Python 2.7.13 running on Android

I stumbled across a very interesting project called LBRY a while back, which I can describe as bitcoin meets bittorrent, Youtube and Soundcloud and and they all have a baby. The app includes a daemon developed in Python which is used to communicate with the LBRY network, and the goal was to get this running on Android one way or another. Prior to this, I had absolutely no idea there was a way to actually get Python on Android. I mean, it was theoretically possible since Android is based on Linux, but I had just never come across anything related to that.

Then I found out about Kivy, and the python for android (p4a) project. P4A makes use of a mechanism called recipes which define how certain Python modules or components should be built for a platform. There was a joint effort to get the daemon to compile and actually run on Android, which was eventually successful, but the Python version for the current p4a master branch is 2.7.2. I wasn’t exactly satisfied with this, so I went down the rabbit hole of getting Python 2.7.13 up and running. This took quite some time and effort, but I managed to get it to work. I found it to be quite frustrating at times, but it was also very exciting and I had a feeling of satisfaction after I had finished.

Funny story, after figuring it all out, I discovered there were pull requests created in Github for the p4a project related to building with Python version 2.7.11. If I had found them earlier, my life would have been a whole lot easier! Either way, it was a good learning experience and I’m glad to say it works pretty well.

You can find the LBRY Android project on Github if you’re interested in the recipes for building and running Python 2.7.13.