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I am trying to develop an android wallet using Ethereum go and I ran the DroidGeth from this link. I tried to ran ethereum on the testnet, but its taking for ever to download the blockchain.

How can I start geth in a light weight mode or spv mode as in bitcoin ? So that I can run it on a smartphone, without downloading the full blockchain ?

Is there a better way to do it ?

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Light clients are in the works, mostly working, though pre-alpha state. They are developed as part of the go-ethereum project. You can find more infos in the light client gitter channel: https://gitter.im/ethereum/light-client .

Further go-ethereum is starting to do experimental android and ios libraries covering a wide variety of features, among others also light client support. It already works. Please see https://github.com/ethereum/go-ethereum/wiki/Mobile-Clients:-Libraries-and-Inproc-Ethereum-Nodes for details.

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There are no light clients available yet. Some of are progress related to cpp-ethereum project.

For light weight wallet app do a hosted server side wallet. The server communicates with Ethereum node (geth). Each registered user has their own wallet contract. Mobile application communicates with the server over proprietary protocol.

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