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American tech giant Google is trying to make it easier for developers to create Android apps that connect across a range of devices.
According to The Verge , Google explained on Blogspot that it’s launching a new cross-device software development kit (SDK) that includes the tools developers need to make their apps play well on Android devices, as well as phones, tablets and other devices other than Android, TV, cars and more.
The SDK is intended to enable developers to do three key things with their applications: discover surrounding devices, establish secure connections between devices, and host the application environment on multiple devices. According to Google, its cross-device SDK uses Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and ultra-broadband to connect multiple devices.
Google has described different use cases for its SDK for different devices on its documentation page, and it looks like it could come in handy in a few scenarios. For example, it could allow multiple users on separate devices to select menu items when creating a group food order, saving them from carrying their phones around the room.
It could also allow users to pick up where they left off in an article when switching from a phone to a tablet, or even allow car passengers to share a specific map location with the vehicle’s navigation system, The Verge reported.
It almost sounds like an extension of Nearby Sharing, which lets Android users transfer files to Chromebooks and other Androids. Back in April, Esper’s Mishaal Rahman spotted an upcoming Nearby Sharing update that will let you quickly share files across devices you’re signed in to Google on.
According to The Verge, the cross-device toolkit is currently available in a developer version and only works with Android phones and tablets so far. Google eventually wants to expand support to “other Android platforms and non-Android operating systems,” including iOS and Windows, but it’s not known when that will happen.