Just Posted: BlackBerry Tools for Android Development 2.0 Beta

Android Tooling Update

With the BlackBerry Runtime for Android apps recently updated to support Jelly Bean 4.2.2 and hardware acceleration, it’s time that the BlackBerry 10 development tools for Android developers joined the update party!

Today we are pleased to announce the beta release of the BlackBerry Tools for Android Development 2.0. The updated set of development tools will continue to allow Android developers to quickly and easily repackage their existing Android apps for BlackBerry 10 via the familiar eclipse ADT plugin and command-line SDK. However, to augment that offering, the 2.0 beta has been updated to include support for repackaging your APK file via a GUI-based tool, and ABD-proxy support for any Android IDE of your choice.

BlackBerry Plugin for ADT

Since most Android developers tend to choose eclipse partnered with the ADT plugin as their IDE of choice, a BlackBerry 10 specific plugin for ADT is supported which then allows developers to target two different mobile ecosystems within the same codebase. Our BlackBerry plugin for ADT simply adds eclipse menu-item entries to build/test/debug Android apps on BlackBerry 10, alongside your existing Android devices. To start using the 2.0 beta, make sure to point your update site to:

Android Tooling Update_1

BlackBerry Plugin for ADT

Command-line/GUI SDK

bin>blackberry-apkpackager –gui

Android Tooling Update_2

Command-line SDK – BlackBerry APK Packager

The updated command-line SDK will continue to provide developers an environment to quickly repackage and sign APK files via the blackberry-apkpackager (formerly apk2bar) and blackberry-signer arguments. In addition, it also includes a GUI-based option to repackage/sign/deploy apps on the fly.

bin>blackberry-signer -gui

Android Tooling Update_3

Command-line SDK – BlackBerry Signer

With the GUI option introduced in this beta release, the ability to configure signing and sign release BAR files has never been so simple.

bin>blackberry-adbproxy -gui

Android Tooling Update_4

Command-line SDK – BlackBerry ADB Proxy Manager

Included within the command-line SDK is the addition of the blackberry-adbproxy command, which allows developers to connect their BlackBerry 10 smartphone or simulator over IP address to any development environment of choice. Doing so allows any IDE to run and debug Android apps on a BlackBerry 10 device/simulator as though it is an Android device itself. Further support for specific Android IDEs, in addition to the existing BlackBerry plugin for ADT, is currently being considered as well.

So what are you waiting for? The new BlackBerry Tools for Android Developers 2.0 beta is available for download now. Head on over to our Android Tooling page to grab the latest command-line tools download or get started with the Eclipse Plugin. Also, don’t forget to sign-up and download your signing key. Feel free to experiment with the tools and let us know what else you would like to see supported within the BlackBerry Runtime for Android apps next as an Android developer.

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