I have an app called Timberman.

The image shows the note

Under the description it gives an important note:

Game is not compatible with ART devices at the moment. Please switch to Dalvik.

I don't understand what/ how can one confirm whether his device is an ARM device or a Dalvik supported. Also please give a clear difference between Dalvik and an ART.

Note: I would like to clarify that I am not seeking any recommendation regarding any particular application. I just want to know: how does the ART effect the game/device? Does it have anything to do with the safety of the phone or just the working of the device differs?

I have installed/used many applications so far, but I never came across this kind of a note.

  • 1
    You're confusing ART with ARM, ARM is the most common architecture used in Android devices, while ART is the new Android runtime which is not present in Android versions prior to 4.4, in 4.4 it's available under "Developer options" in Settings, and in Android L developer preview, it's the only runtime you can use. Most Android devices today use Dalvik. Sep 8, 2014 at 9:04
  • 2
    @Shvelo I guess that's rather a typo, as it appears only in one place – while throughout the question, OP uses the term ART correctly ;)
    – Izzy
    Sep 8, 2014 at 13:10

2 Answers 2


Short answer: unless you've changed it yourself, it's Dalvik.

Dalvik is currently the supported VM for Android. ART is a new VM, which is expected to become the supported one for the future L release. If you are using the L developer preview, you're using ART.

In KitKat, there is a preview (an early beta version) of ART, which you can turn on from the developer options. It's not recommended to do this, because the preview has bugs and is not yet compatible with all apps. The option's there primarily for app developers to test their apps with ART and report bugs.

So unless you're using the L developer preview, or have turned on ART in the developer settings, you're using Dalvik, which is the only recommended option for end users.


Basically there are two run-time environments on Android.

1) Dalvik VM : Dalvik is the managed runtime used by applications and some system services on Android. Dalvik was originally created specifically for the Android project.

2) ART- ART is a new Android runtime being introduced experimentally in the 4.4 release that will eventually replace Dalvik. This is a preview of work in progress in KitKat that can be turned on in Settings > developer options.

Important: Dalvik must remain the default runtime or you risk breaking your Android implementations and third-party applications.

Above content is from Android developer site.

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