Android 4.4 KitKat SDK is now live

Nigel Quadros
November 1, 2013
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Android 4.4 KitKat

Traditionally, Google has been good and at their best about releasing operating system updates in a timely fashion and Android KitKat was announced this morning along with the Nexus 5. Google has already updated the Android SDK with 4.4 KitKat so now developers can begin to upgrade their Developer Kit and start fiddling around with the new version of Android.

The complete Android Developer Tools bundle for Windows comes with the Android SDK Tools, Android Platform-Tools, the Eclipse+ ADT plugin. In addition the latest Android system image for the emulator also tags along. The Android support library has been updated too as per source in order to help maintain the apps for compatibility with previous versions of Android.

Below are a list of important highlights from the Android Developers Blog:

  • New ways to create beautiful apps — A new full-screen immersive modelets your app or game use every pixel on the screen to showcase content and capture touch events. A new transitions framework makes it easier to animate the states in your UI. Web content can take advantage of a completely new implementation of WebView built on Chromium.
  • More useful than ever — A printing framework lets you add the convenience of printing to your apps. A storage access framework makes it easier for users find documents, photos, and other data across their local and cloud-based storage services. You can integrate your app or storage service with the framework to give users instant access to their data.
  • Low-power sensors — New hardware-integrated sensors let you add great new features to your apps without draining the battery. Included are a step detector and step counter that let you efficiently track of the number of walking steps, even when the screen is off.
  • New media capabilities — A new screen recorder lets you capture high-quality video of your app directly from your Android device. It’s a great new way to create walk-throughs, tutorials, marketing videos, and more. Apps can use adaptive playback to offer a significantly better streaming video experience.
  • RenderScript in the NDK — A new C++ API in the Android Native Development Kit (NDK) lets you use RenderScript from your native code, with access to script intrinsics, custom kernels, and more.
  • Improved accessibility support — New system-wide captioning settings let your apps present closed captions in the style that’s preferred by the user.

In addition to all the above, the Nexus 5 binaries and system factory image should be available later today and also the Android 4.4 KitKat is going to be available for select devices.

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