Search results for: android

Real-Time Radio Spectrum Map Database Demo with RTL-SDR and Android

Over on YouTube Dr. Diep N. Nguyen has posted a video showing work done to create a Real Time spectrum database by his team at University of Technology Sydney. The project involves the use of multiple RTL-SDR dongles and Android mobile devices to monitor the spectrum and make it accessible to requestors in real time. They write:

In view of the escalating demand for higher mobile data (from IoT, industry 4.0 applications), there is a growing world-wide interest to improve the radio spectrum utilization. Effective management of the wireless spectrum requires knowledge of the available bandwidth at any given time and location, which necessitates expensive recording equipment and labour cost at various locations. A number of countries, including the USA, are opening up TV and radar bands for sharing with other applications. Google has taken the lead by opening its spectrum database for TV whitespaces. Our solution goes beyond the state-of-the-art Google spectrum database by providing the world’s first real-time radio spectrum database.

Radio Spectrum Database at UTS
The UTS’s Global Big Data Technologies Centre team has developed advanced sensing capability to deliver a low-cost, yet more robust radio spectrum database. By leveraging big data science, edge computing power, crowdsourcing, and low-cost SDR (software defined radio) adaptors, a real-time snapshot of the wireless spectrum can be recorded on any Android device. The spectrum data is aggregated and visualize onto a web dashboard, allowing industry stakeholders and regulators to better facilitate dynamic radio spectrum monitoring and sharing.

Highlights:

• World’s first real-time spectrum database
• Fast deployment and can cover a wide range of frequency
• Provide spectrum on-demand to IoT, industry 4.0 applications
• Rich datasets from millions of mobile users across various locations
• 24/7 cost-effective and real-time radio spectrum monitoring system
• Economical: $20 RTL-SDR adaptors and labor-free versus costly sensing equipment
• Scalable: Cloud deployment allows infrastructure to be scaled as user base grows (millions of users)
• Easy to use and install via Android Play Store
• User-friendly interface with Google Map embedded system

In the past we've seen somewhat similar projects with Electrosense, and the 'BigWhoop' project.

Real-time Radio Spectrum Map Database Demo

Is the Titus II Portable Android Tablet Shortwave SDR Close to Release?

The PatronX Titus II SDR is something we've been posting about several times since 2016, but in the end it was never released and assumed to be vaporware. However, we found that the website for the Titus II SDR was updated only a few weeks ago, and pricing details have been added advertising $120 and $150 for two versions of the product. But on the new website there is no store, just an email link to contact sales for ordering information. We contacted that email two weeks ago for more information but have not received a reply back yet.

The PantronX Titus II was advertised to be a portable Android tablet based SDR that would feature a 100 kHz - 2 GHz tuning range, and software that focuses on HF digital DRM decoding, as well as DAB on VHF. Computer rendered images show the tablet housed in a portable carry enclosure with two speakers. Their new website writes:

The design of rTablet / rTab defined radio receiver started in 2014. It soon became evident that electronic products available on the market could not be modified to incorporate the advanced features requested by potential buyers. This initiated the process of the innovative design of the Titus SDR (Software Defined Radio) unit. The engineering team started with a general purpose computer unit and embedding it in a broadband radio receiver module.

All types of applications, including RF software, could be installed. For example, DRM capabilities could be added as DRM is an open source. Dream Linux app was converted to run under Android mobile operating system.

The Titus rTablet / rTab being introduced to the market, is a low cost, high performance platform with many RF and PC factory installed applications.

Key feature of rTablet / rTab is the compatibility with analog (SW, AM, FM) and digital standards (DRM, DRM+, DAB, DAB+, HD). Consequently the market of rTablet / rTab is global.

The updated website with pricing and an ordering email makes us think that it might be finally on the way, but the lack of email reply is concerning. If anyone has any further information about the rTab/Titus II please be sure to share with us in the comments!

Titus II SDR updated website
Titus II Specs

Simple FM Radio and Airband RTL-SDR Android Applications

On the Google Play store developer Knowle Consultants have recently released a new free application called "FM Radio (RTL-SDR)". This is a simple app that allows you to use a connected or remotely networked RTL-SDR to tune into preset broadcast FM stations. People wishing to use an Android enabled head unit in their car may be interested in the app as it makes tuning into broadcast FM stations easy just like it is on a standard radio.

They also have a similar app called "Airband Radio (RTL-SDR)" which provides a similar simple interface for tuning into airband presets.

Knowles Consultants simple Android RTL-SDR FM and Airband Receiver Apps

Dump1090 now Available as an Android App

The company ebcTech who makes AIS Share for Android has recently come out with a new app which is an Android App version of Dump1090. Dump1090 is a popular command line based ADS-B decoder for RTL-SDR dongles which allows you to receive and plot the locations of nearby aircraft on a map.

The app directly accesses the RTL-SDR via a USB OTG connection and provides a list of aircraft with planespotters.net image lookup, and a Google map display. The app is free however there is a message limit on received aircraft which can be unlocked via a low cost in-app purchase.

The author also wrote in and wanted to make a note about a special feature "In the app you can add Airport layers – This consist now 4480 Airports – most of them with corresponding homepage address / or Wikipedia link."

Dump1090 Android App

Decoding NOAA on an Debian Chrooted Android Smartphone

Over on Reddit Ian Grody (u/DutchOfBurdock) has posted about his success in using a modded Android smartphone to run an RTL-SDR Blog V3 and NOAA decoder software all within the phone itself.

In the past we posted about Ian's work in getting rtl_power scans to work in conjunction with the Tasker app, in order to generate automated frequency scans on his phone on the go. His more recent work from the past year includes showing us how it's possible to install Debian chroot on an Android phone, and run Linux software like GQRX, GNU Radio, DSD, rtl_433, multimon-ng and dump1090 directly on the phone with an RTL-SDR.

His latest Reddit post shows that the NOAA-APT decoder also runs well on the Debian chroot, leading to a truly portable NOAA decoding setup. He notes that he is now working on the possibility of Meteor M2 decoding on the phone.

Below is his video from last year demonstrating SDR GQRX and GNU Radio running on the Debain chrooted phone.

GQRX, GNU Radio, Rooted Android

MagicSDR: A new Android and iOS RTL_TCP Client

Unlike Android devices, Apple iOS devices can't run RTL-SDRs directly through their USB ports. However, they can still connect to another networked device such as a PC or Raspberry Pi running an rtl_tcp server. In the past we've seen two rtl_tcp clients for iOS released [1 , 2].

Now a third client called "MagicSDR" has just been released, and this one is cross platform for Android and iOS. The app is free on the Android store (with in-app purchases), and costs US$14.99 on the Apple App Store. The developer writes: 

MagicSDR makes it possible to interactively explore RF spectrum using panadapter and waterfall visualization, demodulate and play AM, SSB, CW, NFM, WFM signals, collect frequencies. Built on the principle of plug-in architecture, MagicSDR - powerful and flexible next-generation SDR (software-defined radio) application. Typical applications are dx-ing, ham radio, radio astronomy, and spectrum analysis. Explore the spectrum everywhere!

MagicSDR processes signals that are streamed over the local network from the rtl_tcp server, which is running on the host computer. The smartphone itself, on which MagicSDR is running, can act as a host computer.

To start playing with MagicSDR, you need to set up a server on a host computer to which SDR peripherals (rtl-sdr dongle) will be connected or connect SDR peripherals directly to a smartphone via a USB OTG cable. To try application without SDR peripherals, MagicSDR can emulate a virtual radio device.

MagicSDR rtl_tcp client on iOS

STARWAVES DRM SoftRadio: A new Android DRM Decoder for RTL-SDR, Airspy, SDRPlay

A new RTL-SDR compatible DRM decoding Android app called "STARWAVES DRM SoftRadio" has recently been released on the Google Play store for US$5.49, and on Amazon DE for EUR4.49. The author notes that a Windows version will also be published soon. Digital Radio Monodial (DRM) is a type of digital audio shortwave radio signal that is used by some international shortwave radio broadcasters.

The STARWAVES DRM SoftRadio allows you to conveniently enjoy any DRM live radio broadcast on your Android smartphone or tablet. No Internet connection required. All you need is an SDR RF dongle or receiver connected to your device via USB.

DRM or Digital Radio Mondiale is the global digital radio standard used for all digital international transmissions as well as for national and local services in many countries. To learn more about DRM and its features visit www.drm.org.

The STARWAVES DRM SoftRadio is designed for ease-of-use and supports all core features of the DRM standard:

  • Listener-centric and easy to navigate app design and user interface
  • Multiple user interface languages. Currently supported: English, German, Simplified Chinese
  • Convenient frequency tuning and DRM Service selection
  • DRM Service labels and graphical service logos
  • Full service metadata: programme/app type, language, country of origin, etc.
  • All standardized DRM audio codecs incl. xHE-AAC with optimized tune-in performance for a quick start of audio playback
  • Journaline, DRM’s advanced text application, allows to interactively browse through latest news, sports and weather updates, programme background information and schedules, distance learning/RadioSchooling text books, travel information, and much more
  • Full Journaline feature set including hot-button interactivity, geo-references and embedded/linked images
  • Convenient and fast Journaline information access with update notifications for page-content (and automatic updates for menus), as well as persistent caching for instant content access when switching between DRM services
  • DRM text messages incl. DL+ support
  • Slideshow images
  • Unicode support for all textual elements: service labels, text messages, Journaline
  • DRM EWF – Emergency Warning Functionality within the DRM transmission: in case of an emergency alarm signal, automatically re-tunes from the current service to the emergency programme; presents the emergency audio along with multi-lingual Journaline content to provide in-depth instructions with interactive access and to serve non-native speakers or hearing impaired users

In addition, STARWAVES DRM SoftRadio is designed for maximum tuning flexibility and performance:

  • Free tuning to any DRM broadcast frequency
  • Supports all DRM frequency bands – from the former AM bands (LW/MW/SW) to the VHF bands (including the FM band), depending only on RF dongle functionality
  • Supports all DRM robustness modes (A-E), modulation parameters and on-air signal bandwidths
  • Optimized frequency tuning and re-sync performance
  • Graphical spectrum view to check the signal on the tuned frequency

For live reception, an SDR RF dongle must be connected to the device’s USB port (with USB host functionality). The following SDR RF dongle families are currently supported, along with a range of specifically tested models:

  • Airspy HF+ family: Airspy HF Discovery, Airspy HF+ (Dual Port). (Note: Airspy Mini and R2 are NOT supported.)
  • SDRplay family: SDRPlay RSP1A, SDRPlay RSPdx, SDRPlay RSPduo, SDRPlay RSP1, SDRPlay RSP2, SDRPlay RSP2pro, MSI.SDR Panadapter (Note: SDRPlay family support on Android is currently limited to the 32-bit version of this app.)
  • RTL-SDR family: The experimental support for RTL-SDR based RF dongles requires that you manually start the following separate tool before opening this app (on standard port '14423'): The app 'SDR driver' can be installed from the Google Play Store and other Android app stores.
Starwaves DRM Decoder App Screenshots

Tech Minds: Portable RTL-SDR on Android

Over on his YouTube channel Tech Minds has recently released a new video demonstrating how to use an RTL-SDR portably via an Android tablet and an OTG cable. In the video he goes through the various Android software options available including general receiver software such as RF Analyzer (free) and SDR Touch (£5.99) as well as AVARE ADSB for ADS-B aircraft reception. He goes on to demonstrate each program in action.

Portable RTL - SDR Software Defined Radio with Android