November 19, 2018

652 words 4 mins read



Turn your Python application into an Android APK

repo name kivy/python-for-android
repo link
language Python
size (curr.) 17345 kB
stars (curr.) 5842
created 2011-11-28
license MIT License


Build Status Coverage Status Backers on Open Collective Sponsors on Open Collective

python-for-android is a packaging tool for Python apps on Android. You can create your own Python distribution including the modules and dependencies you want, and bundle it in an APK along with your own code.

Features include:

  • Support for building with both Python 2 and Python 3.
  • Different app backends including Kivy, PySDL2, and a WebView with Python webserver.
  • Automatic support for most pure Python modules, and built in support for many others, including popular dependencies such as numpy and sqlalchemy.
  • Multiple architecture targets, for APKs optimised on any given device.

For documentation and support, see:


Follow the quickstart instructions to install and begin creating APKs.

Quick instructions: install python-for-android with:

pip install python-for-android

(for the develop branch: pip install git+

Test that the install works with:

p4a --version

To build any actual apps, set up the Android SDK and NDK as described in the quickstart. Use the SDK/NDK API level & NDK version as in the quickstart, other API levels may not work.

With everything installed, build an APK with SDL2 with e.g.:

p4a apk --requirements=kivy --private /home/username/devel/planewave_frozen/ --package=net.inclem.planewavessdl2 --name="planewavessdl2" --version=0.5 --bootstrap=sdl2

For full instructions and parameter options, see the documentation.


If you need assistance, you can ask for help on our mailing list:

We also have #support Discord channel.


We love pull requests and discussing novel ideas. Check out the Kivy project contribution guide and feel free to improve python-for-android.

See our documentation for more information about the python-for-android development and release model, but don’t worry about the details. You just need to make a pull request, we’ll take care of the rest.

The following mailing list and IRC channel are used exclusively for discussions about developing the Kivy framework and its sister projects:

We also have #dev Discord channel.


python-for-android is released under the terms of the MIT License. Please refer to the LICENSE file.


In 2015 these tools were rewritten to provide a new, easier-to-use and easier-to-extend interface. If you’d like to browse the old toolchain, its status is recorded for posterity at at

In the last quarter of 2018 the python recipes were changed. The new recipe for python3 (3.7.1) had a new build system which was applied to the ancient python recipe, allowing us to bump the python2 version number to 2.7.15. This change unified the build process for both python recipes, and probably solved various issues detected over the years. It should also be mentioned that these unified python recipes require a minimum target api level of 21, Android 5.0 - Lollipop, so in the case that you need to build targeting an api level below 21, you should use an older version of python-for-android (<=0.7.1).

Be aware that this project is in constant development so, as per time of writing, you should use a minimum on Android’s NDK r19, and we recommend using NDK r19b. This is because the toolchains installed by default with the NDK can be used in-place and the python-for-android project has been adapted for that feature. Also be aware that more recent versions of the Android’s NDK may not work.

Those mentioned changes has been done this way to make easier the transition between python3 and python2. We will slowly phase out python2 support towards 2020…so…if you are using python2 in your projects you should consider migrating it into python3.


This project exists thanks to all the people who contribute. [Contribute].


Thank you to all our backers! 🙏 [Become a backer]


Support this project by becoming a sponsor. Your logo will show up here with a link to your website. [Become a sponsor]

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