Node-RED (Wikipedia) is a visual flow-based programming system, somewhat like the Automate Android app, built on top of Node.js. Programming is done on a Web browser. This is a significant advantage for Android versions of Node-RED (which we will see shortly) over other Android automation apps such as Tasker and Automate. The user does not have to program on a small screen of a smartphone.
If you would like to have a publicly accessible instance of Node-RED, there are a couple of ways: of course, one usual route is to host it on a VPS, but because it is based on Node.js, you could have it on selected cheap commercial Web hosting services.
In one of the official documents, “Running on Android : Node-RED,” they explain how you can run Node-RED via Termux and access Android-specific features through Termux:API. However, the functionality offered by Termux:API is rather limited. There is a video on YouTube which describes the whole process: “Node-Red on Android for Free.” This author says Node-RED running on Termux is a bit slower than RedMobile, which we’ll be looking at right below.
Then there’s RedMobile – Node-RED on Android, which costs $5 USD. It does offer device-specific features, but they seem limited. See below (taken from the app description page).
– gyroscope sensor
– light sensor
– magnetic sensor
– voice recognition
– speech synthesis
– dialogs (alert, confirm, prompt)
– USB serial
I said “seem” because even the official website does not give you much information. For example, from what I have gathered from the documents available online, it does not seem to offer any wifi-related functionality, which definitely seems odd, given that RedMobile is an Android-specific automation app. It is even odder if you think about the fact Node-RED on Termux does offer wifi-related features through Termux:API.
“Node-Red on Android Blew my Mind – YouTube” gives you a good overview.
…and also “5 Practical Uses for Node-Red on Android (Really!) – YouTube” by the same author. The Cast node does seem very useful.
I have not personally used Node-RED, but there’s some of my thoughts on it just from watching these videos: It looks fun programming visually but the flow diagram you get is not all that intuitively easy to understand; you will have to “peek” into each block to get a sense of what it is supposed to do.
Early in 2021, it became possible for a user to add any NPM module to RedMobile.
I also wrote about running Node.js (not Node-RED) on Android.
Some residual stuff in Japanese from the time I was taking notes in Japanese….