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May 24th, 2016

A Look at Android Apps on Chromebook

The Video Screening Room

While the initial reaction from the FOSS community to Android Apps on Chromebooks will probably be a little cooler than lukewarm, the fact is that this might eventually be good for free and open source software.

When Google announced this week that future Chromebooks (and some current ones) will be able to run Android apps, a booming thunderclap spread across Silicon Valley — and could be heard in the four corners of the world. This news is indeed a game changer, reported nicely here in video form by The Verge.

What many people will be wondering about now is how to create Android apps. My advice is go straight to Lynda.com, where you’ll find many excellent Android training tutorials. A good place to start? “Android App Development Essential Training” with David Gassner. Note – Lynda.com is available for an affordable monthly subscription fee and can also be accessed for free via certain public library systems in the United States. Yes, you can feast on all of Lynda.com training videos via some public libraries — in the comfort of your own home. If your library subscribes to the service, all you’ll need is your library card to log in.

I’d also point people towards Livecode.com, a software creation toolkit that is available in a free community version. Livecode lets you create Android apps, iOS apps as well as standalone programs that run on Linux, Mac, or Windows. Public libraries around the world need to start teaching Livecode workshops. Or we could continue teaching Intro to Microsoft Word. Which do you think would be more useful for our communities?

For the past 10 years, Phil has been working at a public library in the Washington D.C.-area, helping youth and adults use the 28 public Linux stations the library offers seven days a week. He also writes for MAKE magazine, Opensource.com and TechSoup Libraries. Suggest videos by contacting Phil on Twitter or at pshapiro@his.com.

1 comment to A Look at Android Apps on Chromebook

  • In the video he is running everything on a Chromebook Pixel 2 which is an Intel i5-based laptop that retails for $999. I would hope Android applications run well on it. On older Chromebooks with Atom or Arm processors? Not sure yet.

    Now you can have Android application privacy violations on your laptop too. Oh, goodie.