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Change the Android support description on!

asked 2016-02-10 20:29:26 +0200

Lomax gravatar image

updated 2016-02-10 20:35:10 +0200

Currently the text describing the Android support on's front-page reads:

Sailfish OS can run Android™ applications. It is based on open source Android libraries, ensuring performance comparable to the native environment.

(my emphasis)

To a complete newcomer, this could easily give the impression that SailfishOS is based on Android, which of course is not the case. It would be much clearer if it said something like "The optional Android support in Sailfish OS is based on open source Android libraries.". Maybe I'm biased, but I came to Sailfish to get away from Google, and this wording gets right up my nose.

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I agree, could be clearer that way.

juiceme ( 2016-02-10 20:37:23 +0200 )edit

Furthermore,it could be mentioned that sailfish os may run android applications. It does not run apps depending on android newer than kitkat, depending on google play services. Aliendalvik in sasilfish os is quite unstable, as far as I am concerned.

Moo-Crumpus ( 2016-02-11 09:01:33 +0200 )edit

At least it should be mentioned, that Sailfish OS only runs Android apps on devices with an officially licenced Alien dalvik installed.

wanderer ( 2016-02-11 09:10:51 +0200 )edit

1 Answer

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answered 2016-02-11 09:12:22 +0200

t-lo gravatar image

I don't think this refers to aliendalvik, but to the low level hardware adaptation. Take a look at the SailfishOS stack (from

Sailfish stack

We can clearly identify the optional propriatary Android runtime (Myriad's Aliendalvik). However, the hardware adaptationat the very bottom shows libhybris (a modified version of bionic, Android's C library/runtime) as well as Android hardware abstraction layer (hal) services. By the way, the kernel we're running on the Jolla Phone is an Android-specific vendor kernel provided by the SoC vendor (it's a far cry from any vanilla version; and no upgrade to a newer version is possible). Without vendor support we would not have drivers for video, audio, telephony, opengl, etc... Jolla did not write those dirvers, nor are they even close to being resourced to actually do this themselves.

The (optional) Aliendalvik high-level libraries interface with those (mandatory) low-level Android layers. There's yet another Android hidden in your phone. On the upside it's mostly open source; at least all the Google low level stuff is. Vendor kernels however often include proprietary kernel modules for e.g. graphics and telephony (that's true everywhere, AOSP, CyanogenMod and all the others use those, too).

I strongly suspect the text on the sailfishos page refers to the low level layers; not to Aliendalvik.

Hope this helps,


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Asked: 2016-02-10 20:29:26 +0200

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Last updated: Feb 11 '16