Android App Development Fundamentals for Beginners 2023

Page reviewed by: Abhinav Girdhar | Last Updated on December 23rd, 2023 1:57 pm

Android App Development is the process of creating software applications for use on Android devices, such as smartphones, tablets, and smart TVs. It involves the use of programming languages such as Java and Kotlin, along with various development tools and frameworks. Android app development is a complex process that requires a strong understanding of software engineering principles and knowledge of the Android SDK.

Developing an Android app requires a wide range of skills including programming, design, UX/UI, and more. It also requires a deep understanding of how Android works and what users want from their apps. As such, developing a successful Android app requires a lot of dedication and hard work from developers. However, with hard work comes rewards in the form of satisfied users and a successful business venture for those who choose to monetize their apps.


  1. Programming Languages for Android Application Development
  2. Android Mobile App Development Bundles
  3. Android App Components
  4. Creating an Android Project with Android Studio
  5. Best Practices for Android App Development

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What language are android apps written in?

Android application development refers to the process of creating applications for devices running on the Android operating system. Android is an open source mobile platform developed by Google and is based on the Linux kernel. It was first released in 2008 and has since become the most popular mobile operating system in the world. Android applications are typically written using the Java programming language, but other languages such as C++, Kotlin, and Python can also be used.

Android SDK

“The Android SDK is a powerful set of tools that allow developers to quickly and easily create beautiful, innovative Android applications.” – Hugo Barra, Global VP of Android Product Management

The Android SDK (Software Development Kit) allows developers to create high-quality apps quickly and easily. It provides tools for debugging and profiling, as well as APIs for accessing hardware and software components within the device. The SDK also includes a comprehensive set of libraries for building user interfaces, accessing data sources, and creating animations.

Java

Java is the primary language used for developing Android apps. It is an object-oriented language that is popular due to its strong type safety, stability, and ease of use. Java code is compiled into bytecode that can be executed on any Java Virtual Machine (JVM). This makes it ideal for writing code that can be deployed across multiple platforms. Java is also widely used in web development and other software development platforms.

C++

C++ is another language that can be used for Android development. It is a powerful language with low-level access to system resources, allowing developers to create high-performance applications with minimal code. C++ is often used for game development due to its speed and efficiency. As with Java, C++ code must be compiled into machine code before it can be run on a device.

Kotlin

Kotlin is a relatively new language created by JetBrains and officially supported by Google for Android development. It is a concise language that allows developers to write code quickly and efficiently. Kotlin runs on the JVM, so it can interoperate with existing Java code, making it easier to migrate existing projects to Kotlin. It also features improved type safety over Java and provides many advanced features such as lambdas and coroutines.

Python

Python is a popular scripting language that can also be used for Android development. It is well known for its simple syntax and easy readability, making it a great choice for beginners. Python code must be compiled into bytecode before it can be run on an Android device, but this can be done easily using tools such as PyOxidizer or Pyinstaller. Python provides useful libraries for accessing hardware components such as sensors, cameras, and GPS units, making it an ideal choice for developing IoT applications.

In conclusion, there are several programming languages available for Android application development, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Java is the most popular choice due to its stability and compatibility with existing projects, while C++ offers better performance but requires more complex code. Kotlin provides modern features with improved type safety, while Python allows developers to quickly prototype applications with minimal effort. Ultimately, the best choice of language depends on the project requirements and the experience level of the developer.


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Android Mobile App Development Bundles

Android mobile app development is a process by which a mobile application is created and developed for the Android operating system. Android, developed by Google, is an open source platform used in many devices, such as smartphones and tablets. Android apps are designed using the Android SDK (Software Development Kit), and are written in the Java programming language.

Android bundles are collections of tools and resources that can be used to create Android apps. The core components of an Android bundle include the Android SDK, the Android Virtual Device (AVD), the Android Development Tools (ADT), and the Eclipse IDE. The SDK contains all the necessary libraries, tools, and documentation to develop Android apps. The AVD is a virtual device that can be used to test an app before it is released. The ADT is a set of plug-ins for Eclipse, which makes it easier to create, debug, and deploy Android apps.

An Android bundle also includes platform specific tools such as the Native Development Kit (NDK) for developing native code applications for different versions of Android OS. The NDK allows developers to write code in C/C++ or other languages that are natively supported by the OS. Other platform specific tools include Google Play Services, which allow developers to integrate their app with Google Play store and other Google services; and Firebase Cloud Messaging (FCM), which enables developers to send push notifications to their users.

In addition to these core components, an Android bundle may also include third party libraries and tools such as RxJava, Retrofit, Dagger, and Glide. These libraries and tools provide additional support for developing more complex apps. For example, Retrofit enables developers to easily create web service calls in their app; Dagger makes it easier to manage dependencies; and Glide provides image loading capabilities.

The latest version of Android bundles comes with Google’s own version of Jetpack Compose, a modern UI toolkit designed to make building beautiful user interfaces easier and faster. Jetpack Compose simplifies the creation of UI elements such as buttons, text fields, drop down menus, and more. It also provides built-in support for reactive programming so developers can quickly develop interactive experiences with minimal code.

In order to use an Android bundle, developers must first install the necessary components on their machine. This includes installing the appropriate version of Eclipse IDE and then adding the ADT plugins for Eclipse for developing Android apps. Once this is done, developers can then install the necessary platform specific tools such as NDK or Google Play Services. After installation is complete, developers can then begin developing their app using whatever specific tools they need from the bundle.

Android bundles make it easier for developers to create apps quickly and efficiently by providing all the necessary components in one package. They are great for beginners who are just getting started with app development as they contain all the necessary components in one package without having to search around for individual pieces of software or libraries. Additionally, experienced developers can make use of these bundles to quickly get up to date with the latest technologies available for Android development.


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What are the core components of an Android application?

“Android is an open-source platform, with a diverse set of components and services that provide a powerful, flexible, and secure development environment.” – Hiroshi Lockheimer, Senior Vice President of Android and Chrome at Google

Android apps are a collection of components that work together to create a user experience. These components include activities, services, content providers, broadcast receivers, and fragments. Each component serves a specific purpose and is activated by the system in response to certain events or user actions.

Activity

An activity is a visual component of an Android app responsible for displaying a screen. It is responsible for responding to user interactions such as taps, swipes and scrolls. Activities can be used to display a variety of information and UI elements such as text fields, lists, images and buttons. They can also handle user input and process it accordingly. Activities are also responsible for managing their own lifecycle, which includes creating and destroying views when they are no longer needed.

Service

A service is an application component responsible for performing long-running tasks in the background such as fetching data from the internet or playing music. Services are often used to provide background processes that don’t require user input or any visible UI elements. Services can be started and stopped by other application components or the system itself.

Content Providers

Content providers are application components responsible for providing access to data stored in databases or files. Content providers provide an abstract layer between the data source and the application code that requests the data. This allows applications to query and manipulate data without having direct access to the underlying data source.

Broadcast Receivers

Broadcast receivers are application components that are triggered when certain system events occur or when other applications broadcast messages using Intents. Broadcast receivers can be used to respond to system events or messages from other applications. For example, an alarm clock application could register a broadcast receiver that is triggered when the system time changes.

Fragments

Fragments are pieces of an activity’s UI that can be combined and reused within multiple activities. Fragments allow developers to break up their activities into smaller parts that can be flexibly combined with other fragments. This allows them to create complex UI elements with minimal effort by combining multiple fragments into a single view.

These components work together to create an Android app that performs desired tasks while providing a user friendly interface. When developing an Android app, it is important to understand how these components interact with each other in order to create a well structured and efficient app.


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Creating an Android Project with Android Studio

Why use Android Studio

Android Studio is a powerful, popular, and free open source Integrated Development Environment (IDE) for Android, designed to improve the performance of Android app development. It is a development tool used by developers to create, test, and deploy their apps on the Android platform. It consists of a number of components which make up the overall development environment.

Structural Layout of Android Studio

The structural layout of the Android studio consists of the following components:

Code Editor

The main component of Android Studio is the code editor, which allows developers to write, edit, and debug code. This editor has features like syntax highlighting and auto-complete which makes it easier to code quickly and accurately. Additionally, the code editor has built-in refactoring capabilities, making it easy to refactor existing code.

Layout Editor

Another key component of Android Studio is the Layout Editor. This allows developers to design the layout of their user interface using a drag-and-drop interface. It includes several different views such as text view, button view, and image view that allow developers to easily create custom layouts for their apps.

SDK Manager

Android Studio also includes the SDK Manager. This is used to download and install different versions of the Android SDK for use in development. The SDK Manager also contains various tools such as the Android Emulator, which allows developers to test their apps on different versions of Android without actually having a physical device.

Gradle Build Tool

The Gradle Build Tool is also included in Android Studio. This tool is used to build, test, and deploy apps on the Android platform. It automates many aspects of the build process, such as compiling source code and running unit tests. Gradle also provides support for multi-module projects, allowing developers to build large projects with multiple modules.

APK Analyzer

The last component of Android Studio is the APK Analyzer. This tool allows developers to analyze their APKs (Android packages) and view details about their files such as size, memory usage, and permissions. The APK Analyzer also provides valuable insight into how an app is structured and can help developers optimize their code for improved performance.

Overall, Android Studio provides a comprehensive development environment which makes it easy for developers to create high-quality apps quickly and efficiently. It includes several components which all work together to provide an efficient workflow for developing apps on the Android platform.

Component Activation

Objects managing component activation in Android software development is an important part of the overall Android development process. Component activation refers to the ability of a component to interact with a user or other components in the system. This interaction can be in the form of an input or output, or it can be a combination of both. Component activation is essential for providing users with a full functionality of their Android device.

The objects that manage component activation are known as Service Components. Service components are responsible for responding to user requests, as well as providing data and services to other components. They are also responsible for handling system events and providing feedback to the user.

Service components are typically written in Java, but they can also be written in other languages such as C++, Kotlin, and Python. Java is the preferred language for Android development because it is a highly versatile language, and it is well supported by the Android SDK. Java is also an object-oriented language, which makes it easier for developers to create and maintain Service Components.

Intents

The Android system provides several mechanisms for activating and deactivating Service components. The most common mechanism is through Intents sent from activities or services. Intents allow activities and services to start/stop other components in the system based on certain conditions or criteria. For example, an activity can send an intent that tells a service to start when a certain button is pressed, or a service can send an intent that tells an activity to finish when a certain task has been completed.

Intents in Android app development are a messaging system that allows components of an application to communicate with each other. Intents can be used to initiate activities, broadcast events, start services, and deliver data between activities. They provide a way for the user to interact with the app, allowing them to switch between activities or services, send data to other apps, and get results back from the action. Intents are also used to register broadcast receivers, which allow apps to respond to system-wide events such as the device booting up or an incoming SMS message.

Other Component Activation Methods

Another way of activating/deactivating Service components is through Broadcast Receivers. Broadcast Receivers listen for specific system events such as network changes, alarms, battery level changes, etc., and they can then send Intents as responses to these events. Broadcast receivers can also be used to start/stop activities and services based on certain criteria such as time or location. Broadcast receivers are activated by intents as well. When a broadcast receiver is created, it listens for specific intents that match its filter. When such an intent arrives, the broadcast receiver will receive it and execute its code accordingly.

Finally, Service Components can also be managed through Activity Lifecycle methods such as onStart(), onStop(), onPause(), onResume(), etc. These methods allow developers to control how their application behaves during different stages of the application lifecycle such as when the application is launched, stopped, paused, resumed, etc. By using these lifecycle methods, developers can ensure that their applications are always running optimally while also providing users with optimal experiences when using their applications.

Importance of Component Activation

Objects managing component activation in Android software development is an essential part of developing applications for Android devices. By utilizing various techniques such as intents, broadcast receivers, and Activity lifecycle methods, developers can ensure that their applications are running efficiently and providing users with meaningful experiences when using their Android devices.

Importance of Component Activation

A manifest file in Android app development is an XML file that provides essential information about the app to the Android system. It contains information about the app’s package, activities, services, content providers, broadcast receivers, permissions and hardware features. It also specifies the minimum level of the Android API that the app requires and lists any libraries that the app needs to be linked against. The manifest file is included in the root directory of the app and is required for every app.

Declaring Components

Declaring components in Android app development is the process of registering a component of an Android application with the Android system. This component can either be an Activity, a Service, a Broadcast Receiver, or a Content Provider. Declaring components allows the system to access and interact with them. This is a necessary step for the Android system to properly manage the application and its components. When an application is installed, its components are declared in the AndroidManifest.xml file to inform the system which components are part of the application. Once declared, these components can be launched and interacted with by other applications or by the system itself.

Use the following components to declare all the components:

  • <activity> for activities.
  • <service> for services.
  • <receiver> for broadcast receivers.
  • <provider> for content providers.

Declaring Capabilities

Intent filters in an Android app allow the app to be launched from other parts of the system, like from the app launcher, from a web link, from another app, etc. They are also used to identify activities that can respond to particular types of intent. By declaring intent filters for your activities, you make it possible for other apps to directly start your component and pass data to it. This also makes your activities show up in the share menu when users try to send content from other apps. Declaring intent filters is important for any Android app developer because it helps them create a better user experience.

Declaring App Requirements

Declaring app requirements in Android app development is the process of specifying the necessary components and permissions that are needed to build and run an application on the Android platform. This includes setting up the target SDK version, minimum SDK version, compiling SDK version, hardware components, and other system requirements. Additionally, developers must declare any permissions their app needs in order to use specific features of the Android platform, such as location services or access to a device’s contacts list. Following the proper app requirements when developing an Android app is essential for ensuring that it runs smoothly and efficiently on each device it is installed on. These requirements are declared in an App’s manifest file, so that whenever a user goes to Google Play Store to search an app, Google Play filters and displays only those apps whose declared device requirements match that of the user’s device.

App Permissions Declaration

The app permissions declaration stage is an important step in the Android app development process. It allows developers to specify what types of data and features their app will access and use, and how that data and feature usage will be managed. This helps ensure that users are aware of what data and features their apps are accessing, as well as how the apps are managing that data and feature usage.

When a developer creates an app for Android, they must declare the permissions that the app needs in order to function properly. These permissions can range from access to personal information such as contacts or location data, to access to system resources such as the microphone or camera. This declaration is done through a manifest file, which is a special text file included with the app that specifies what permissions the app requires.

When a user downloads an app from the Google Play Store, they are presented with a list of permissions that the app requires in order to function properly. This list of permissions helps give users an understanding of what type of data and features the app will access and use, as well as how those data and feature usages will be managed. In addition to this list, users can also read any additional information provided by the developer about the permission requests.

In order for a permission to be granted, it must be declared in the manifest file. This means that developers must make sure to include all of the necessary permissions in their manifest file before submitting their app for review. If a permission is not declared, then it may be rejected by Google during the review process.

Once a user has accepted a permission request, they can also view and manage their permissions from within the “App Permissions” section of the device settings menu. From here, users can view which apps have requested specific permissions, as well as revoke any permission requests that they no longer wish to grant.

What types of app permissions are there?

Android app permissions are the access rights provided by an Android application to access the app’s data and resources, as well as the user’s personal information. Permissions allow developers to create apps that can interact with the user’s device, such as accessing the camera or contacts list. Android app permissions are divided into two categories: Normal permissions and Dangerous permissions.

  1. Normal permissions do not require a user’s approval and are given automatically when installing an app. These are generally considered safe, as they don’t involve any sensitive data or access to your device’s hardware. Examples of normal permissions include internet access, access to the device’s vibration feature, or access to view network connections.
  2. Dangerous permissions are more sensitive and require user approval before the app can access them. Examples of dangerous permissions include access to the device’s location, contacts, camera, microphone, call logs and more. Apps that have permission to access a user’s location or contacts could potentially misuse this data for malicious purposes.

Components Enforcement of Permissions

  1. Activity permission enforcement: This is a permission setting that allows developers to specify which activities are allowed to start in their application. This ensures that only the activities listed in the manifest can start, as long as they have the correct intent filter.
  2. Service permission enforcement: This is a permission setting that allows developers to specify which services are allowed to start in their application. This ensures that only the services listed in the manifest can start, as long as they have the correct intent filter.
  3. Broadcast Receiver permission enforcement: This is a permission setting that allows developers to specify which broadcast receivers are allowed to listen for broadcasts in their application. This ensures that only the broadcast receivers listed in the manifest can receive broadcasts, as long as they have the correct intent filter.
  4. Content Provider permission enforcement: This is a permission setting that allows developers to specify which content providers are allowed to access data in their applications. This ensures that only the content providers listed in the manifest can access data, as long as they have the correct intent filter.

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Best Practices for Android App Development

Mobile app development is an ever-evolving industry, and this is especially true for Android app development. The Android platform has grown significantly in recent years, and as such, the best practices for developing Android applications are constantly changing. To keep up with the latest trends in mobile app development, it is important for developers to be aware of the best practices for developing Android apps.

  1. Make use of Google’s Material Design guidelines. Material Design is a design language developed by Google to help developers create intuitive user interfaces for their apps. By following the guidelines, developers can create apps that are aesthetically appealing, easy to navigate and provide a great user experience.
  2. Make sure that the code is efficient and well-structured. This means that the code should be organized into classes and functions that can easily be reused and modified when needed. Additionally, code should be written in a way that makes it easy to debug and maintain.
  3. Developers should ensure that their app is optimized for different screen sizes and resolutions. As the Android platform supports a range of different devices and screen sizes, it is important that developers ensure their app looks and works great on all devices. Additionally, developers should also keep in mind the different versions of Android that are available, as some features may not be available on older versions of the OS.
  4. Developers should use tools such as Gradle, which is a build system used to automate tasks related to building, testing and deploying Android apps. Gradle allows developers to easily set up projects and define tasks that can be used to automate processes such as compilation and testing. This can help save both time and effort when developing Android apps.
  5. Developers should make sure that they are using the latest version of the Android SDK (Software Development Kit). As the SDK is constantly being updated, it is important for developers to stay up to date with the latest version in order to take advantage of the latest features available in the SDK. Additionally, this will also ensure that any new features added to the SDK are supported by their app.
  6. Developers should also consider using third-party tools such as Firebase or Fabric in order to monitor and test their app’s performance. These tools can be used to track errors or crashes that occur during runtime and provide useful insights into how users interact with their app. Additionally, these tools can also be used for analytics purposes such as tracking usage trends or identifying areas of improvement within an app’s design or functionality.

By following these best practices for Android app development, developers can ensure they are creating apps that are optimized for all devices and provide a great user experience. Additionally, by taking advantage of third-party tools such as Firebase or Fabric, developers can gain valuable insights into how users interact with their apps which can help them create even better applications in the future.