Today i purchased the RealVNC VNC Viewer for Android based devices, in order to test the compatibility with my MobileVNC Windows CE based VNC server. RealVNC takes €7.55 for this piece of software, which is quite high compared to the typical prices within the Google Play marketplace. Despite my initial fears, the RealVNC VNC Viewer successfully connected to my Windows CE 4.1 embedded thin client device without any complains and i was able to remote control my embedded device by using the touchscreen of my Samsung Nexus Android smartphone. The movement of the remote mouse pointer is shown by a small pixel on the smartphone, according to the fact that every touch is converted to a relative mouse movement, which works really good. See some screenshot of my experiment with RealVNC Android Viewer App in combination with our MobileVNC server and a HP t5000 Windows CE 4.1 thin client.
Gumstix pioneered the concept of an extremely small computer-on-module already in 2003 with a full implementation of Linux™. Today, they offer a multitude of different systems-on-a-chip in a really small size. Their systems come in the size of a stripe of gum, which is perfect for controlling an air-vehicle, such as a quadcopter or a air drone, like this plane. Gumstix new product line offers systems called IronSTORM, FireSTORM, AirSTORM, EarthSTORM and SandSTORM, that specify the different specific application areas for which these systems are designed for. The Gumstix systems come at a price between 199$ and 299$. The different systems offer 1Ghz ARM® Cortex™-A8 Core CPU with around 512MB RAM and WLAN as well as Bluetooth connectivity. A multitude of hirose boards offer plenty of sensoric extensions, that are perfect for building robots and drones.
Android industrial and embedded devices get some sort of a drive at the moment. So far we saw hundreds of different Android-based smartphone and handheld devices on the market, but now more and more network pcs and industrial Android devices are published. After the Raspberry PI was published by a team of embedded computing enthusiasts, for a price below 50 bucks, its now time for some Android based mini devices to take over the market. One example for these new Android based devices is this Chinese-made MK802 device, which is a full fletched mini PC at the size of a USB flash drive. It contains a 1.5Ghz Allwinner prozessor, 512MB of RAM and 4GB of onboard flash storage. You can get at these internals via two USB ports (which can also power the device,) and pump the result out to a display via HDMI. The 4GB of memory can be expanded via a microSD slot. You can buy this handy little device for around 100$.