One of the most requested feature for the emulator was support for sensor. Developers were apparently asking their managers for travel budget to go to Hawaii/Europe so that they could test out their location based apps :). Today at MIX11 we announced that GPS sensor support for the emulator will be shipped in the next version of the tools. Some of the features that will be present are
- Developers would be able to launch a new tool window from the emulator and in that click on locations on maps to feed that location to apps running in the emulator. This covers building apps like Yelp, Weather app on the device that needs static location information
- Have pre-recorded location and able to play that out so that new locations are sent to the phone at a preset rate. This covers building apps like sports tracker, navigation apps.
- The app running in the emulator will not need to change in anyway or even know that the data is simulated. It will come over the usual sensor channels and even apps like the built in bing maps app will pick up the fed in data.
Here’s a short video which I quickly took from the laptop of our PM. Being away from family in Las Vegas was getting me down so he took me to Seattle in a second (or rather simulated it).
Direct link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wt0DdiYqdkk
Another new sensor support is the accelerometer. So no more picking up the PC monitor running the emulator and rotating it to see if the emulator gets the movements. There’s going to be a new tool window using which the developer can feed in motion to the apps running in the emulator. Also some pre-canned motions like shake will be present. Here’s another video of that
Direct link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gc1kuXj7eCE