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Serval Mesh is the Serval Project's flagship product. It is a free and open-source app for Android 2.2 “Froyo” and later, under continuous development. The latest official release of the Serval Mesh app is freely available from Google Play.
Serval Mesh allows people to make voice calls, send text messages and share files with other Serval Mesh users, without requiring infrastructure like satellites, cell phone towers, Wi-Fi hot spots, or radio repeaters. The primary motivation is to provide resilient communications during crisis and disaster situations, when vulnerable infrastructure like phone cell towers and mains electricity are cut off. Serval Mesh is also useful for remote communities who lack conventional telephone services, small organisations who need an internal telephone system, and dissidents in oppressive countries that deny or monitor their citizens' telecommunications.
Serval Mesh can use the Wi-Fi capabilities built into Android to connect with other devices within range. This requires a near by Access Point, or turning on the portable HotSpot feature of one device. On some device's Serval Mesh can use Ad Hoc mode to communicate directly with other devices within range, allowing communications to be easily relayed over multiple hops. To do so requires root permission on the Android device.
The Supported Devices page lists all the Android devices that have been tried with Serval Mesh. If your device is not in the list, and you try it out anyway, please contact the Serval Project to let us know how it went.
How to install
There are several ways to install on an Android device. You may EITHER:
Once installed, refer to Serval Mesh installation notes for guidance through the installation process.
- Hotfix releases 0.92.1, 0.92.2, etc. might be made to correct any serious issues with Version 0.92
- Versions 0.93, 0.94 etc. interim releases might be made during 2015
- Version 1.0 “Showtime” is planned for eventual release
- Technology Roadmap lists features under consideration for 1.x and 2.x releases
To report a bug in Serval Mesh, please refer to the following instructions:
- how to report bugs to the Serval Project - for the procedure to follow
- information for Serval Mesh developers - to work out under which repository to file the report
If that is not your cup of tea, you may wish to contact the Serval Project directly.
Developers and contributors
The instructions for Serval Mesh developers are for anybody interested in contributing to the development of Serval Mesh software.
- Version 0.91 was released in July 2013
- Version 0.90.1 was released in February 2013 to correct some serious issues in 0.90 “Shiny”
- Version 0.90 “Shiny” was released in January 2013
- Version 0.08 was released in late June 2012
- Version 0.07 was released in December 2011
- Version 0.06 was released in September 2011