With the raw horsepower behind some Android phones, Google’s OS can be pretty damn quick. But it would seem that that’s not enough for the boffins behind the Linaro open source software project, who’ve tampered with Android to make a version of it that runs up to 100% faster than Android 4.0.
Linaro specialise in optimising anything running on Linux kernels, which Android does. What exactly they did to achieve this is very much in the realm of tech wizardry, but it fundamentally involved optimisations to the Cortex-A9 architecture.
CNX Software have given a more detailed (and confusing) description of the process, saying that the massive performance boost was achieved ‘using gcc 4.7 and building Android ICS without -fno-strict-aliasing and with -O3 compiler flag.’ Any coders out there capable of translating that to English?
The benchmark scores in the video below are indeed hugely impressive, showing that Google aren’t anywhere close to fully utilising the power of the CPUs powering Android. It’s unclear whether Google will take heed of Linaro’s work, but third-party software, such as CyanogeMod, is already starting to make use of whatever magic Linaro performed to make Android run faster.