Monday, March 28, 2016

Getting started as an Android Developer

Android's dominating market share, its open source license to device manufacturers, and its open source development model make it a great choice for starting out as a mobile developer. 
It can be expected that the demand for Android developers will continue to grow. 

As an Android Developer you can develop for a wide array of devices ranging from phones and tablets to  wearables, home  and vehicle systems. You will develop a variety of apps such as games, news, photography, education or shopping apps, to name a few. 

To develop Android Apps you  will use Android Studio, which is now the official IDE for developing Android Apps. Be sure to check out the many helpful samples which come with the SDK. 
Android Studio and the SDK are available for free download and cross platform compatible. 

Prerequisite Coding Skills:
In order to be successful in learning the Android programming skills, you should already have background in the following languages:

Java:  You need to have solid programmings basic skills in Java and also be versed with  Object Oriented Programming in  Java.   

XML: (eXtensible Markup Language) is used to store data. 

SQL:  You need to have basic working knowledge of databases, such as writing CRUD  queries.  (Android comes with the popular embedded SQLite database).

Ways to learn to develop for Android:

For the most basic introduction see Android's Building Your First App 
If you are self motivated you can try using the Udacity Android Beginner course:

If you are based in Seattle, Seattle Central College is one of several venues in the Seattle area where you can take an instructor led Android class.  I will be teaching the next session in Spring 16 quarter. For registration and information visit the college website and search for ITC 162. 


If you are looking for a book, I highly recommend the book we use in my Android class: Murach's Android Programming, 2nd Edition.

Also, consider joining meetup groups in your area - check out meetup.com and search for Android and Mobile development meetups.  In Seattle you can join Seattle Android Developers GDG, for example. 

In addition, there are numerous online forums and social media 

outlets where you can follow and participate in the latest Android 

news and updates.


Deploying and monetizing your app:

You can distribute your app through a marketplace such as Google Play, Amazon Appstore or directly to users via website or email. At this time there is a $25 registration fee to register with Google Play. 

In house or contract Android developer career path:

There is also a great demand for contract or in house Android developers. Some of the core skills required for entry level Android developers include experience programming with Java, using the Android SDK, Android Studio, Gradle, and Git as well as familiarity with the software development life cycle and agile methodologies.

Learning Android programming and keeping up with constant updates from Google can be challenging, but it is also fun and rewarding.












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