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How to Clear or Release Audio Resources in Android?
  • Difficulty Level : Expert
  • Last Updated : 17 Nov, 2020

As the memory consumption in Android is prioritized more, if the Application is using the Mediaplayer API, most of the memory resources are allocated. The developer needs to take care when the Mediaplayer instance is no longer needed or after completion of playing the media resource file. So in this article, it’s been discussed how the media player resources can be released in various scenarios step-by-step so that the memory consumption of the application is stable.

Steps to Release the Audio Resources

Step 1: Create an Empty Activity Android Studio project.

Step 2: Preparing the sample Audio file to play.

  • In this case, a sample MP3 file is taken in the raw folder.
  • To create the “rawfolder right click on the res > New > Android Resource Directory and select the resource type as the raw.
  • And after creating the folder add some sample audio file to play.
  • Refer to the following video if unable to get the above steps.

Step 3: Working with the activity_main.xml

  • In the activity_main.xml file, there is a simple PLAY button is implemented to start playing the audio file when clicked.
  • Invoke the following code.

XML



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<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<RelativeLayout 
    xmlns:tools="http://schemas.android.com/tools"
    android:layout_width="match_parent"
    android:layout_height="match_parent"
    tools:context=".MainActivity"
    tools:ignore="HardcodedText">
  
    <!--simple button to play the audio file-->
    <!--give appropriate id to handle it in the java file-->
    <Button
        android:id="@+id/play_button"
        android:layout_width="wrap_content"
        android:layout_height="wrap_content"
        android:layout_centerInParent="true"
        android:backgroundTint="@color/colorPrimary"
        android:text="PLAY"
        android:textColor="@android:color/white"
        android:textSize="18sp" />
  
</RelativeLayout>

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Output UI:

 Clear or Release Audio resources in Android

Step 4: Working with the MainActivity.java file

  • Initiate the MediaPlayer instance with the raw resource to play the audio file.
  • Invoke the following code to handle the play button to start playing the audio file.
  • Comments are added inside the code for better understanding.

Java

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import androidx.appcompat.app.AppCompatActivity;
import android.media.MediaPlayer;
import android.os.Bundle;
import android.view.View;
import android.widget.Button;
  
public class MainActivity extends AppCompatActivity {
  
    // Mediaplayer instance to initiate the audio file to play
    MediaPlayer mediaPlayer;
  
    // Button instance to handle the PLAY button
    Button bPlay;
  
    @Override
    protected void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState) {
        super.onCreate(savedInstanceState);
        setContentView(R.layout.activity_main);
  
        // register the PLAY button with appropriate id.
        bPlay = findViewById(R.id.play_button);
  
        // prepare the audio file for mediaPlayer instance to play it.
        mediaPlayer = MediaPlayer.create(this, R.raw.song);
  
        // handle the play button
        bPlay.setOnClickListener(new View.OnClickListener() {
            @Override
            public void onClick(View v) {
                mediaPlayer.start();
            }
        });
    }
}

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Output: Run on Emulator

Various scenarios where the Audio resources can be released or cleared

Note: In this case, there are two scenarios that have been shown for demonstration purpose.
There can be more other scenarios where the audio resources can be released.

Scenario 1: After completely playing the audio file

  • This is one of the scenarios where the Audio resources can be released.
  • In this case, the resources are released, after completely playing the audio file.
  • Invoke the following code to implement the on completion listener for the mediaPlayer instance and release the Audio resources.

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import androidx.appcompat.app.AppCompatActivity;
import android.media.MediaPlayer;
import android.os.Bundle;
import android.view.View;
import android.widget.Button;
  
public class MainActivity extends AppCompatActivity {
  
    // Mediaplayer instance to initiate 
      // the audio file to play
    MediaPlayer mediaPlayer;
  
    // Button instance to handle the PLAY button
    Button bPlay;
  
    // Implement the on completion listener callback to do the 
      // actions on the media player instance
    // when the audio file gets completely played
    MediaPlayer.OnCompletionListener onCompletionListener = new MediaPlayer.OnCompletionListener() {
        @Override
        public void onCompletion(MediaPlayer mp) {
            releaseMediaPlayerResources();
        }
    };
  
    @Override
    protected void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState) {
        super.onCreate(savedInstanceState);
        setContentView(R.layout.activity_main);
  
        // register the PLAY button with appropriate id.
        bPlay = findViewById(R.id.play_button);
  
        // prepare the audio file for 
          // mediaPlayer instance to play it.
        mediaPlayer = MediaPlayer.create(this, R.raw.song);
  
        // handle the play button
        bPlay.setOnClickListener(new View.OnClickListener() {
            @Override
            public void onClick(View v) {
                mediaPlayer.start();
  
                mediaPlayer.setOnCompletionListener(onCompletionListener);
            }
        });
    }
  
    // dedicated function is made to check the 
      // mediaPlayer instance is null or not
    // based on that the actions are taken on
      // the mediaPlayer instance
    void releaseMediaPlayerResources() {
        if (mediaPlayer != null) {
  
            // it is safe to stop playing the audio 
              // file before releasing the audio file
            mediaPlayer.stop();
  
            // after stop playing the audio file 
              // release the audio resources
            mediaPlayer.release();
        }
    }
}

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Scenario 2: When the user presses the back or home button.

  • If the application is of the type of news reading or podcast, Whenever the user presses the back button or home button, the application will be in the Stop state.
  • So at this condition, the onStop method needs to be overridden and the allocated Audio resources should be released or cleared.
  • Invoke the following code to the MainActivity.java file.

Java

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import androidx.appcompat.app.AppCompatActivity;
import android.media.MediaPlayer;
import android.os.Bundle;
import android.view.View;
import android.widget.Button;
  
public class MainActivity extends AppCompatActivity {
  
    // Mediaplayer instance to initiate the audio file to play
    MediaPlayer mediaPlayer;
  
    // Button instance to handle the PLAY button
    Button bPlay;
  
    // Implement the on completion listener callback to do 
      // the actions on the media player instance
    // when the audio file gets completely played
    MediaPlayer.OnCompletionListener onCompletionListener = new MediaPlayer.OnCompletionListener() {
        @Override
        public void onCompletion(MediaPlayer mp) {
            releaseMediaPlayerResources();
        }
    };
  
    @Override
    protected void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState) {
        super.onCreate(savedInstanceState);
        setContentView(R.layout.activity_main);
  
        // register the PLAY button with appropriate id.
        bPlay = findViewById(R.id.play_button);
  
        // prepare the audio file for mediaPlayer instance to play it.
        mediaPlayer = MediaPlayer.create(this, R.raw.song);
  
        // handle the play button
        bPlay.setOnClickListener(new View.OnClickListener() {
            @Override
            public void onClick(View v) {
                mediaPlayer.start();
  
                mediaPlayer.setOnCompletionListener(onCompletionListener);
            }
        });
    }
  
    @Override
    protected void onStop() {
  
        // Before going to stop state release the 
          // allocated mediaplyer resources
        releaseMediaPlayerResources();
  
        super.onStop();
    }
  
    // dedicated function is made to check the 
      // mediaPlayer instance is null or not
    // based on that the actions are taken 
      // on the mediaPlayer instance
    void releaseMediaPlayerResources() {
        if (mediaPlayer != null) {
  
            // it is safe to stop playing the audio file 
              // before releasing the audio file
            mediaPlayer.stop();
  
            // after stop playing the audio file 
              // release the audio resources
            mediaPlayer.release();
        }
    }
}

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The audio should be stopped when the home button is pressed. Like the following:


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