Google’s new Android Things OS brings a more-practical approach to IoT
It seems Google and Microsoft decided to talk about the future of IoT at the same time. The difference with Google is that what started as Weave and Project Brillo a couple of months ago has now evolved into a new product called Android Things. This doesn’t mean that the Brillo and Weave are necessarily dead, as Android Things is a very interesting new approach.
So the idea behind Android Things as an OS is to make building code for smart appliances as easy as building a mobile application. To build code for these, you use ordinary developer tools like Android Studio and the SDK, and you also have access to Google Play Services and the Google Cloud Platform. There’s also a new device developer kit on Weave that helps you tap into basic hardware like lights, switches, thermostats, and then lets you connect these for commands from the Google Assistant. Android Things already works with Intel’s Edison, Raspberry Pi 3 and NXP’s Pico, so there’s already a back bone set for people to get started and develop with minimal effort.
It’s hard to tell how early we’ll be able to see products running as part of Android Things, but given the ease provided, it should only be a matter of time.