Now Xamarin has worked out a way of porting C# to Android.
According to the company blog, the C# version is a higher performance, low-battery consuming alternative to Java.
Based around a Mono platform the system is an open source implementation of the .NET framework.
It allows developers to write their code using C# while running on top of the Java-powered operating system, and then share the code with iOS and Windows Phone.
The advantage for Google is that Microsoft submitted C# and the .NET VM for standardisation to ECMA and saw those standards graduated all the way to ISO strong patent commitments. The .NET framework is also covered by Microsoft’s legally binding community promise, so Google would not have to get an expensive licence.
Apparently the porting was hatched out after a day of Kayaking.
The team decided to translate Android’s source code to C#.
They thought that if they could create an Android phone completely free of Java, it could also be free of the limitations of the Dalvik VM.
The blog said that the group set up a project called XobotOS and now has most of Android’s layouts and controls entirely in C#.
They used a tool called Sharpen which is a Java-to-C# translation tool the team adapted.
If Google wants to get Oracle’s hooks out of Android it could do a lot worse. It might even reduce its patent dependence on Microsoft too.