Overview of FlashAir App Development for Android

Latest update: July 2013

Prior Knowledge Required

Communication with the FlashAir is done via CGI commands using HTTP communication. Therefore, you only need to understand the behavior of CGI commands and how to communicate via HTTP in order to create simple applications.

In this tutorial, we will make basic sample applications and will describe the behavior of each CGI command used.

After completing the tutorial, you will be prepared to make Android Apps for your FlashAir Device. App development and unique applications of the FlashAir are highly encouraged!


1. Set Up Development Environment for Android

To develop Android apps, you will need the Android SDK provided by Google. In addition, if you want to publish your app in an app store such as Google Play, you will need to register with that store first.

The Android SDK can be downloaded from here , more Android development information can be found at the Android Developers page , and information about distributing your app through the Google Play Store can be found on the Android Distribution page .

2. Getting FlashAir

In order to test your app, you will need to acquire a FlashAir device. The Toshiba FlashAir is available both online and in electronics stores.

3. Supplemental Information

Using Station Mode
By default, the FlashAir works as a Wireless LAN Access Point (Infrastructure Mode). This means that while your machine is connected to the FlashAir, you won't be able to access Internet via Wireless LAN. However, if you have another Wireless LAN Access Point, FlashAir can work as a Wireless LAN Client (Station Mode). If you connect the FlashAir to a common Wireless LAN Access Point with your development environment, you can access both the FlashAir and Internet simultaneously. Please refer to Advanced Tutorial #1: Station Mode for more details.
Longer Timeout
FlashAir stop its Wireless LAN functionality to save the power consumption if no communication through Wireless LAN for some while. It is usual case in development phase. You can change the timeout length to stop Wireless LAN.

Please refer to CONFIG Reference: Set connection time-out period for more details.

Creating an Android Project

In this section, we will show you how to make a new project, which is the necessary first step in Android App development. This tutorial assumes that you are using Eclipse as your IDE of choice with the Android SDK.

1. Create a new project

Launch Eclipse. A Workspace Launcher window will appear asking you to set your desired workspace. If an ADT welcome window appears, select "new"; this should open an Eclipse window.

Select "File" → "New" → "Android Application Project" from the Eclipse toolbar.

If you don't find "Android Application Project" in the drop down menu, click "Other..." to display the hidden options.

2. Configure the Project

We will show you the configuration we use in the tutorials, which will ensure that your sample applications are consistent with our examples. Ultimately, you can configure your project however you want.

This image shows the first configuration window

For "Application Name" and "Project Name", we use "FlashAirTutorial" followed by the tutorial number (ex. "01"). We use "com.fixstars.flashair.tutorial" as the Package Name. Other configurations have been kept at their default values.

This image shows the second configuration window

Use default values.

This image shows the icon configuration window

Configure icons. Use default values.

This image shows the activity configuration window

Select "Blank Activity" for Activity type.

This image shows the second activity configuration window

Configure the name of the Activity, etc. Use default values. Click "Finish" to generate source code for a basic Android app.

All subsequent tutorials will start from this state.