Is Android development hard? The right books gave us success

By | September 30, 2011

barkdogbark full Android mobile image We have now successfully developed 5 applications and released them to the Google Android Market. You can find all of our Android applications here in one location. Is Android development hard? Well despite that we have numerous applications completed, I feel we are in the beginning stages of our Android mobile development understanding. The recent release of the Google TV Addon for the Android SDK has really peeked my interest and I definitely intend to develop something for the Google TV in the near future. In addition, we have some advanced application ideas that we are still struggling to complete and release.

Is Android development hard?

Since we have been successful with over 8000+ downloads and counting of our applications, the question I’m most often asked now is whether Android development is hard. Well my answer is usually depends. I was a seasoned Java developer before I got started so for me it wasn’t that difficult of a transition. Development for Android is in Java using common tools like Eclipse of which I already had experience in. So from that perspective it was not hard….for me. If your a complete programming novice then it would be difficult for you. You really need to understand Java, the Eclipse user interface, XML, CSS and HTML to have a good start for Android development. Some graphic design experience would be a great help as well. Well, here are a couple of books I recommend you read if you are ready to dive into Android application development.

How to make android apps. Recommended Reading

I found the book Android 3.0 Application Development CookBook to be extremely useful and definitely helped me get our Android applications released quickly. I definitely learn better by working through examples and this book is packed with them. The authors wrote the book in a straight forward and easy to understand manner by taking you step by step with highlighted important details and screenshots. Like I mentioned above, we now have 5 applications in the Google app store. We also have one deployed and one pending in the Amazon App Store. This book was a key part to getting them completed and deployed successfully.

I really can’t tell you how many hours of searching Google for answers that this book saved me. Specifically the sections on phone state monitoring which I could not get to work using the examples I found online. With this book I was able to enhance our dog barking application to now monitor phone state in a manner of minutes versus the hours I had spent trying to get the Google examples found online to work. This application was initially rejected from the Amazon developer store due to the lack of this feature so now I expect it to be approved in the near future!

Anyway, I definitely recommend you check it out if you like a straight forward book with detailed examples. It will help you get your apps deployed quickly based on working code.

I grabbed this book early on because of the cool Android examples it had in it. It was definitely beneficial in getting my first couple of Android apps out the door and helped me gain confidence in developing apps for the Droid.

This was my very first Android book so it is appropriately titled Hello Android for me. The book is constantly being updated and continues to be a strong source of reference when I’m working through development of an idea.

The Pro Android Media book above I picked up to help me develop a fireplace application I’m still in the process of developing. Little did I know that this book would be a great help in getting me to understand how to read barcodes and draw on images. There are a couple of applications in development that are a direct result of techniques taught in this book.

Tools of the Trade

When I first started my Android development, my HTC Hero Sprint phone was my only device for testing and development. However I quickly realized how limited I was with this device since it runs an older version of Android (1.5) and is “processor challenged” when running intense applications.

Fortunately I was able to step up my development game slightly with the purchase of the GTablet by ViewSonic. I am not running HoneyComb on this tablet at the moment but hope that it will be able to upgrade with any issues to at least version 3.2. Right now it is running Android version 2.2.

Well I hope this information is helpful to you if you were worried whether Android development was hard. If you have any questions please comment below and I will do my best to assist. Thanks and happy coding!

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