in Android 2.3, or they will not be able to attain Android compatibility when upgraded to the future version.

5.2. Audio Recording

When an application has used the android.media.AudioRecord API to start recording an audio stream, device implementations SHOULD sample and record audio with each of these behaviors:

Note: while the requirements outlined above are stated as "SHOULD" for Android 2.3, the Compatibility Definition for a future version is planned to change these to "MUST". That is, these requirements are optional in Android 2.3 but will be required by a future version. Existing and new devices that run Android 2.3 are very strongly encouraged to meet these requirements in Android 2.3, or they will not be able to attain Android compatibility when upgraded to the future version.

5.3. Audio Latency

Audio latency is broadly defined as the interval between when an application requests an audio playback or record operation, and when the device implementation actually begins the operation. Many classes of applications rely on short latencies, to achieve real-time effects such sound effects or VOIP communication. Device implementations that include microphone hardware and declare android.hardware.microphone SHOULD meet all audio latency requirements outlined in this section. See Section 7 for details on the conditions under which microphone hardware may be omitted by device implementations.

For the purposes of this section:

Using the above definitions, device implementations SHOULD exhibit each of these properties:

Note: while the requirements outlined above are stated as "SHOULD" for Android 2.3, the Compatibility Definition for a future version is planned to change these to "MUST". That is, these requirements are optional in Android 2.3 but will be required by a future version. Existing and new devices that run Android 2.3 are very strongly encouraged to meet these requirements in Android 2.3, or they will not be able to attain Android compatibility when upgraded to the future version.

If a device implementation meets the requirements of this section, it MAY report support for low-latency audio, by reporting the feature "android.hardware.audio.low-latency" via the android.content.pm.PackageManager class. [Resources, 27] Conversely, if the device implementation does not meet these requirements it MUST NOT report support for low-latency audio.

6. Developer Tool Compatibility

Device implementations MUST support the Android Developer Tools provided in the Android SDK. Specifically, Android-compatible devices MUST be compatible with:

Most Linux-based systems and Apple Macintosh systems recognize Android devices using the standard Android SDK tools, without additional support; however Microsoft Windows systems typically require a driver for new Android devices. (For instance, new vendor IDs and sometimes new device IDs require custom USB drivers for Windows systems.) If a device implementation is unrecognized by the adb tool as provided in the standard Android SDK, device implementers MUST provide Windows drivers allowing developers to connect to the device using the adb protocol. These drivers MUST be provided for Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7, in both 32-bit and 64-bit versions.

7. Hardware Compatibility

Android is intended to enable device implementers to create innovative form factors and configurations. At the same time Android developers write innovative applications that rely on the various hardware and features available through the Android APIs. The requirements in this section strike a balance between innovations available to device implementers, and the needs of developers to ensure their apps are only available to devices where they will run properly.

If a device includes a particular hardware component that has a corresponding API for third-party developers, the device implementation MUST implement that API as described in the Android SDK documentation. If an API in the SDK interacts with a hardware component that is stated to be optional and the device implementation does not possess that component:

A typical example of a scenario where these requirements apply is the telephony API: even on non-phone devices, these APIs must be implemented as reasonable no-ops.

Device implementations MUST accurately report accurate hardware configuration information via the getSystemAvailableFeatures() and hasSystemFeature(String) methods on the android.content.pm.PackageManager class. [Resources, 27]

7.1. Display and Graphics

Android 2.3 includes facilities that automatically adjust application assets and UI layouts appropriately for the device, to ensure that third-party applications run well on a variety of hardware configurations [Resources, 28]. Devices MUST properly implement these APIs and behaviors, as detailed in this section.

7.1.1. Screen Configurations

Device implementations MAY use screens of any pixel dimensions, provided that they meet the following requirements:

Device implementations with a screen meeting the requirements above are considered compatible, and no additional action is necessary. The Android framework implementation automatically computes display characteristics such as screen size bucket and density bucket. In the majority of cases, the framework decisions are the correct ones. If the default framework computations are used, no additional action is necessary. Device implementers wishing to change the defaults, or use a screen that does not meet the requirements above MUST contact the Android Compatibility Team for guidance, as provided for in Section 12.

The units used by the requirements above are defined as follows:

Device implementations MUST use only displays with a single static configuration. That is, device implementations MUST NOT enable multiple screen configurations. For instance, since a typical television supports multiple resolutions such as 1080p, 720p, and so on, this configuration is not compatible with Android 2.3. (However, support for such configurations is under investigation and planned for a future version of Android.)

7.1.2. Display Metrics

Device implementations MUST report correct values for all display metrics defined in android.util.DisplayMetrics [Resources, 29].

7.1.3. Declared Screen Support

Applications optionally indicate which screen sizes they support via the <supports-screens> attribute in the AndroidManifest.xml file. Device implementations MUST correctly honor applications' stated support for small, medium, and large screens, as described in the Android SDK documentation.

7.1.4. Screen Orientation

Compatible devices MUST support dynamic orientation by applications to either portrait or landscape screen orientation. That is, the device must respect the application's request for a specific screen orientation. Device implementations MAY select either portrait or landscape orientation as the default. Devices that cannot be physically rotated MAY meet this requirement by "letterboxing" applications that request portrait mode, using only a portion of the available display.

Devices MUST report the correct value for the device's current orientation, whenever queried via the android.content.res.Configuration.orientation, android.view.Display.getOrientation(), or other APIs.

7.1.5. 3D Graphics Acceleration

Device implementations MUST support OpenGL ES 1.0, as required by the Android 2.3 APIs. For devices that lack 3D acceleration hardware, a software implementation of OpenGL ES 1.0 is provided by the upstream Android Open-Source Project. Device implementations SHOULD support OpenGL ES 2.0.

Implementations MAY omit Open GL ES 2.0 support; however if support is omitted, device implementations MUST NOT report as supporting OpenGL ES 2.0. Specifically, if a device implementations lacks OpenGL ES 2.0 support:

Conversely, if a device implementation does support OpenGL ES 2.0, it MUST accurately report that support via the routes just listed.

Note that Android 2.3 includes support for applications to optionally specify that they require specific OpenGL texture compression formats. These formats are typically vendor-specific. Device implementations are not required by Android 2.3 to implement any specific texture compression format. However, they SHOULD accurately report any texture compression formats that they do support, via the getString() method in the OpenGL API.

7.2. Input Devices

Android 2.3 supports a number of modalities for user input. Device implementations MUST support user input devices as provided for in this section.

7.2.1. Keyboard

Device implementations:

7.2.2. Non-touch Navigation

Device implementations:

7.2.3. Navigation keys

The Home, Menu and Back functions are essential to the Android navigation paradigm. Device implementations MUST make these functions available to the user at all times, regardless of application state. These functions SHOULD be implemented via dedicated buttons. They MAY be implemented using software, gestures, touch panel, etc., but if so they MUST be always accessible and not obscure or interfere with the available application display area.

Device implementers SHOULD also provide a dedicated search key. Device implementers MAY also provide send and end keys for phone calls.

7.2.4. Touchscreen input

Device implementations:

7.3. Sensors

Android 2.3 includes APIs for accessing a variety of sensor types. Devices implementations generally MAY omit these sensors, as provided for in the following subsections. If a device includes a particular sensor type that has a corresponding API for third-party developers, the device implementation MUST implement that API as described in the Android SDK documentation. For example, device implementations:

The list above is not comprehensive; the documented behavior of the Android SDK is to be considered authoritative.

Some sensor types are synthetic, meaning they can be derived from data provided by one or more other sensors. (Examples include the orientation sensor, and the linear acceleration sensor.) Device implementations SHOULD implement these sensor types, when they include the prerequisite physical sensors.

The Android 2.3 APIs introduce a notion of a "streaming" sensor, which is one that returns data continuously, rather than only when the data changes. Device implementations MUST continuously provide periodic data samples for any API indicated by the Android 2.3 SDK documentation to be a streaming sensor.

7.3.1. Accelerometer

Device implementations SHOULD include a 3-axis accelerometer. If a device implementation does include a 3-axis accelerometer, it:

7.3.2. Magnetometer

Device implementations SHOULD include a 3-axis magnetometer (i.e. compass.) If a device does include a 3-axis magnetometer, it:

7.3.3. GPS

Device implementations SHOULD include a GPS receiver. If a device implementation does include a GPS receiver, it SHOULD include some form of "assisted GPS" technique to minimize GPS lock-on time.

7.3.4. Gyroscope

Device implementations SHOULD include a gyroscope (i.e. angular change sensor.) Devices SHOULD NOT include a gyroscope sensor unless a 3-axis accelerometer is also included. If a device implementation includes a gyroscope, it:

7.3.5. Barometer

Device implementations MAY include a barometer (i.e. ambient air pressure sensor.) If a device implementation includes a barometer, it:

7.3.7. Thermometer

Device implementations MAY but SHOULD NOT include a thermometer (i.e. temperature sensor.) If a device implementation does include a thermometer, it MUST measure the temperature of the device CPU. It MUST NOT measure any other temperature. (Note that this sensor type is deprecated in the Android 2.3 APIs.)

7.3.7. Photometer

Device implementations MAY include a photometer (i.e. ambient light sensor.)

7.3.8. Proximity Sensor

Device implementations MAY include a proximity sensor. If a device implementation does include a proximity sensor, it MUST measure the proximity of an object in the same direction as the screen. That is, the proximity sensor MUST be oriented to detect objects close to the screen, as the primary intent of this sensor type is to detect a phone in use by the user. If a device implementation includes a proximity sensor with any other orientation, it MUST NOT be accessible through this API. If a device implementation has a proximity sensor, it MUST be have 1-bit of accuracy or more.

7.4. Data Connectivity

Network connectivity and access to the Internet are vital features of Android. Meanwhile, device-to-device interaction adds significant value to Android devices and applications. Device implementations MUST meet the data connectivity requirements in this section.

7.4.1. Telephony

"Telephony" as used by the Android 2.3 APIs and this document refers specifically to hardware related to placing voice calls and sending SMS messages via a GSM or CDMA network. While these voice calls may or may not be packet-switched, they are for the purposes of Android 2.3 considered independent of any data connectivity that may be implemented using the same network. In other words, the Android "telephony" functionality and APIs refer specifically to voice calls and SMS; for instance, device implementations that cannot place calls or send/receive SMS messages MUST NOT report the "android.hardware.telephony" feature or any sub-features, regardless of whether they use a cellular network for data connectivity.

Android 2.3 MAY be used on devices that do not include telephony hardware. That is, Android 2.3 is compatible with devices that are not phones. However, if a device implementation does include GSM or CDMA telephony, it MUST implement full support for the API for that technology. Device implementations that do not include telephony hardware MUST implement the full APIs as no-ops.

7.4.2. IEEE 802.11 (WiFi)

Android 2.3 device implementations SHOULD include support for one or more forms of 802.11 (b/g/a/n, etc.) If a device implementation does include support for 802.11, it MUST implement the corresponding Android API.

7.4.3. Bluetooth

Device implementations SHOULD include a Bluetooth transceiver. Device implementations that do include a Bluetooth transceiver MUST enable the RFCOMM-based Bluetooth API as described in the SDK documentation [Resources, 32]. Device implementations SHOULD implement relevant Bluetooth profiles, such as A2DP, AVRCP, OBEX, etc. as appropriate for the device.

The Compatibility Test Suite includes cases that cover basic operation of the Android RFCOMM Bluetooth API. However, since Bluetooth is a communications protocol between devices, it cannot be fully tested by unit tests running on a single device. Consequently, device implementations MUST also pass the human-driven Bluetooth test procedure described in Appendix A.

7.4.4. Near-Field Communications

Device implementations SHOULD include a transceiver and related hardware for Near-Field Communications (NFC). If a device implementation does include NFC hardware, then it: