If you have used both an iPhone and an Android smartphone, you may have noticed one major difference. Software Update. Yes, every iPhone receives major software update as long as 3 to 4 years. And it is annoyingly slow if we consider Android. So that’s why Google has decided to implement the Project Treble which will be helpful in circulating the updates. So let us understand first what is Project Treble?
Suppose you have both Google Pixel and a Samsung/LG phone. Now it is very easy to tell why your Samsung or LG is receiving updates very slow as compared to your Pixel. Even if you know basic information about Android, you can tell that due to the UI implementation by those companies. Yes, you are right.
Now, what Project Treble will actually do is that it will completely differentiate the vendor implementation (UI implementation let us say to understand) from the core Android. First, you have to understand what is HAL (Hardware Abstraction Layer ) and its role in working on Android.
Hardware Abstraction Layer
The hardware abstraction layer or simply HAL enables OS to talk to the application to start its execution. Meaning is that OS talks to the hardware about running that particular application (ex. Camera). So in simple words, HAL separates the OS from the hardware. Suppose you want to run a third-party camera application from the Play Store. So HAL is designed such that it will make that application run.
There are now 60 divisions which will specify the interface between HAL and its users. These are named as HIDLs. And will make the Android framework be replaced without recompiling or building the HALs. Also, this will make it easier for the vendors to update the system as there will be no need of depending on the SoC makers for the update. Still, your Android smartphone needs to have supported hardware for the update.
What Is Not Project Treble?
While this project will help speed up the updates process, yet you should not get your hopes high. It will still depend on the manufacturer to push the updates. What project treble will do is just make the difference between vendor implementation by introducing vendor interface in the code and the core Android will be updated regardless of the vendor’s implementation. So the vendor still has to compile and run the core Android code before making update live. That means it would still take time for the updates, but less than now.
Some of the manufacturers opted out of supporting the Project Treble on the devices upgrading from Nougat to Oreo. But as far as Google’s saying, those devices will support Project Treble which will be going to come along Android Oreo out of the box.
Also, read: What is AMOLED Display