It is less than ten years that the Android operating system has been used commercially, yet with its presence in millions of devices across the world, more and more people want to learn how they can go about programming. The Android operating system is used on mobile devices (and other supported platforms including tablets) for applications.
Its significant growth can be attributed to its ability to help a user generate income through the creation of applications. Creating these applications requires some knowledge of programming.
Android stands out from other operating systems for mobile devices and other supported platforms due to its ability to be customized. It allows for the creativity and development of applications at a developers’ pace.
Introduction of Android:
The mobile phone has dramatically changed from the simple communication device that it used to be. In the past, mobile phones were used for two basic modes of communication, which were making calls and sending text messages. Today, mobile phones are like mini-computers, able to execute a variety of tasks and even to control lives.
With the advent of more technology, there is a new type of mobile device termed as the smartphone. A smartphone is more than a mobile phone, and that is because it has more capabilities. On a smartphone, you are able to download applications (referred to as apps), and these applications have an extensive range of capabilities.
In order to develop and use these apps, an operating system needed to be created. That is where the story of Android begins.
Google and a host of other companies came together and developed the Open Handset Alliance. Open Handset Alliance is responsible for the creation and development of Android. Android is the Linux-based operating system that is used on mobile devices, which include smartphones and tablets. It is open-source, meaning that it is freely available to everyone.
Using the Android operating system, programmers are able to develop a host of applications that can be run on any devices which are powered by Android.
The first commercial version of Android was Android 1.0, which was released in September 2008. There have been several updates to this version over the years, one of the more recent being 4.1 Jelly Bean.
As Android is open-source, the source codes are available under free licenses. The Apache License version 2.0 is what Google uses to publish a significant amount of the code, and the rest of the code can be found under the General Public License version 2 from Linux. The Android operating system competes with the Apple operating system (iOS).
Introduction of Android Programming:
The demand for Android programmers has risen through the years as the Android OS begins to give iOS more competition in the apps market. With over one billion Android devices on the planet and counting, it is not hard to see why more programmers are starting to make apps for Android as a priority rather than as a secondary choice to making iOS apps.
Android has other advantages when it comes to programming. For example, the Android platform is open source and has by far the largest share of the smart devices market in the world. Android policies on app submission and device provisioning are very open and carry very few restrictions. This means that when you complete building your own app you and your friends will be able to use it immediately.
For programmers who are used to the iOS platform, learning how to program for Android should be easy. Though they differ substantially, they are similar in many ways as well. It will be an advantage to have on your next project. By knowing how to program for both platforms, you can create an application that exploits all their strengths and discards their weaknesses. The world is not just apple products anymore, the Android OS is taking over the smart devices market, and knowing how to program for both platforms is going to be invaluable.
You do not need much for you to start Android development and all the tools you need are freely available on the internet. The following list of software is all you need:
- The latest Java Development Kit (JDK)
- Android Studio SDK
- Eclipse IDE for Java Developers (optional)
- Android Development Tolls (optional Eclipse plugin)
With more than 70% of the smartphones in the world, in 190 countries, using the Android operating system, it is no wonder that more and more people are learning Android programming.
As the programming language used in Android programming is Java, it would be good if you had a background or some basic knowledge on the subject, but if you do not, there are plenty of tutorials available online that can help you grasp the basics.
Users are more likely to use the app and recommend it to others if it has an excellent user interface. Once you have managed to develop your Android application, you can begin to sell them through app stores online. The most popular app stores are google play and amazon appstore. App marketing plays crucial role in app success.