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5 Steps: How to start Android app development for beginners

Android app development for beginners

Android app development for beginners is quite easy but it needs right guidance and some skills. You might have an amazing app idea to turn into reality and show to the world, but lack of expertise can be a hurdle. This issue is resolved here as step by step tutorial is given that is quite simple to follow. You don’t have to be a university graduate in programming or information technology to create an android app. According to the fact, Android is the most widely used OS in phones, tablets and many other gadgets today with more an more apps coming out every day. These apps are related to every category of life and you can also master this skill if you have inclination for it.

Because coding is hard to learn and with android app development, it can become even harder especially for the beginner who has no clue where to take initiative from. For that, learning Java is essential with installing specific software that work differently.

On the whole, there is SDK (Software development kit), an IDE (Integrated development environment, JDK (Java software development and a virtual device for testing purpose are required to build an android app from scratch. There is a complete set up that has to be installed.

This is an easily understandable guide for beginners who wish to create an app for Android devices. Steps are mentioned below:

  1. Download Android Studio

Android app development for beginnersAn IDE or integrated development environment is required for programming in most language. Android Studio is the most widely used IDE for Android development which is offered by Google. Simply download it and you are done. IDE gives main user interface for the app where you are going to enter code as you are not going to type in notepad. It will also identify errors and blunders in the process that you are making. It offers great suggestions and allows operate and run your developed apps smoothly in a convenient manner. It makes files that you require and gives basic layouts, saving lots of effort as well as time.

Android Studio is specifically designed for Android development. There are some other IDEs too that work differently and support other app developments as well apart from Android. After downloading and installing Android Studio, you need to go to step two.

  1. Setting up Android Studio

Android app development for beginners

After installation of Android Studio, the time comes to setting it up. Before running it, install Java on computer to ensure the IDE works perfectly. Install JDK (Java development kit). Java is programming language used to develop apps. Its important to install JDK to enable Android Studio compile and interpret code.

Launch Android Studio by clicking it. It gives a menu after opening up. There are some options given in the menu. SDK manager is where Android SDK is updated to support latest versions.

Three things are important while using Android Studio to develop apps.

  1. Android Studio that is an IDE giving an interface for coding
  2. The code you will write in Java
  3. SDK, that is accessed via java code to do proceed further
  1. Start a new project

Android app development for beginners

When samples are installed, go back to first page where Android Studio is loaded. Choose Star a new Android Project and enter the name of the app with company domain. This will be used in combination to make package name in this format:

Com.companyname.appname

The package will become the complied file known as APK (Android Package File) that is finally going to be uploaded to the Play Store. Avoid using comic or funny phrases and words. The last field is the directory where all files related to the app are saved. It is wise to have backup of the code so you can save online. Then choose the device type for which app is going to be developed. Select Phone and Tablet option among other options like TV, Wear and Glass. In the beginning, its suggested to stay limited to phone and tablet.

Another option to select is Minimum SDK which is the lowest Android version supported. Don’t select latest Android version here because all Android users may not have the updated version of Android. Choosing default option is also fine. On next page, there is option to choose the way app looks in the beginning. It is the main Activity Module that is the main page of the app. Here you can decide whether app title will remain on top of the screen or user interface will fill the whole page.

Since you are a beginner, its better to start off with something simpler and sleek. Choose Basic Activity which is going to be your app. Click Next to go to last few options. Now choose the name for activity and layout name like ‘Main Activity’ or something sensible.

The layout name is file that will determine layout of an activity. It’s a separate code that runs with the main activity code to define where menus and images go and what fonts are used.

  1. Creating real app

Android app development for beginners

When app opens, there should be a directory tree on the left side with all files and folders related to the app and picture of a phone saying Hello World in the center. The tab is ‘activity_main.xml’ is showing on the display. You will see a second XML file as well if you chose Basic Activity at the time of project start. Android Studio does not display XML code but a rendering of how layout is going to appear. It’s a visual editor like web development software. There is an option of widgets on the left that can be added to the app. Delete Hello World widget and change the text on button to Hello if you like. Change id on the button to ‘button1’. Choose text size and color of your choice in the bottom.

  1. Add code and run the app

Android app development for beginners

Open MainActivity.java. This code defines your app behavior. Now add passage of code.

Public void buttonOnClick(View v) {

Button button1 = (Button) v;

( (Button) v).setText(‘’Hello!’’);

}

Anything following voidbuttonOnClick will be performed when a user clicks on the button.

There is a word ‘Import’ at top of the page, click that. There should be a line importandroid.widget.Button. It should appear by itself when you typed last bit but you can also add it yourself if it does not. In content_main.xml menu click on the button and then select OnClick line of code that you had written from drop down menu. It is for the purpose of associating code section with button.

Now run the app by selecting ‘run app’ from drop down menu and there should be AVD installed. Follow the steps to launch emulator running app.