[German Version]It’s cool, what we can do with an old Asus Eee PC 701G. I’ve experimented here a lot with Android x86 Ice Cream Sandwich on this machine. With a few modifcations, the netbook may be used as an Android machine and is capable to run Angry Birds or similar apps. In several articles I like to show, how to use Asus Eee PC 701 G (or other x86 machines) as Android devices. The first article is a kind of hands on.
Here I’ve reported, that Android-x86.org project releases Android-x86 4.0 RC2 (Release Candidate 2 of Ice Cream Sandwich). Reading the change logs, I noticed, that RC2 contains a German keyboard layout for external keyboards. And RC2 was also prepared for ARM emulation (the libs aren’t shipped, due to license restrictions). So I installed Android x86 4.0 RC2 last night on my Asus Eee PC 701G, tried to figure out, how to change external keyboard layout to German (not as simple as promised, I have had to extend the keyboard mapping files) – and I installed the libhoudini libraries, to establish ARM emulation. Afterward I was able to run Angry Birds and other Android apps depending on ARM CPUs. Beside the Eee PC 701 G the approach I’ve tested, will also work on other x86 machines (netbooks, notebooks, tablet pcs). I’ve blogged already how to use a MSI Wind U100 (aka Medion Akoya Mini 1210) or a Petagon Lucid slate (aka WeTab Tablet PC) with Android x86.
A first impression of Android x86 4.x RC2
I used a live system for my first tests. Therefore I create a USB pen drive with android x86 install files. My idea was to become a first glance, how RC2 will handle Eee PC. My conclusion: Boots, is useable, but there is (obviously) no ARM support. Below is a screenshot of the Lock screen shown.
After unlocking, using a track pad, I was greeted by android’s home screen. The screen shown below is already modified – I’ve exchanged the background, because I dislike the background shipped with the stock installation/live system.
The screenshot was created on a installed version, because some additional android apps are installed. The two apps Adobe Reader and Angry Birds are ARM-based and won’t be available for stock android x86 systems. But, as mentioned, I’ve added an ARM emulator to execute those apps. Below is a picture of my Eee PC 701 G with Angry Birds splash screen.
And here is a small YouTube video as a proof, showing how smooth Angry Birds runs on an 800 MHz Celeron x86-CPU with ARM emulation (note: my explanations are still in German language – I was to lazy, to create another video with an English audio channel – maybe I will do that later).
Everything runs smooth (except YouTube videos are sometimes jerky). After changing keyboard layout to German QUERTZ with @ key, an after installing ARM emulator and after adjusting screen brightness, the Android x86 netbook could be a funny device. If you run Android x86 on a Atom based netbook or slate, even more CPU and GPU power will be suitable. I will all further details about installation, ARM extension, foreign keyboard support in additional articles. I will link them after they are online.
i: Running Angry Birds on an Eee PC 701G with Android x86 – Part 1
ii: Installing Android x86 4 RC2 on an Asus PC 701G – Part 2
iii: Modify keyboard settings in Android x86 4 RC2 – Part 3
iv: Installing ARM-Emulator on Android x86 4 RC2 – Part 4
a: Running Honeycomb on a Eee PC 701G
b: Testdrive: Android x86 3.2 RC2 on Eee PC & MSI Wind U 100
c: Running Android x86 ICS RC1 on Eee PC 701G and other Netbooks
d: Installing Android x86 on a SD card