Tuesday, December 6, 2011

How to get Kannada in android mobile?


Even when I was using a China mobile handset, I was engrossed with the question of how to read and write in Kannada using my phone just like in computer.

After getting my first android phone, Lg optimus, I searched breathlessly for tweaks to perform to get kannada. One workaround that I found was using opera mini browser. Opera mini browser has this option of rendering complex scripts as bitmaps. Using which you can read Kannada and other indic languages. This method, though a workaround has some pluses.

Opera mini browser is available for all android platforms. You can even install opera mini in phones supporting Java. I was using opera mini on my Lemon handset which runs on generic os used by China mobiles and supported Java.

But this work around was not sufficient for me. With no options for copying and saving text, searching, opera mini didn't quench my thirst.

On laying my hands on android mobile phone, I was determined to get Kannada. Soon I realised that the mobile phone vendors have to provide updates to the ROM with Kannada language support.

A bit of research helped me to learn rooting the android phone. Rooting essentially means getting privilege to access system files. I came across a tool called superoneclick to root my Samsung Galaxy SL (i9003) phone. However this works in windows. I haven't come across tools for linux yet.

In order to display kannada and other Indian languages, it is not enough just to have proper fonts. The OS should support complex script rendering. As the scripts for indic languages are more complex than monosyllabic languages. As for as Android is concerned there is no support for complex script rendering for ROMs lesser than 2.3 (aka Ginger Bread). I had Froyo (2.2) running on my phone. I rooted my phone, downloaded an official GingerBread ROM from samfirmware.com installed it using the flash tool provided in the site. Since the ROMs that are available were not specific to India, I couldn't read kannada properly on installing fonts. However one of my friend is happily reading and writing kannada by following the same procedure. The GingerBread ROM for his LG phone supported kannada on installing fonts.

The problem was solved for me when I recently upgraded the Kies software on my PC and connected my phone. It showed there is a upgrade available for my device. On upgrading my mobile jumped from 2.2.1 to 2.3.6! And kannada was rendered properly out of the box . Below are some of the screenshots from my mobile rendering kannada webpages properly.




For kannada input I did the following:

1. Downloaded Anysoft keyboard from android market

2. After installing Anysoft keyboard, I downloaded kannada plugin for anysoft keyboard develeoped by Shridhar.

3. After (1) and (2) go to settings>Locale and text












Under test settings you will see AnySoft Keyboard. Tick the box. Now press " Select input method" and choose anysoft keyboard as your input method.























Now open your SMS app. Tap on language selector two switch to kannada. Tap again to switch back to english.























The keyboard supports nudi layout. No support for Baraha like input to which I have accustomed to. Other than this the tool has some issues. I couldn't find shift key for kannada keyboard. The keyboard crashes on input of certain combinations of characters.

17 comments:

  1. Have you tried Sparsh Indian Keyboard? Any idea how good it is to input Kannada characters?

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  2. I tried Sparsh after reading your comment. The keyboard layout is neat but less intuitive. Long pressing of the keys to get gunitakshara is very annoying.
    There is one more keyboard, kannada-hindi keyboard by Bilekal Hegde( https://market.android.com/details?id=com.hegdeapp.kannadakeypad&feature=search_result#?t=W251bGwsMSwxLDEsImNvbS5oZWdkZWFwcC5rYW5uYWRha2V5cGFkIl0.) Try it out

    ReplyDelete
  3. samsung users are lucky to get complex script render support. I'm using motorola with cyanogenmod ROM 7(2.3.7), but still no one ported the complex script render support on any custom ROMs. My mobile can only display kannada but still conjuctions (ottakshara) are not supported. Help if you come accross.

    ReplyDelete
  4. @Bhushan
    Have you tried installing updates provided by Motorola? Because handset makers usually enable Indic support for the Indian version of their ROMs.

    I guess 2.3 supports complex script rendering. Try installing any kannada unicode font. If this doesn't work request motorola to release update for your handset.

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  5. Thank u for the information.. will try and report!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hey there, is there no posssibility of doing this in a level where it affects the entire system and not just "the font" My dad basically does not speak an ounce of english and this would be rather cool. I mean, you know when you change the language system on the phone to say chinese or spanish the entire phone changes to the chosen language. Considering how Android is here to stay would be cool if someone were to develop something to go with.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As of now there are no mods that implement custom locale to support indian languages at system level. We can implement locale support only at application level.

      Delete
  7. EN Boss, anysoft keyboard ge 1 Dollar, free alla.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ಹೌದು, ಮುಂಚೆ ಅದು ಉಚಿತವಾಗಿ ಲಭ್ಯವಿತ್ತು. ಈಗ ಅದಕ್ಕೆ ಚಾರ್ಜ್ ಮಾಡುತ್ತಿದ್ದಾರೆ.

      Delete
  8. ನಾನು micromaxA110, ICS ತಗೊಂಡಿದೀನಿ ಆದರೆ ಫಾಂಟ್ಸ್ ಇನ್ಸ್ಟಾಲ್ ಮಾಡಿದರು ಕೂಡ ಕನ್ನಡ ಬಳಸಾಳಗುತ್ತಿಲ್ಲ ಏನು ಮಾಡೋದು, ಫೋನ್ ರೂಟ್ ಮಾಡಿಲ್ಲ ಆದರೆ ಸಾಮ್ಸುಂಗ್ ಫೋನ್ಗಳು ಕನ್ನಡ ಸಹಕರಿಸುತ್ತವೆ..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ಸ್ಯಾಮ್ ಸಂಗ್ ತಾನಾಗಿ ಭಾರತೀಯ ಭಾಷೆಗಳಿಗೆ ಬೆಂಬಲವನ್ನು ನೀಡುತ್ತದೆ. ಇದು ಆಂಡ್ರಾಯ್ಡ್ ಆಪರೇಟಿಂಗ್ ಸಿಸ್ಟಮಿನಲ್ಲಿ ಇಲ್ಲ. ಜೆಲ್ಲಿ ಬೀನ್ (ಆಂಡ್ರಾಯ್ಡ್ 4.1) ನಂತರದಲ್ಲಿ ಸಂಪೂರ್ಣವಾಗಿ ಭಾರತೀಯ ಭಾಷೆಗಳನ್ನು ಬೆಂಬಲಿಸಲಾಗಿದೆ.

      ಈ ಕುರಿತು ಹೆಚ್ಚಿನ ಮಾಹಿತಿಯನ್ನು ನನ್ನ ಈ ಲೇಖನದಲ್ಲಿ ಪಡೆಯಬಹುದು: http://www.sanchaya.net/2013/01/blog-post_659.html

      Delete
  9. Pls fix the problem of HTC and Sony pls

    ReplyDelete
  10. ನಾನು ಕನ್ನಡ ಲಿಪಿಯನ್ನು ಬಳಸಬಹುದಾದ ಮೊಬೈಲೊಂದನ್ನು ಕೊಳ್ಳಲಿಚ್ಚಿಸಿದ್ದೇನೆ. ಸುಮಾರು 10000/- ರೂಗಳಲ್ಲಿ ಯಾವ ಮೊಬೈಲ್ ದೊರಕಬಹುದು. ದಯಮಾಡಿ ತಿಳಿಸುವಿರಾ?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ಸ್ಯಾಂಸಂಗ್ ಗ್ಯಾಲಕ್ಸಿ ಸರಣಿಯಲ್ಲಿ ಬಿಡುಗಡೆಯಾಗಿರುವ ಕೆಲವು ಫೋನ್ ಗಳಲ್ಲಿ ಕನ್ನಡ ಯುನಿಕೋಡ್ ಬೆಂಬಲವಿದೆ. ಸಧ್ಯಕ್ಕೆ ಅದನ್ನು ಹೊರತು ಪಡಿಸಿ ಬೇರೆ ಆಯ್ಕೆಗಳಿಲ್ಲ.

      Delete
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    ReplyDelete
  12. Xiaomi Redmi note 3 yalli kannada lipi baLasabahuda?

    ReplyDelete