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Android on the Rabbit R1 runs perfectly, almost like it was meant to

1 month ago 60

HowToMen

As it turns out, Android can run on the Rabbit R1, and it isn’t some half-baked experience. It runs like Android was the intended OS, loaded onto the device from the factory.

The Rabbit R1 has been nothing but a controversial device. It’s one of a few devices that try to embody AI and do a rather disappointing job of it. It runs a custom OS built by Rabbit that’s based on the company’s LAMs.

As opposed to an LLM—large language model—an LAM is advertised as more sophisticated and able to incorporate action into its operating process. In fact, the purpose of the R1 is to take speech, recognize it, process it, and turn it into action. All of this is done in the cloud on Rabbit’s hardware somewhere else. The expected end result is that your commands are turned into actions for the device to complete.

That was the expected result. The Rabbit R1 ended up being a sluggish and incomplete device, delivering on nearly none of the promises Rabbit actually made in its teasers and press events. The $200 device of the future is currently seen as another attempt at AI-based hardware by one of a couple of startups trying to release a product way too soon.

HowToMen released a video of their Rabbit R1, though it doesn’t run Rabbit’s custom software. Instead, Facundo loaded the R1 with Android to recoup his losses. What he found was that the Rabbit R1 took to Android like it was native – because it is.

In fact, the Rabbit R1 is built on an AOSP build of Android, tuned to the R1’s capabilities, though the company vehemently denied those claims. It didn’t take long after release for a creator to flash the device with LineageOS, essentially loading it with a common version of Android.

HowToMen‘s approach is similar and results in a stock-like install of Android on the Rabbit R1. The device runs Android almost perfectly. The software change unlocked the keyboard for full use instead of limiting it severely. It allows the camera to be operated freely for video and photos and even adds a Quick Settings tile to position the 360-degree camera in different privacy modes.

What’s perhaps the best part about all of this is that this Rabbit R1 on Android now runs Gemini flawlessly. Google’s AI assistant has found a home inside the broken shell of what was supposed to be the most advanced AI action model.

It’s interesting that many functions have dedicated hardware shortcuts as if a developer built them in a certain way. For instance, screenshots can be taken by pressing the power button and swiping on the scroll wheel, which by itself is the volume rocker. The script responsible created these shortcuts when Android is loaded onto the orange future square, but it’s neat to see these functions work as if native.

The process for installing Android on the Rabbit R1 is available on GitHub under the project name “R1 Escape.” It’s the same process that the HowToMen channel used, though we’ve not tested it. With that said, follow the process at your own risk. The end result seems to be a device that fully functions.

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