Google testing 'Andromeda' Android-Chrome OS hybrid on Nexus 9

Google testing 'Andromeda' Android-Chrome OS hybrid on Nexus 9
Google's upcoming media event on October 4th is expected to play host to the HTC-made Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones. Interesting developments over this weekend have the blogopshere touting the Big G's fabled Android-Chrome OS hybrid, codenamed 'Andromeda', among the announcements. To accompany the whispers, some cold, hard evidence seems to corroborate the idea that Andromeda is in fact a Thing. 

Spotted by the folks at 9to5Google, Andromeda references exist within the Android 7.0 Nougat AOSP and apparently, the also HTC-manufactured Nexus 9 has been utilized in testing the OS. 

A file named within the Nougat AOSP called '' is said to be a utility for testing graphics performance. By the sound of things, it's not dissimilar to the Windows Experience Index that assigns a score to a device based on key internal hardware. In this instance, it seems Andromeda requires a device with a score of 8.0 and above; by comparison, Android's apparent minimum threshold is 4.0. 

The Google Nexus 9 tablet supposedly scores 8.8 as referenced in 9to5Google's treasure hunt. As a refresher, the slate packs NVIDIA's Tegra K1 Kepler graphics; a strong, albeit ageing GPU that rolled out well over two years ago. With the Nexus 9 seemingly just scraping over the line, it's somewhat unlikely that Andromeda will be rolled out to the device at consumer level. 

Indeed, with references to 'free-form window management' also found within the code, it's probable that hybrid devices may be among the eventual beneficiaries, as opposed to everyday slabs such as the Nexus 9. 

Whatever the case, Google's event is just around the corner, and hopefully, we'll learn more about this Andromeda project over the coming week.

No images

source: 9to5Google

Related phones

Nexus 9
  • Display 8.9" 1536 x 2048 pixels
  • Camera 8 MP / 1.6 MP front
  • Processor NVIDIA Tegra K1, Dual-core, 2300 MHz
  • Storage 32 GB
  • Battery 6700 mAh



1. vijay.alapati

Posts: 181; Member since: Jan 08, 2015

why not test it on Pixel tablet which is more powerful ?

2. UglyFrank

Posts: 2194; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

They have to get use out of the older stock in their warehouses

4. NarutoKage14

Posts: 1343; Member since: Aug 31, 2016

This seems to be intended for hybrid tablet/laptop devices.

11. vincelongman

Posts: 5746; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Probably wanted to test on the Denver K1 since its got a very very different microarchitecture, also had issues with performance They are also testing it on the Nexus 6, not sure why PA didn't mention it From the source PA linked

3. Settings

Posts: 2943; Member since: Jul 02, 2014

So the mobile-desktop OS hybrid is now a thing. Cant wait for Apple's version of it. Continuum is on its right path, with few (more like many) bugs regarding its implementation.

7. MrElectrifyer

Posts: 3960; Member since: Oct 21, 2014

"the mobile-desktop OS hybrid is now a thing" Lol, it's been a thing since Windows 8 was made a available. Windows 8 perfectly fits the conventional definitions of mobile OS ( ) and desktop OS ( ), just people have a hard time believing it's also a mobile OS given how extremely versatile it is.

13. UnlimitedSkye03

Posts: 300; Member since: Apr 27, 2012

Windows on phones is quite different, it doesn't run exactly the same as the Windows for desktops, tablets, convertibles and hybrids, even the ones used in continuum. It's still not the full blown Windows for Desktop that we know. If google will be successful with this Andromeda project, this will be the next big thing in computing.

14. MrElectrifyer

Posts: 3960; Member since: Oct 21, 2014

I'm not talking about the bastardized Windows on current Smartphones, I'm talking about the full Windows that was designed to run on my Surface Pro 2 (a mobile device, Tablet). The same one that was going to run on the SyncPhone ( ), and the same one I'm expecting on the true Surface Phone with added Continuum UI for the Smartphone PC form-factor...I agree it's the next big thing in computing; Smartphones becoming full stand-alone PCs instead of merely companion devices.

15. Settings

Posts: 2943; Member since: Jul 02, 2014

It's now a thing when someone jumps in a boat same as yours, wherein the past you're only the one and less significant. And you forgot the other bastard OS, the RT.

5. MaryPoopins

Posts: 324; Member since: Jan 15, 2015

Man, the Nexus9 was such a nice tablet. Bit big for me tho. If they could have put that hardware into their Nexus7 line, I'd have been a happy bunny !!

16. Tondern

Posts: 164; Member since: Feb 23, 2015

You'll get a new Nexus 7 soon enough. Maybe already on oct 4.

6. Fona13A unregistered

Interesting. I hope to see tests like this run on their Pixel C series.

8. ThePython

Posts: 902; Member since: May 08, 2013

The Nexus 9 is a peculiar choice... Pixel C would be better served by this.

17. Commentator

Posts: 3723; Member since: Aug 16, 2011

I'm sure it will be, but this is just for testing purposes. Could be that Google's been working on Andromeda since the Nexus 9 and 6 were released, and thus they're already optimized for it, while the Pixel C isn't quite ready for testing yet.

18. ThePython

Posts: 902; Member since: May 08, 2013

I'd get a Pixel C, it seems like a really good device. Watching Netflix/YouTube must be amazing with that screen.

20. Commentator

Posts: 3723; Member since: Aug 16, 2011

Nvidia needs to prove they can reliably power a (non-Shield) Android tablet before I consider another one. They've already burned me a couple times with inconsistent performance on my Nexus 9 and Transformer 300, and earlier reviews of the Pixel C indicated these problems continued. Not sure if patches have fixed it since, but at any rate I'm hoping the next Pixel steers clear of Nvidia.

9. Ruturaj

Posts: 1484; Member since: Oct 16, 2014

I think hybrid will be good thing to android, you can either develop native chrome apps or android apps. Chrome apps will be much faster.

10. MrElectrifyer

Posts: 3960; Member since: Oct 21, 2014

True, that could be the gateway of apps running natively on Android devices instead of in a virtual machine...

12. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

Why is chrome apps much faster? Android the developer has a choice of Java, C and C++. Google official support those programming language with their SDK/ NDK Not sure about chrome.

19. Back_from_beyond

Posts: 1462; Member since: Sep 04, 2015

I'm more curious about the devices intended for Andromeda and what the price range will be. Hope they'll make a proper Surface Pro competitor

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