Hackers graft Google Android onto hardware

As first prototype surfaces

Mobile phone handsets based on Google's Android platform are due to appear some time in the second half of this year but hackers have already got a cut-down version of the software running on devices.

By combining an Android Software Development kit with an emulator and a Poky Linux kernel, a hacker called Cortez has created an installer which enables interested parties to run the platform on the Sharp Zaurus PDA. A similar approach allowed the platform to run from an Atmark-Techno Armadillo-500 CPU board, Telecoms.com reports.

In both cases, the hacked-together software offer limited functionality only.

In related news Taiwanese vendor Wistron NeWeb unwrapped a prototype of what may become the first commercially available Android phone. Prototypes of the GW4 phone feature a touch screen and QWERTY keyboard, a 2 mega-pixel camera, WiFi, Bluetooth and VoIP support. Early examples run MontaVista Linux.

The gizmo runs on a OMAP 1710 chipset with a 216MHz processor but just 64MB of memory, Information Week adds. ®

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