It’s expected that avid Android fans are very likely to purchase multiple devices every couple of years. Some may only be looking to get one device a year, while others are willing to shell out more money for three different devices. It all depends on the users preference when it comes down to it. Still, imagine running your very own network test, using 300,000 different Android devices all at the same time. 300,000 Android devices? Sounds crazy right? Yeah, well, it’s now entirely a reality with what they call “project Megadroid.”
In a sense, the name of this project fits the description perfectly. David Fritz, who is an electrical engineer at the Sandria National Laboratories, described that the project will be consisting of nearly 300,000 virtual machines that are running the x86 versions of Android 4.0 to test usage in some various network disruptions. Natural disasters, protocol glitches, terrorist attacks, and so on, is going to be tested and researched with the Megadroid project. The goal of this entire project is to understand and hopefully potentially limit the damaged caused by these various situations.
To try and create a realistic environment for this test, Fritz has propposed the idea to emulator features like Wi-Fi, GPS and Bluetooth as a subject to testing vulnerabilities to malicious attacks, within the Android operating system itself. Here’s what the engineer had to say:
“I imagine somebody like Foursquare would have liked to have a city’s worth of Android devices sitting in the room next door to test their platform on before releasing it into the wild. There might be some emergent behavior that you only see at scale.”
David Fritz believes that this is very important to study social networking, and then explain how very easy it is to obtain all of the data. However, the head researcher isn’t a fool, succeeding in previous projects such as Megatix and Megawin, to test the various Windows and Linux software issues. Of course, large tests like this often require a rather large budget. The 300,000 Android x86 virtual machines are going to cost a whopping $500,000. So, hopefully this new behemoth of Android 4.0 testing, the researchers will reveal a lot of the very important flaws to fix before an actual attack occurs on these devices. I would highly suggest taking a look at the video embedded below. It is full of information on what this test is all about, and while it isn’t long, it should easily bring you up to speed with what is going on.
Do you think that these tests should happen more often than just once? The Android platform is always being updated, so there is bound to be some seriously annoying bugs that the programmers don’t know about. With that said, maybe Google should start conducting their own tests like this. Surely their own in-house tests would prove to be a bit more accurate than a third party test.
Do you think this test will prove to be good? Do you think that Google should have their own in-house tests?
source: talk android