Useful Tips to Start Developing on Android
Written by on Wednesday, July 30th 2014
Have you ever wondered how to make an app? The web is full of tutorials where people share their knowledge about different subjects. As we have a team of app developers working daily with programming, we decided to ask two Android experts a few questions about Android Development. We already talked about iOS before, but today it’s Android time! Say hello to our special guests: Sérgio and Guido !
1. How and why did you start developing apps for Android?
Sérgio - For me it was different, because at first I wanted to do programming for iOS, but later, in school, I was very interested in embedded systems. And in that world, we heard that Android was a promising OS for embedded systems, so I began working with it and after there was this opportunity to work here at GoodBarber, so that’s how it began for me.
2. In your opinion, what do you need to become an Android Developer?
Of course you need a few basic things, such as a computer, the Eclipse or Android Studio inside (IDE) and a good book also helps a lot, I even can recommend one: Android 4 Application Development, by Reto Meier, it’s a very good reference to start out and also to improve your knowledge.
3. There are different languages, are they specific for each purpose? I heard that Android is Java-based. Are there any differences between "classic Java" and "Android Java"?
It can be said that Android development is Java-based but many of the Java libraries that are not supported either have better replacements (other similar libraries) or are simply not needed. For instance, to print data for debugging, Java programmers use the System.out. For Android it's recommended to use the Log class for this.
The virtual machine (which translates java code into machine understandable instructions) is also different. Java code compiles in Java bytecode, while Android code compiles in Davilk (or in ART since Android Kitkat) opcode.
4. What are the main differences between coding for computer software and mobile apps?
Our job when building apps is to offer the best user experience on every device.
5. Can you give some advice to people who want to start learning Android development?
Also, as said in the beginning, there are millions of apps available on Google Play, so there’s a big probability that there’s already an app with the same subject as yours. Take note that what will make the difference at that point is the design! So my advice is to always be design oriented while programming, because it will be crucial for you to create a great app. You can access the Google Developer page to find information about design of Android apps.