Skip to Main Content
Android is thought as being yet another operating system! In reality, it is a software platform rather than just an OS; in practical terms, it is an application framework on top of Linux, which facilitates its rapid deployment in many domains. Android was originally designed to be used in mobile computing applications, from handsets to tablets to e-books. But developers are also looking to employ Android in a variety of other embedded systems that have traditionally relied on the benefits of true real-time operating systems performance, boot-up time, real-time response, reliability, and no hidden maintenance costs. In this paper, we present a preliminary conclusion about Android's real-time behavior and performance based on experimental measurements such as thread switch latency, interrupt latency, sustained interrupt frequency, and finally the behavior of mutex and semaphore. All these measurements were done on the same ARM platform (Beagleboard-XM). Our testing results showed that Android in its current state cannot be qualified to be used in real-time environments.