If you are interested in Android app development, there are numerous fundamentals you should know. Nowadays, apps have become a part of our everyday life. With more than 129 million Android users in the United States alone, it is suitable for programmers to get their heads around the need-to-know concepts before developing an Android app.
While app building platforms like Builder.ai make it easy to create an Android application, any digital entrepreneur or developer should understand the fundamentals.
If you are building an Android app from scratch, you’ll need to develop a comprehensive knowledge of the main programming languages used in Android app development. In this instance, the main languages are Java and XML. As such, you should take time to research the following constructs in the Java programming language:
- Objects & classes
- Inheritance & interfaces
- Strings & numbers, generics,
If you take the time to understand both of these languages, you’ll be well-placed to create a flawless Android app.
Android app development utilizes many build automation tools and an integrated development environment. For example, you can use Android app studio IDE for all your automation tools; this is a great way to learn the basics and improve your code. The Eclipse IDE is another excellent option for new developers. Both software will help understand the likes of Apache Ant, Gradle, and Apache Maven, all of which lend themselves to your builds.
It would help if you got acquainted with source control concepts and tools. First, learn git, then build a git-source repository (via Bitbucket or GitHub). If you struggle to understand the basic terminology and concepts, you can refer to the Git Pocket Guide for assistance.
Your app components are the foundations of Android app development. Each component represents a different place through which the system enters your platform. Although they are entities with their unique role, some components rely on each other, while some are not entry points.
Predominantly, there are five app component types, all of which have their purpose and life cycle. These include:
The activities component refers to a user interface on a single screen. For example, this could be a messaging app showing your message inbox, followed by another activity writing those messages and saving those messages. These activities work in tandem to create a seamless user experience on your platform while still being independent.
The services component runs behind the scenes, performing long-running operations and remote processes. However, this component does not offer a user interface. For example, a services component may play podcasts or music while engaging with another app.
- Content providers
The content provider component essentially manages shared application data. Any data stored on the web, file system, or an SQLite database can be modified and queried (as long the content provider gives the necessary permissions). This is handy for writing and reading private data.
- Broadcast receivers
This type of component deals with announcements broadcast across the system. Most broadcast receivers begin in the system, and even though they do not have a user interface, they can create a notification that alerts users when required.
You need to be aware that Android is a fragmented marketplace with many operating systems and devices available. If your device supports many devices, you’ll spend more money on maintenance and testing. It would help if you also took some time to familiarize yourself with fonts, layouts, and assets to ensure you provide the best user experience possible. In addition, there are many Android-supported sensors and UI features that work together to make a bug-free platform.
If you are serious about Android app development, speak to Builder.ai today.