The Android developer community has released an Android L emulator image specifically for Intel’s x86 64-bit architecture. It will allow developers to build or optimize older apps for the upcoming Android L OS and its new 64-bit architecture. Moving to 64-bit increases the addressable memory space, allows a larger number of registers and new instructions sets for developers.
After announcing that Android L would support 64-bit hardware way back in June, Google has finally released a 64-bit Android L developer preview emulator image. Curiously, though, it’s a 64-bit image for 64-bit Intel chips (Atom/Bay Trail) and not ARM. With Nvidia’s 64-bit Tegra K1 supposedly just around the corner, but no tools for developers to actually create or prepare 64-bit ARMv8 apps, what exactly is going on? Android L — most likely Android Lollipop 4.5 or 5.0 — was originally unveiled at Google I/O in June. At the time, Google’s Sundar Pichai told us that Android L would support “64-bit CPU architectures.” Another Googler, David Burke, said “We’ve adapted and optimized the entire platform to take advantage of the new 64-bit architectures.”