Google adds Bluetooth APIs and USB support to Android Things Developer Preview 3

To get Android Things prepped and polished for launch, Google recently opened up the Android Things Developer Preview in an effort to encourage developers to make apps and devices that work with its rebranded Internet of Things (IoT) platform.

The third iteration of the developer preview is available now and it brings with it a few new features for developers to tinker with, as well as helpful bug fixes. Google detailed the update on its Android Developers Blog:

Android Bluetooth APIsDP3 now includes support for all Android Bluetooth APIs in android.bluetooth and android.bluetooth.le, across all Android Things supported hardware. You can now write code that interacts with both Bluetooth classic and low energy (LE) devices just like a regular Android phone. Existing samples such as Bluetooth LE advertisements and scanning and Bluetooth LE GATT can be used unmodified on Android Things. We have also provided two new samples, Bluetooth LE GATT server and Bluetooth audio sink.USB Host supportAndroid version 3.1 and later supports USB Host, which allows a regular user space application to communicate with USB devices without root privileges or support needed from the Linux kernel. This functionality is now supported in Android Things, to enable interfacing with custom USB devices. Any existing code supporting USB Host will work on Android Things, and an extra sample USB Enumerator is available that demonstrates how to iterate over and print the interfaces and endpoints for each USB device.

Google asks that any developers who are working on the Android Things Developer Preview provide feedback as they're moving along. You can file bug reports or feature requests, or ask questions at Stack Overflow.

If you're interested in the Android Things preview for developers, you can learn more here. But if you're just waiting for it to arrive so you can use it in your own home, you'll have to hold tight. Hopefully, we'll hear more about the connected platform at Google I/O 2017.

Florence Ion

Florence Ion was formerly an editor and columnist at Android Central. She writes about Android-powered devices of all types and explores their usefulness in her everyday life. You can follow her on Twitter or watch her Tuesday nights on All About Android.