Using Android development kit is highly essential if you want to develop an Android app.
Android OS is built upon Linux kernel and runs on most of the smartphones and tabs.
The latest version is Android 7 Nougat, which will gradually become available for more and more devices over the coming months.
Marshmallow is 6.x, Lollipop is 5.x, and KitKat is version 4.4.x, with 4.3, 4.2 and 4.1 all coming under the codename name Jelly Bean.
Android platform is based on Linux with a set of core C/C+ + libraries.
Android apps are written in Java and run on Android’s own Java virtual machine known as Dalvik Virtual Machine.
This DVM is optimized to work on mobile phones.
Before you begin development of app, there are software, tools and development packages that must be properly installed.
Your computer requirements must be fully met in order to get the kit install.
Installing Android development kit
Installing required software for Android takes almost 30 to 60 minutes depending upon network downloading speed. There must be 5 to 10 GB free disk space in computer to make sure it gets enough space.
Its time to install Android Studio which is IDE based a popular Java IDE and SDK libraries.
Java Development Kit
First of all, install JDK or Java Development Kit.
It should be above 1.7 or at least 1.7. It will take lot of time to install completely. When it is done, you are ready to go ahead.
First see system requirements for Android Studio. Now download Android Studio for Widows.
Run download installer and follow instructions appearing on the screen. Accept the defaults. Installation is complete. There should be 5 GB or more disk space.
Android Studio is installed in C drive.
Add a few basic SDK packages to run the apps. Adding lots of SDK packages is quite time consuming. Images also take huge disk space which is above 10 GB per API level.
But you can also go for small set of SDK package. You can also copy SDK instead of downloading during installation process.
For Windows, follow these steps:
Launch Android Studio and check ‘I do not have previous version of Android Studio’.
Setup wizard will download more SDK file components.
Let it complete. Click Finish.
Now select Configure, SDK manager, SDK tools. Check Android Support Library, Intel x86 Emulator Accelerator and Google USB Driver.
Finally > Apply.
Launch Android Studio. It will download more SDK components.
Let it complete then click Finish. Select Configure, SDK Manager.
If there is an error, copy SDK location ‘Users/…LibraryAndroid/SDK’ and select Configure, Project defaults, project structure in Android SDK Location. Paste here.
Select Configure, SDK Manager, Launch Standalone SDK Manager.
Click Deselect All or it will take several hours to finish installation of all packages.
Check these packages are ‘installed’ or check them to get installed.
In Tools screen, Android SDK tools, Android SDK platform tools, Android SK Build-tools (highest version).
In Android 6.0 check SDK platform, System Image.
In Extras see these options: Android Studio Library, Google Repository, Intelx86 Emulator Accelerator.
Click ‘Install n packages’.
SDK will install under “~/Library/Android/sdk”. This procedure is for Mac OS.
How to open SDK Manager
To open SDK manager, drag Android executable into terminal Window. Click Enter.
When it is open, make sure to install these packages and other relevant ones:
Platform, Build, The Android Debugging Bridge.
Tools work with Platform but can also be updated separately if required. These are JOBB, ProGuard and zipalign.
JOBB helps create encrypted and unencrypted APK expansions in OBB format. ProGuard removes unnecessary items from app and renames classes.
SDK tools are used regardless of Android version supported. These are build-tools, image tools, debugging-tools and some others. Android Debugging Bridge (ADB) and fastboost are also important if device is stuck somewhere.
Fastboot is sued to wipe partitions if something occurs. The procedure is simple.
ADB can be used for troubleshooting purpose with device and apps.
ADB provides an interface which is terminal-based and is used for interacting with file system in phone.
Because Android is Linux-based OS, the only way to obtain is the command-line.
Manipulate root access is required to perform advanced operations on the device with the help of root access.
These things are possible on the device using terminal emulator.
It is tough to execute complex commands like smaller screen.
ADB works like bridge between your computer and phone.
When all of these are completely installed, you are ready to begin developing app.
New trend in Android development
The latest trend is that Eclipse is no more used where Android Developer Tools are downloaded separately.
Google has created Android Studio that has made job easier through one click install of all components and tools required for developing Android apps.
If you need to install Android SDK only, that is not a big issue. It can also be configured with ease.
Now, you can create simple apps on your own without hiring or getting services from a professional app developer.
To understand all procedure, you can also view video tutorials online or read available content.
If something goes wrong ask a friend to guide you about how to install the development kit.
Watching tutorial is better as it is more helpful and enables you follow step by step.
Procedure for Windows and Mac OS is a bit different so follow it accordingly.
Make sure there is enough disk space in C drive and internet speed is high.
The entire kit is going to be installed for one time only and you will not have to do this every time you need to use like all other downloaded software.
So, do it carefully and with proper techniques.
It is better to have one computer with high specs spare for development purpose only to keep it clutter-free remove all other software and files.
It will make working with development kit easier and smooth.
Sometimes too many files are downloaded that cause confusion.
So, keep a computer for Android development only if you want to develop apps off and on.
There are other development kits as well but the Android Studio made by Google is mostly used now because of ease and convenience.
Hope you enjoyed this guide on Android Development Kit.