We’ve all been toying around with the experimental ART runtime which made its debut with Android 4.4 KitKat. From that point on the fate of Dalvik VM was sealed and as it happens to be the case, the latter will finally be replaced by ART on future versions of Android!
Two specific commits namely 98553 and 98618 were recently merged into the AOSP master branch, this pretty much indicates that Google is finally done polishing the ART bits and could possibly be readying it for the next major version of Android. The changelog speaks for itself:
Dalvik is dead, long live Dalvik! DO NOT MERGE croot cd libcore repo start dalvik-is-dead-long-live-dalvik . repo sync -c . git rm -r libdvm git add JavaLibrary.mk (after removing libdvm references, adding explict core-libart references) git add Docs.mk (after replacing references to libdvm with libart) git add benchmarks/Android.mk (after adding explict core-libart references) git add Android.mk (after removing dalvik-host target) git commit -a -m ‘Dalvik is dead, long live Dalvik! DO NOT MERGE’
Most developers have already updated their apps for ART but several titles are still not ready, some apps even may FC or perform poorly with ART enabled. Not to mention that ART isn’t yet supported by some OEM UI frameworks such as TouchWiz or the Sense UI. Things will undoubtedly change in the coming months and we’ll hopefully see more at Google I/O 2014 if Google ever decides to unveil it’s latest snack-themed Android version.