Step by step Accelerometer examples for android.

Learn programmatic usage of accelerometer in your mobile app.

What is an Accelerometer?

An accelerometer is a tool that measures proper acceleration. Proper acceleration is the acceleration of a body in its own instantaneous rest frame; this is different from coordinate acceleration, which is acceleration in a fixed coordinate system

Majprity of high-end modern smartphones tend to be fitted with an accelerometer. Thus we need to learn how to use it programmatically.

Here are some examples:

1. Simple Accelerometer Example

Practice of accelerometer in android devices, let's move that ball.

Here is the demo project:

Accelerometer Tutorial

Step 1. Our Android Manifest

We will need to look at our AndroidManifest.xml.

(a). AndroidManifest.xml

Our AndroidManifest file.

Here we will add the following permission:

  1. Our VIBRATE permission.

Here is the full Android Manifest file:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<manifest xmlns:android="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res/android"
    package="com.projects.enzoftware.metalball">
    <uses-permission android:name="android.permission.VIBRATE" />
    <application
        android:allowBackup="true"
        android:icon="@mipmap/ic_launcher"
        android:label="@string/app_name"
        android:roundIcon="@mipmap/ic_launcher_round"
        android:supportsRtl="true"
        android:theme="@style/AppTheme">
        <activity android:name=".MetalBall">
            <intent-filter>
                <action android:name="android.intent.action.MAIN" />

                <category android:name="android.intent.category.LAUNCHER" />
            </intent-filter>
        </activity>
    </application>

</manifest>

Step 2. Design Layouts

Here are the layouts for this project:

(a). activity_metal_ball.xml

Our activity_metal_ball layout.

Inside your /res/layout/ directory create an xml layout file named activity_metal_ball.xml.

Add these two widgets:

  1. android.support.constraint.ConstraintLayout
  2. TextView
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<android.support.constraint.ConstraintLayout xmlns:android="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res/android"
    xmlns:app="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res-auto"
    xmlns:tools="http://schemas.android.com/tools"
    android:layout_width="match_parent"
    android:layout_height="match_parent"
    tools:context="com.projects.enzoftware.metalball.MetalBall">

    <TextView
        android:layout_width="wrap_content"
        android:layout_height="wrap_content"
        android:text="Hello World!"
        app:layout_constraintBottom_toBottomOf="parent"
        app:layout_constraintLeft_toLeftOf="parent"
        app:layout_constraintRight_toRightOf="parent"
        app:layout_constraintTop_toTopOf="parent" />

</android.support.constraint.ConstraintLayout>

Step 3. Write Code

Finally we need to write our code as follows:

(a). MetalBall.kt

Our MetalBall class.

Create a Kotlin file named MetalBall.kt.

We will then add imports from android SDK and other packages. Here are some of the imports we will use in this class:

  1. Service from the android.app package.
  2. BluetoothClass from the android.bluetooth package.
  3. Context from the android.content package.
  4. ActivityInfo from the android.content.pm package.
  5. Bitmap from the android.graphics package.
  6. BitmapFactory from the android.graphics package.
  7. Canvas from the android.graphics package.
  8. Point from the android.graphics package.
  9. Sensor from the android.hardware package.
  10. SensorEvent from the android.hardware package.
  11. SensorEventListener from the android.hardware package.
  12. SensorManager from the android.hardware package.
  13. Build from the android.os package.
  14. AppCompatActivity from the android.support.v7.app package.
  15. Bundle from the android.os package.
  16. Vibrator from the android.os package.
  17. * from the android.view package.

Next create a class that derives from AppCompatActivity and add its contents as follows:

We will be overriding the following functions:

  1. onCreate(savedInstanceState: Bundle?).
  2. onAccuracyChanged(sensor: Sensor?, accuracy: Int).
  3. onSensorChanged(event: SensorEvent?).
  4. onResume().
  5. onPause().
  6. run().
  7. surfaceChanged(holder: SurfaceHolder?, format: Int, width: Int, height: Int).
  8. surfaceDestroyed(holder: SurfaceHolder?).
  9. surfaceCreated(holder: SurfaceHolder?).
  10. draw(canvas: Canvas?).
  11. onDraw(canvas: Canvas?).

We will be creating the following methods:

  1. setRunning(parameter) - This function will take a Boolean object as a parameter.
  2. updateMe(inx : Float , iny : Float).

(a). Our setRunning() function

Write the setRunning() function as follows:

        fun setRunning(run : Boolean){
            this.run = run
        }

(b). Our updateMe() function

Write the updateMe() function as follows:

    fun updateMe(inx : Float , iny : Float){
        lastGx += inx
        lastGy += iny

        cx += lastGx
        cy += lastGy

        if(cx > (Windowwidth - picWidth)){
            cx = (Windowwidth - picWidth).toFloat()
            lastGx = 0F
            if (noBorderX){
                vibratorService!!.vibrate(100)
                noBorderX = false
            }
        }
        else if(cx < (0)){
            cx = 0F
            lastGx = 0F
            if(noBorderX){
                vibratorService!!.vibrate(100)
                noBorderX = false
            }
        }
        else{ noBorderX = true }

        if (cy > (Windowheight - picHeight)){
            cy = (Windowheight - picHeight).toFloat()
            lastGy = 0F
            if (noBorderY){
                vibratorService!!.vibrate(100)
                noBorderY = false
            }
        }

        else if(cy < (0)){
            cy = 0F
            lastGy = 0F
            if (noBorderY){
                vibratorService!!.vibrate(100)
                noBorderY= false
            }
        }
        else{ noBorderY = true }

        invalidate()

    }

Here is the full code:

package replace_with_your_package_name

import android.app.Service
import android.bluetooth.BluetoothClass
import android.content.Context
import android.content.pm.ActivityInfo
import android.graphics.Bitmap
import android.graphics.BitmapFactory
import android.graphics.Canvas
import android.graphics.Point
import android.hardware.Sensor
import android.hardware.SensorEvent
import android.hardware.SensorEventListener
import android.hardware.SensorManager
import android.os.Build
import android.support.v7.app.AppCompatActivity
import android.os.Bundle
import android.os.Vibrator
import android.view.*

class MetalBall : AppCompatActivity() , SensorEventListener {

    private var mSensorManager : SensorManager ?= null
    private var mAccelerometer : Sensor ?= null
    var ground : GroundView ?= null

    override fun onCreate(savedInstanceState: Bundle?) {
        requestWindowFeature(Window.FEATURE_NO_TITLE)
        super.onCreate(savedInstanceState)
        // get reference of the service
        mSensorManager = getSystemService(Context.SENSOR_SERVICE) as SensorManager
        // focus in accelerometer
        mAccelerometer = mSensorManager!!.getDefaultSensor(Sensor.TYPE_ACCELEROMETER)
        // setup the window
        requestedOrientation = ActivityInfo.SCREEN_ORIENTATION_LANDSCAPE

        window.setFlags(WindowManager.LayoutParams.FLAG_FULLSCREEN,
                        WindowManager.LayoutParams.FLAG_FULLSCREEN)

        if (Build.VERSION.SDK_INT >= Build.VERSION_CODES.HONEYCOMB){
            window.decorView.systemUiVisibility =   View.SYSTEM_UI_FLAG_LAYOUT_STABLE
            View.SYSTEM_UI_FLAG_LAYOUT_HIDE_NAVIGATION
            View.SYSTEM_UI_FLAG_LAYOUT_FULLSCREEN
            View.SYSTEM_UI_FLAG_HIDE_NAVIGATION
            View.SYSTEM_UI_FLAG_FULLSCREEN
            View.SYSTEM_UI_FLAG_IMMERSIVE
        }

        // set the view
        ground = GroundView(this)
        setContentView(ground)
    }

    override fun onAccuracyChanged(sensor: Sensor?, accuracy: Int) {
    }

    override fun onSensorChanged(event: SensorEvent?) {
        if (event != null) {
            ground!!.updateMe(event.values[1] , event.values[0])
        }
    }

    override fun onResume() {
        super.onResume()
        mSensorManager!!.registerListener(this,mAccelerometer,
                                        SensorManager.SENSOR_DELAY_GAME)
    }

    override fun onPause() {
        super.onPause()
        mSensorManager!!.unregisterListener(this)
    }

    class DrawThread (surfaceHolder: SurfaceHolder , panel : GroundView) : Thread() {
        private var surfaceHolder :SurfaceHolder ?= null
        private var panel : GroundView ?= null
        private var run = false

        init {
            this.surfaceHolder = surfaceHolder
            this.panel = panel
        }

        fun setRunning(run : Boolean){
            this.run = run
        }

        override fun run() {
            var c: Canvas ?= null
            while (run){
                c = null
                try {
                    c = surfaceHolder!!.lockCanvas(null)
                    synchronized(surfaceHolder!!){
                        panel!!.draw(c)
                    }
                }finally {
                    if (c!= null){
                        surfaceHolder!!.unlockCanvasAndPost(c)
                    }
                }
            }
        }

    }

}

class GroundView(context: Context?) : SurfaceView(context), SurfaceHolder.Callback{

    // ball coordinates
    var cx : Float = 10.toFloat()
    var cy : Float = 10.toFloat()

    // last position increment

    var lastGx : Float = 0.toFloat()
    var lastGy : Float = 0.toFloat()

    // graphic size of the ball

    var picHeight: Int = 0
    var picWidth : Int = 0

    var icon:Bitmap ?= null

    // window size

    var Windowwidth : Int = 0
    var Windowheight : Int = 0

    // is touching the edge ?

    var noBorderX = false
    var noBorderY = false

    var vibratorService : Vibrator ?= null
    var thread : MetalBall.DrawThread?= null

    init {
        holder.addCallback(this)
        //create a thread
        thread = MetalBall.DrawThread(holder, this)
        // get references and sizes of the objects
        val display: Display = (getContext().getSystemService(Context.WINDOW_SERVICE) as WindowManager).defaultDisplay
        val size:Point = Point()
        display.getSize(size)
        Windowwidth = size.x
        Windowheight = size.y
        icon = BitmapFactory.decodeResource(resources,R.drawable.ball)
        picHeight = icon!!.height
        picWidth = icon!!.width
        vibratorService = (getContext().getSystemService(Service.VIBRATOR_SERVICE)) as Vibrator
    }

    override fun surfaceChanged(holder: SurfaceHolder?, format: Int, width: Int, height: Int) {
    }

    override fun surfaceDestroyed(holder: SurfaceHolder?) {
    }

    override fun surfaceCreated(holder: SurfaceHolder?) {
        thread!!.setRunning(true)
        thread!!.start()
    }

    override fun draw(canvas: Canvas?) {
        super.draw(canvas)
        if (canvas != null){
            canvas.drawColor(0xFFAAAAA)
            canvas.drawBitmap(icon,cx,cy,null)
        }
    }

    override public fun onDraw(canvas: Canvas?) {

        if (canvas != null){
            canvas.drawColor(0xFFAAAAA)
            canvas.drawBitmap(icon,cx,cy,null)
        }
    }

    fun updateMe(inx : Float , iny : Float){
        lastGx += inx
        lastGy += iny

        cx += lastGx
        cy += lastGy

        if(cx > (Windowwidth - picWidth)){
            cx = (Windowwidth - picWidth).toFloat()
            lastGx = 0F
            if (noBorderX){
                vibratorService!!.vibrate(100)
                noBorderX = false
            }
        }
        else if(cx < (0)){
            cx = 0F
            lastGx = 0F
            if(noBorderX){
                vibratorService!!.vibrate(100)
                noBorderX = false
            }
        }
        else{ noBorderX = true }

        if (cy > (Windowheight - picHeight)){
            cy = (Windowheight - picHeight).toFloat()
            lastGy = 0F
            if (noBorderY){
                vibratorService!!.vibrate(100)
                noBorderY = false
            }
        }

        else if(cy < (0)){
            cy = 0F
            lastGy = 0F
            if (noBorderY){
                vibratorService!!.vibrate(100)
                noBorderY= false
            }
        }
        else{ noBorderY = true }

        invalidate()

    }
}

Reference

Download the code below:

No. Link
1. Download Full Code
2. Read more here.
3. Follow code author here.
Read More.

2. Accelerometer Experimentation

Experimentation with how to use the accelerometer to make cool effects on Android in Kotlin.

Below is a full android sample to demonstrate Accelerometer concept.

Step 1. Design Layouts

(a). activity_main.xml

Our activity_main layout.

Design your XML layout using the following 2 UI widgets and ViewGroups:

  1. RelativeLayout
  2. TextView
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<RelativeLayout xmlns:android="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res/android"
    xmlns:app="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res-auto"
    xmlns:tools="http://schemas.android.com/tools"
    android:layout_width="match_parent"
    android:layout_height="match_parent"
    android:background="#212121"
    tools:context=".MainActivity">

    <TextView
        android:id="@+id/tv_square"
        android:layout_width="200dp"
        android:layout_height="200dp"
        android:layout_centerInParent="true"
        android:background="#EF5350"
        android:gravity="center"
        android:text="Hello"
        android:textColor="@color/white"
        android:textSize="20sp" />

</RelativeLayout>

Step 2. Write Code

Finally we need to write our code as follows:

(a). MainActivity.kt

Our MainActivity class.

Create a Kotlin file named MainActivity.kt.

We will then add imports from android SDK and other packages. Here are some of the imports we will use in this class:

  1. Color from the android.graphics package.
  2. Sensor from the android.hardware package.
  3. SensorEvent from the android.hardware package.
  4. SensorEventListener from the android.hardware package.
  5. SensorManager from the android.hardware package.
  6. AppCompatActivity from the androidx.appcompat.app package.
  7. Bundle from the android.os package.
  8. TextView from the android.widget package.
  9. AppCompatDelegate from the androidx.appcompat.app package.

Next create a class that derives from AppCompatActivity and add its contents as follows:

We will be overriding the following functions:

  1. onCreate(savedInstanceState: Bundle?).
  2. onSensorChanged(event: SensorEvent?).
  3. onAccuracyChanged(sensor: Sensor?, accuracy: Int).
  4. onDestroy().

We will be creating the following methods:

  1. setUpSensorStuff().

(a). Our setUpSensorStuff() function

WesetUpSensorStuff() as follows:

    private fun setUpSensorStuff() {
        // Create the sensor manager
        sensorManager = getSystemService(SENSOR_SERVICE) as SensorManager

        // Specify the sensor you want to listen to
        sensorManager.getDefaultSensor(Sensor.TYPE_ACCELEROMETER)?.also { accelerometer ->
            sensorManager.registerListener(
                this,
                accelerometer,
                SensorManager.SENSOR_DELAY_FASTEST,
                SensorManager.SENSOR_DELAY_FASTEST
            )
        }
    }

Here is the full code:

package replace_with_your_package_name

import android.graphics.Color
import android.hardware.Sensor
import android.hardware.SensorEvent
import android.hardware.SensorEventListener
import android.hardware.SensorManager
import androidx.appcompat.app.AppCompatActivity
import android.os.Bundle
import android.widget.TextView
import androidx.appcompat.app.AppCompatDelegate

class MainActivity : AppCompatActivity(), SensorEventListener {

    private lateinit var sensorManager: SensorManager
    private lateinit var square: TextView

    override fun onCreate(savedInstanceState: Bundle?) {
        super.onCreate(savedInstanceState)
        setContentView(R.layout.activity_main)

        // Keeps phone in light mode
        AppCompatDelegate.setDefaultNightMode(AppCompatDelegate.MODE_NIGHT_NO)

        square = findViewById(R.id.tv_square)

        setUpSensorStuff()
    }

    private fun setUpSensorStuff() {
        // Create the sensor manager
        sensorManager = getSystemService(SENSOR_SERVICE) as SensorManager

        // Specify the sensor you want to listen to
        sensorManager.getDefaultSensor(Sensor.TYPE_ACCELEROMETER)?.also { accelerometer ->
            sensorManager.registerListener(
                this,
                accelerometer,
                SensorManager.SENSOR_DELAY_FASTEST,
                SensorManager.SENSOR_DELAY_FASTEST
            )
        }
    }

    override fun onSensorChanged(event: SensorEvent?) {
        // Checks for the sensor we have registered
        if (event?.sensor?.type == Sensor.TYPE_ACCELEROMETER) {
            //Log.d("Main", "onSensorChanged: sides ${event.values[0]} front/back ${event.values[1]} ")

            // Sides = Tilting phone left(10) and right(-10)
            val sides = event.values[0]

            // Up/Down = Tilting phone up(10), flat (0), upside-down(-10)
            val upDown = event.values[1]

            square.apply {
                rotationX = upDown * 3f
                rotationY = sides * 3f
                rotation = -sides
                translationX = sides * -10
                translationY = upDown * 10
            }

            // Changes the colour of the square if it's completely flat
            val color = if (upDown.toInt() == 0 && sides.toInt() == 0) Color.GREEN else Color.RED
            square.setBackgroundColor(color)

            square.text = "up/down ${upDown.toInt()}nleft/right ${sides.toInt()}"
        }
    }

    override fun onAccuracyChanged(sensor: Sensor?, accuracy: Int) {
        return
    }

    override fun onDestroy() {
        sensorManager.unregisterListener(this)
        super.onDestroy()
    }
}

Reference

Download the code below:

No. Link
1. Download Full Code
2. Read more here.
3. Follow code author here.
Read More.