Android JNI / Talking with Java / Setting up a WebView

Hey, I’ve been working with android a bit and put together a perhaps dirty method of getting some urho3d c++ to java talk working, and it’s rather simple:

The following code will show how to call a java function we will create called ‘gotoGoogle’, which will be tacked onto located in Android/src/org/libsdl/app. The Java code will then call a c++ function we will create to inform out app when it’s ready.

Note: There is probably a cleaner way to do this (eg, extending SDLActivity), however I’m not familiar enough with android to know how-- contribute if you do !

File: Android/src/org/libsdl/app/

Add these imports:

import android.widget.ViewSwitcher; import android.webkit.WebView; import android.webkit.WebViewClient; import com.github.urho3d.R; import android.view.animation.Animation; import android.view.animation.AnimationUtils;
[li]ViewSwitcher is what will allow us to seamlessly switch between our urho application and the WebView (you can add animations, etc.)[/li]
[li]WebView and WebViewClient allow us to embed a browser / handle events in the browser.[/li]
[li]the R class is a machine-generated class that lets us access resources (eg, xml resources in Android/res)[/li]
[li]AnimationUtils lets us load animations from supplied resources[/li][/ul]

[size=150]In SDLActivtiy class:[/size]
Define these members in the SDLActivity class:

protected static WebView webview; protected static ViewSwitcher layoutSwitcher;
The WebView and ViewSwitcher are like UIElements in Urho3d, it holds the functionality for the widget and renders its contents.

Add these initializers to public static void initialize() in SDLActivity:

layoutSwitcher = null; mJoystickHandler = null;

At the bottom of protected void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState) in SDLActivity, change:

[code]mLayout = new AbsoluteLayout(this);



[code]webview = new WebView(this);

mLayout = new AbsoluteLayout(this);

layoutSwitcher = new ViewSwitcher(this);

You will need to set up
Animation animIn, animOut;
animIn = AnimationUtils.loadAnimation(this, R.anim.fadein);
animOut = AnimationUtils.loadAnimation(this, R.anim.fadeout);


Note: Later, we will create the resources that R.anim.fadein and R.anim.fadeout reference.

Now the meat of the Java, the function we will call from c++ to switch into the WebView – add these to SDLActivity:

[code]public void gotoGoogle() {
runOnUiThread(new Runnable() {
// Note: You must handle UI events like switching views and working with web view in the UI thread.
public void run() {
webview.getSettings().setJavaScriptEnabled(true); // there can be security concerns with javascript.

            webview.setWebViewClient(new WebViewClient(){
                public void onPageStarted(WebView view, String url, Bitmap favicon){
                   super.onPageStarted(view, url, favicon);
                   // just an example of capturing the page start loading event
                   Log.d("java urho", "Loading: " + url); // goes to the system console/logcat

                public void onPageFinished(WebView view, String url) {
                    super.onPageFinished(view, url);
                        // We will close the webview as soon as the page is loaded... add your own logic !

                public boolean shouldOverrideUrlLoading(WebView view, String url) {
                    // This allows us to follow links in the web view without them being deferred to another browser. You may or may not want this.
                    return true;

public void hideWebview() {

And one last important declaration so that we can call a c++ function that we will define:

[size=200]Animation Resources:[/size]
Let’s create the animation resources, Android/res/anim/fadein.xml and Android/res/anim/fadeout.xml:

[code]<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>

    android:toAlpha="1.0" >


[code]<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>

    android:toAlpha="0.0" >

Thankfully, we don’t have to worry about setting things up on the C++ away from our main source-- everything works from there.

To call gotoGoogle() from C++, we’ll set up a function that looks like this:

[code]#if defined(ANDROID)

#include “Log.h”

#include <SDL.h>
#include <jni.h>
#include <string.h>

#define JAVA_CHECK_EXCEPTION(env, msg)
while (env->ExceptionCheck())
LOGDEBUG(String("Exception:: ") + msg));

void JavaGotoGoogle()

JNIEnv *env = static_cast<JNIEnv*>(SDL_AndroidGetJNIEnv());
jobject activity = static_cast<jobject>(SDL_AndroidGetActivity());
jclass clazz = env->GetObjectClass(activity);
jmethodID gotoGoogle = env->GetMethodID(clazz, "gotoGoogle", "()V");// Note the signature string..

LOGDEBUG(String((int) loginGoogle)); // inspect that we get a handle -- should do error checking..

JAVA_CHECK_EXCEPTION(env, "Preperation"); // Macro to check for errors. Should really check after each call. Calling before the next bit to clear any errors that may happen earlier.

env->CallVoidMethod(activity, gotoGoogle); // the actual call to java.
JAVA_CHECK_EXCEPTION(env, "env->CallVoidMethod(clazz, gotoGoogle);"); //find out if the call went through- if not what were the errors.



To define the ‘returnWebviewUrl’ function we called in Java, we do the following:

extern "C" { JNIEXPORT jstring JNICALL Java_org_libsdl_app_SDLActivity_returnWebviewUrl (JNIEnv *env, jobject obj, jstring url) { LOGDEBUG("Java_org_libsdl_app_SDLActivity_returnWebviewUrl()"); const char* result = env->GetStringUTFChars(url, 0); if (result != NULL) { String s = String(result); LOGDEBUG(s); } env->ReleaseStringUTFChars(url, result); return env->NewStringUTF("Hello from C++ over JNI!"); } } #endif

Note the name of the function, it has to follow a strict naming convention for Java to find it. It should also be in the global scope.

And that’s it ! Pretty simple, although you will need to put your own logic in. Also, currently there’s no way to escape the webview if it gets stuck loading-- so you will need to provide your own options (eg, capture the ‘back’ button, provide GUI elements, etc).