DeviceGuru writes: With half a billion Android smartphones shipping worldwide in 2012 alone, it's hardly a stretch to imagine that the global population of Android devices is nearing one billion. What if their idle CPU cycles could be harnessed for the good of humanity? With that in mind, the BOINC (Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing) project has just launched its first official Android app. Basically, BOINC is a distributed computing framework developed by researchers at the UC California Berkeley-based Space Sciences Lab, to tap into the idle compute cycles of millions of volunteers' PCs and apply that enormous aggregate resource to analyzing data collected by the nonprofit, NASA-sponsored SETI Institute. Eventually, the BOINC project broadened its scope and opened up its infrastructure to a diverse range of applications, of which SETI@home remains #1. BOINC for Android can be downloaded from BOINC's website or installed from the Google Play and Amazon app stores.