Android KitKat that was released in October last year came with it a raft of features and an important aspect of Kitkat is to allow entry level smartphones receive the latest Android upgrades. Fear has been that bigger OSes that consume more memory and battery will make these low entry level phones run out of power faster and perform at a snail pace. But Google is baking something that will improve on these, they call it ART (Android RunTime).
Android RunTime is the Google’s RunTime System that will replace Dalvik, the current programme that lets your Apps run. The function of RunTime System or Programme is to transform an App’s source code to an executable interface (or the interface that can work when you open and use the App). Dalvik that currently does this work in Android OS always transforms the source code every time you open up an App using the Just In Time (JIT) protocol. The process of transforming a source code to an executable interface takes 1. Time and 2. Battery Power.
To save on the two, Android is testing a new RunTime Programme, the ART or Android RunTime. Instead of transforming an App’s source code each time the App is called up (opened), ART will transform the source code at Installation and save the executable files somewhere in the phone’s memory using Ahead Of Time (AOT) protocol. This will make Apps be on the “ready” state so that opening them will be within a flash…the lag you notice when Appas are loading will miraculously disappear. Android RunTime also saves on battery power (by up to 30%) since the process of transforming Apps’ source codes are done at installation… so there will be no need to use battery to transform source codes to executable codes every time an App is loaded.
There is one downside of ART though. As you can realize, the Android RunTime will need to save the executable codes on the phone’s memory hence it will eat up on your available memory. The more Apps you install, the more memory it will need. Phones with low memory may not be able to run on ART.
Android RunTime is currently on a pilot testing phase. Those with Android 4.4.2 (KitKat) can decide to be part of pilot testing by enabling the ART via the setting.
- Go to Setting – About Phone – Build Number.
- Tap on the Build Number several times until you are told that you are a developer.
- Go back to setting and now select Developer Options
- Under Select RuntimeÂ choose “Use ART”.