The Android SDK includes a mobile device emulator — a virtual mobile device that runs on your computer. The emulator lets you develop and test Android applications without using a physical device. The word “emulator” was first coined in 1963 at IBM during development of the NPL (IBM 360) product line, using a “new combination of software, microcode, and hardware”. IBM discovered that using microcode hardware instead of software simulation, to execute programs written for earlier IBM computers, dramatically increased simulation speed. Earlier in 1957, IBM provided the IBM 709 computer with an interpreter program (software) to execute legacy programs written for the IBM 704 to run on the IBM 709 and later on the IBM 7090 In 1963, when microcode was first used to speed up this simulation process, IBM engineers coined the term “emulator” to describe the concept.
You can configure the version of the Android system you would like to run, the size of the SD card, the screen resolution and other relevant settings. You can define several of them with different configurations. These devices are called Android Virtual Device and you can start several in parallel.
Google vs. Android AVD
During the creation of an AVD you decide if you want an Android device or a Google device. An AVD created for Android will contain the programs from the Android Open Source Project. An AVD created for the Google API’s will also contain several Google applications, most notable the Google Maps application. If you want to use functionality which is only provided via the Google API’s, e.g. Google Maps you must run this application on an AVD with Google API’s. The emulator supports a variety of options that you can specify when launching the emulator
Table summarizes the mappings between the emulator keys and the keys of your keyboard.
Table: Emulator keyboard mapping
|Emulated Device Key||Keyboard Key|
|Menu (left softkey)||F2 or Page-up button|
|Star (right softkey)||Shift-F2 or Page Down|
|Hangup/end call button||F4|
|Audio volume up button||KEYPAD_PLUS, Ctrl-F5|
|Audio volume down button||KEYPAD_MINUS, Ctrl-F6|
|Camera button||Ctrl-KEYPAD_5, Ctrl-F3|
|Switch to previous layout orientation (for example, portrait, landscape)||KEYPAD_7, Ctrl-F11|
|Switch to next layout orientation (for example, portrait, landscape)||KEYPAD_9, Ctrl-F12|
|Toggle cell networking on/off||F8|
|Toggle code profiling||F9 (only with
|Toggle fullscreen mode||Alt-Enter|
|Toggle trackball mode||F6|
|Enter trackball mode temporarily (while key is pressed)||Delete|
|DPad center click||KEYPAD_5|
|Onion alpha increase/decrease||KEYPAD_MULTIPLY(*) / KEYPAD_DIVIDE(/)|
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