Exclusive: Google is testing a low-latency gaming mode on its Android TV dongle, possibly for Stadia support

Exclusive: Google is testing a low-latency gaming mode on its Android TV dongle, possibly for Stadia support

Earlier this month, we printed renders from a marketing video we received of Google’s upcoming Android TV dongle, code-named “Sabrina.” We received the selling video from a pre-delivery firmware draw. What we didn’t in the starting build realize, even if, is that the firmware furthermore comprises evidence of upcoming hardware features.

When you’re looking to discover a recap of what we know to this point relating to the kind and application journey of Google’s Android TV dongle, then I advocate either reading my preliminary coverage or looking at the following YouTube video from XDA’s TK Bay.

XDA Known Developer deadman96385, who shared the pre-delivery firmware draw for “Sabrina” with us, stumbled on one of the vital vital Android TV dongle’s hardware specifications by analyzing the “Tool Tree Supply” (DTS) recordsdata contained internal the boot image. The recordsdata specify which hardware features of the SoC platform to enable when booting.

Since the principle DTS file is amazingly long (~4,200 traces) and refined to parse with out data of Linux kernel pattern for Android, I received’t be posting the beefy file listed here. At the very high of the file, even if, we are able to gape two key miniature print of the “Sabrina” Android TV dongle draw: It has 2GB of RAM (sml_sabrina_2g) and is powered by the Amlogic S905X2 draw-on-chip (the reference to g12a beneath and just a few references to the code-title “meson” no longer confirmed beneath verify this).

The Amlogic S905X2 is fabricated on a 12nm manufacturing activity and has a quad-core CPU with 4 ARM Cortex-A53 CPU cores clocked at as a lot as 1.8GHz. The CPU is joined by an ARM Mali-G31 MP2 GPU. The SoC helps video decoding for 4Kp75 10-bit H.265 inform, video output at as a lot as 4Kp60 over HDMI 2.1, HDR video playback with HDR10, HLG, and Dolby Imaginative and prescient, and extra.

The S905X2 is a in point of fact current SoC for Android TV gadgets, so we’re no longer bowled over to eye it energy Google’s Android TV dongle. Right here’s a partial list of certified Android TV gadgets with this SoC platform, thanks to our buddy @AndroidTV_Rumor:

Other Android TV gadgets with the Amlogic S905X2 SoC

Pay TV Provider / Imprint Model Year Nation Producer Code Name SoC
Amplia Amplia TV 2020 Trinidad & Tobago Askey STI6160d327 Amlogic S905X2
Antel Vera TV 2020 Uruguay SDMC DV8547 Amlogic S905X2
Canal+ Polska Android TV Dekoder 2020 Poland Skyworth HY4001 / HY40A Amlogic S905X2
Digiturk AirTV IP Box 2019 Turkey SDMC DV8535 Amlogic S905X2
Dish TV SmartVU + 2020 Fresh Zealand SDMC A7070 Amlogic S905X2
EMCALI   2020 Colombia Coship N9119M Amlogic S905X2
Mecool KM3 2019 China Videostrong KM3 Amlogic S905X2
Mecool KM9 Professional 2019 China Videostrong KM9PRO Amlogic S905X2
Midco eSTREAM 4K 2020 USA SEI Robotics   Amlogic S905X2
MINIX NEO T5 2019   SDMC DV8553 Amlogic S905X2
MNC Play PLAYBOX 2020 Indonesia Skyworth HP40A / CYBORG001 Amlogic S905X2
Oi Streaming Box 2019 Brazil SEI Robotics ETRI02 (SEI531O) Amlogic S905X2
RockTek G1 2020 Taiwan Elebao RT-G1 Amlogic S905X2
SK Broadband B tv Tidy 3 2019 South Korea Foxconn BFX-AT100 (BFX-UH200) Amlogic S905X2
TADAAM (Telenet) TADAAM Box 2020 Belgium Askey STI6160 Amlogic S905X2
TCC   2020 Uruguay     Amlogic S905X2
Telecom Argentina FlowBox-F1 2020 Argentina Skyworth HP40A2 Amlogic S905X2
Telekom Malaysia unifi TV Plus Box 2020 Malaysia Skyworth HP40A3 Amlogic S905X2
Telkom Indonesia IndiHome 2020 Indonesia ZTE B860HV5_Telkom Amlogic S905X2
Transvision Xstream Box 2020 Indonesia SEI Robotics SEI500TR Amlogic S905X2
United Neighborhood EON Tidy Box (OTT) 2019 Serbia, Slovenia, Montenegro, Bosnia SDMC SDOTT0202 / DV8519 Amlogic S905X2
Vectra 4K Box 2020 Poland SDMC DV8519-Vectra Amlogic S905X2
Verizon Movement TV 2019 USA WNC JS8V Amlogic S905X2
Yes Yes+ 2020 Israel SEI Robotics SEI500Y Amlogic S905X2
Youfone Android TV 2020 Netherlands SDMC DV8519 / Amigo7xYUF Amlogic S905X2

Other hardware features of Google’s Android TV dongle hinted at in the DTS file include Broadcom’s BCM43569 combo chip for Wi-Fi/Bluetooth and Cadence’s Tensilica HiFi 4 DSP.

XDA Known Developer deadman96385 furthermore stumbled on one other provocative features of Google’s Android TV dongle in a pre-installed draw utility referred to as “SabrinaService.” Within this utility are references to “ALLM,” which stands for “Auto Low Latency Mode.” That is a aim of the HDMI 2.1 specification that allows the draw to send a signal to the connected TV to in discovering it to disable any put up-processing features which might add latency to showing the video. Barely a pair of televisions will market this aim as a “Sport Mode” because it’s Most mighty for reducing creep when gaming. To make sure, the consumer’s television will delight in to delight in a low-latency “Sport Mode” for this to work, but ALLM make stronger means that Google’s Android TV dongle shall be ready to toggle this mode automatically.

I wouldn’t be bowled over if this aim is being added to make stronger Google’s cloud game streaming carrier, Stadia. We first reported that Google planned to lift Stadia make stronger to Android TV in 2020, so it would construct sense for Google’s delight in Android TV dongle to be the principle draw to make stronger the firm’s delight in cloud game streaming carrier. The latest update to Stadia permits experimental Android TV make stronger, however the setup activity in all equity janky for the time being. Very few modern Android TV house-high containers or dongles make stronger Auto Low Latency Mode, in step with our buddy @AndroidTV_Rumor. Sony’s 2018 and Philips’ 2020 televisions with built-in Android TV make stronger low-latency gaming modes, even if.

But every other provocative class in SabrinaService referred to as “GlobalKeyReceiver” hints at the a ways-off having a Netflix button, YouTube button, and a microphone.

There’s code that implies long-press action make stronger on one of many keys, which will likely be for the mysterious button with the star symbol that showed up in the render of the a ways-off we printed earlier.

Google Android TV dongle remote

Which that you just would be able to think a ways-off

But every other class in SabrinaService unearths that the devoted a ways-off likely connects to the draw via Bluetooth, which is unsurprising. (DFU in the beneath screenshot refers to “Tool Firmware Update.”)

We level-headed don’t know when Google’s Android TV dongle will delivery or what this might well also furthermore be priced at, but we’re positively concerned about it coming to market. We’re long slack for additional opponents in the consumer Android TV house which is currently propped up by Xiaomi and NVIDIA.

Due to the PNF Tool for providing us a license to use JEB Decompiler, a legitimate-grade reverse engineering instrument for Android capabilities.

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