Android Developers team today released an updated "version 7 of the Android 4.0 NDK." Now revision 7 of the NDK lets developers who are using native code get started with the new native APIs available in Android 4.0, announced Xavier Ducrohet, Android SDK Tech Lead.
"The Android NDK is a companion tool to the Android SDK that lets you build performance-critical portions of your apps in native code. It provides headers and libraries that allow you to build activities, handle user input, use hardware sensors, access application resources, and more, when programming in C or C++. If you write native code, your applications are still packaged into an .apk file and they still run inside of a virtual machine on the device. The fundamental Android application model does not change.
Using native code does not result in an automatic performance increase, but always increases application complexity. If you have not run into any limitations using the Android framework APIs, you probably do not need the NDK."
Android NDK r7 includes a number of build system improvements and bug fixes, but most importantly it gives you access to two new sets of APIs:
"Low-level streaming multimedia: A new API based on Khronos OpenMAX AL 1.0.1 provides a direct, efficient path for low-level streaming multimedia. The new path is ideal for applications that need to maintain complete control over media data before passing it to the platform for presentation. For example, media applications can now retrieve data from any source, apply proprietary encryption/decryption, and then send the data to the platform for display.
Audio decoding into PCM: Extensions to the existing native audio API based on Khronos OpenSL ES let native apps decode compressed audio assets to PCM format," reveals Ducrohet.
The NDK is designed for use only in conjunction with the Android SDK. If you have not already installed and setup the Android SDK, please do so before downloading the NDK.