Blender on mobile devices

With the new 3d view, Blender can be used on mobile devices completely. Also the devices are getting better with upgraded hardware. So just want to know what is stopping blender from making dedicated versions for android. With new developments in iOS and Mac OS it will run on iphones anyways. So shouldn’t blender be available on android?
Also is this the right place to post these queries?
Let me know, I am new here …

1 Like

No, iPhone/iPad aren’t gonna happen… I’m pretty sure they don’t allow apps that have scripting languages built into them.

I guess it will be lots of hard work for basically a gimmick. Say they get it work. How about adding models and other items which are normally located on a drive. It could work by cloud or over network. But I daubt they want to or gonna do this. Think about how many different OSs there are, all the different types of hardware etc etc.

Perhaps I’m wrong, I’m no Dev and don’t know enough of the coding and native code

Not a dev either, but I’m not seeing a true value in porting blender as is to mobile devices.
I am wondering tho if it might be possible and feasible to make some parts of blender work on mobile devices, like sculpting for example. It would be great if I could use an app to work on models with an optimised ui and maybe better performance instead of an app that simply mirrors the whole screen (I have an iPad and I’m using astropad to mirror the screen so I can sculpt with a pen).

Also not a developer.

I believe the main limitation in porting Blender to Android or iOS is actually OpenGL. From what I can tell, most phones use OpenGL ES rather than the full OpenGL and as a result can’t run Blender. Work could probably be done to convert Blender to OpenGL ES, but development towards a Vulkan back end would probably be a better option as that runs on both mobile and desktop with the same API (from what I can tell).

iOS doesn’t support Vulkan, but there is a compatibility tool developed called “MoltenVK” which converts Vulkan to Metal so you can run Vulkan applications on iOS and Mac OS.

Another reason for a lack of Android/iOS version of Blender is probably usability. Most Android and iOS devices are phones and most people don’t use a keyboard and mouse with them. This means Blender will probably require a large re-design for it to work on these devices.

One needs only to look at this thread Is there interest in supporting a Metal version of Cycles for MacOS?
to see that Metal is a long way off at best. I wouldn’t hold my breath for it.

On the other hand, I think an iPad/Tablet version of Blender isn’t a bad idea… maybe the idea could be developed with Windows Surface tablets for now, to get the UI/UX working while support for other platforms is considered/developed? Or maybe jail-broken Android devices running some kind of GNU/Linux system? Maybe Android itself is a possibility.

Why would developers waste time on such gimmick?
Those platforms aren’t suited for such workflows and no sane user going to use them for it when even budget laptops easily outperform high end mobile/tablet devices.

5 Likes

bruh, Procreate is a huge force in the world of illustration and concept design. Don’t underestimate the convenience factor.

1 Like

I think a while ago there was a version of Blender 2.6x that ran on Android.

https://download.blender.org/demo/android/

I remember using it for a simple scene. Really needs a mouse and keyboard to be functional. It was a cool gimmick but just like going back and running Blender 1.0 that is pretty much all there is to it… A gimmick.

I seriously would not recommend using a full blown professional 3D suite on a mobile device, even if you could. Ideal mobile UX for 3D is FAR different from what you find in 3D desktop applications. The tedium of simple tasks alone makes it not convenient at all! Get a Windows Surface or something if you want to do Blender on-the-go. Even then working on production scenes will be rough due to HW specs.

A tablet with stylus is natural fit for drawing. Even for sculpting you need programmable buttons to work comfortably on something like Cintiq without a keyboard and Blenders modeling is very hotkey reliant.

1 Like