Simulating the Android Browser

Unlike the iOS simulator, the Android SDK provides an Android emulator. Emulation means to make one device act like another – in this case make the PC/Mac behave like an Android device – command for command. Simulation means to give the user the impression he is using the simulated device. Hence the emulator has a tendency to be slower. eHow gives a good explanation of the difference between the 2.

To simulate the Android browser, use the Android browser that comes with the Android SDK. This is available for Windows/Mac/Linux.

To get this set up:

  1. Download the Android SDK from Google’s Android site (requires Java)
  2. Open up a terminal – Terminal for Mac, Run “cmd” on Windows
  3. Navigate to the SDK folder via terminal
  4. Under [SDK]/tools, run “android” – you will see the “Android SDK and AVD Manager”
  5. Click on “Available Packages” and choose which versions of Android you want to install and install. The Android developer site has steps as well.
  6. Click on “Virtual Devices” and click on the “New” button. The “Create New Android Virtual Device (AVD)” will show up
  7. See the Android developer site for more information on AVD creation.
  8. Once the AVD is created, click on it on the AVD Manager and then “Start” and then “Launch”. The Android emulator will pop up.
  9. On the emulator, navigate to the Browser and test
Android SDK and AVD Manager

Android SDK and AVD Manager

Available Packages

Available Packages

Create New Android Virtual Device (AVD)

Create New Android Virtual Device (AVD)

Android emulator

Android emulator

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Filed under Mobile Web, QA, Testing

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