ARM Unveils Free Toolkit To Boost Android App Development

The ARM Development Studio 5 Community Edition or "DS-5 CE" toolkit, which is essentially a condensed, free version of its current Development Studio offering, is said to run apps up to four times faster than traditional Java code. The kit also complements standard SDK and NDK Android development kits by offering tools optimized for energy-efficiency.

"With over half a million apps on the Android market today, developers need to deliver an outstanding user experience to succeed commercially," said John Cornish, executive vice president and general manager, system design division, ARM, in a statement. "ARM DS-5 Community Edition offers developers an easy to use environment for debugging and optimizing C/C++ code. This allows them to take full advantage of ARM processor technology using native code to deliver the performance and functionality that consumers demand."

DS-5 CE is said by ARM to ease common developer pain points by providing an integrated graphical debugger for NDK-generated code, along with visibility into advanced processor information, including ARM NEON Single Instruction Multiple Data (SIMD) registers. The kit also allows for the development of Java and C/C++ code within the same Eclipse integrated development environment.

What’s more, DS-5 CE includes a tailored version of ARM Streamline Performance Analyzer so developers can capture system performance specs, pinpoint "hotspots" within their code, and identify potential causes, ARM said.

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Intel made a similar move earlier this month with the launch of its $100 million Intel Capital AppUp Fund. The fund is intended to boost investments made in software companies developing apps and digital content for mobile devices and PCs based on Intel architecture.

ARM’s DS-5 CE is available for download free-of-charge for use by individuals and organizations with an annual revenue of $100,000 or less, and up to 10 employees.