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Introduction to Android Things

Peripheral IO, learning I²C Output with an Alphanumeric Character Display

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This lesson is going to show you how to interact with the Android Things Peripheral IO APIs to understand and communicate with an I2C output peripheral. In this case a 4-digit Alphanumeric Character Display. Using this peripheral to code an IoT android app.

We will learn about the Inter Integrated Circuit protocol and how to read and use the documentation to help us code a I2C peripheral. We will discuss the I2C API’s, how to deal with IOExceptions in your app, how to manage hardware resources and how Android Things works with the Android lifecycle. Coding an android application to communicate with the the Rainbow Hat 4-digit Alphanumeric Character Display and read the associated HT16K33 datasheet to countdown from 1000 on the display.

When complete, you will have learnt the basics of I2C output peripheral communication and also written an Android Things application that will be able to show you a numeric countdown when it is ran.

Hardware needed.

For this lesson you will require:

  • A Raspberry Pi 3 flashed with Android Things
  • A Rainbow Hat peripheral

If you need to buy the Raspberry Pi to start with Android Things I would recommend this kit. It contains:

  • Raspberry Pi 3
  • Rainbow HAT
  • Pibow Coupé for Android Things
  • 2.5A official Raspberry Pi worldwide power supply
  • 8GB microSD card


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