Android Application Development


Android Application Development

Android is a multitasking mobile operating system (OS) that runs on a wide range of devices including smartphones, tablets, readers, TVs, set-top boxes, and even domestic robots. The Linux-based system was developed by Android Inc. before being purchased and popularised by Google. Android’s release in 2008 made a big splash in the tech industry and it quickly became the leader amongst mobile OSs. It’s thanks to Android in particular that modern smartphones can be considered pocket-sized computers, a dramatic evolution from their mobile phone predecessors of just a few years prior.

Android is popular for its versatility and user-friendliness. It takes the average user about an hour to get acquainted with the basics of the system. Another key advantage is its configurability. Almost any aspect of the interface can be easily customised thanks to the wide range of available applications. Don’t like the appearance, icons, or ringtone? Go to Google Play, download a suitable application, and you can have everything your way within a matter of seconds.

The process of developing mobile apps for Android

Developing an Android application is not just about creating it and adding it to Google Play. The process requires meticulous planning, thorough research, and a clear focus. Typically, the entire development cycle consists of 5 stages:

  1. Planning. Before starting development, it is important to define the target audience, purposes, and required functions of your Android application. It’s also necessary to conduct comprehensive market research to ensure that your application has competitive potential. At this stage, the ToR for the development of a mobile app are being prepared.
  2. Design. This is where a mockup of the user interface, i.e. the application’s appearance, is created. After approval, a designer starts working with the mockup. He/she prepares the final look that users will see on their Android devices.
  3. Development. Programmers create an Android application based on the design approved in the previous stage.
  4. Testing. Once development is complete, the application must be tested. QA engineers check the beta version thoroughly and make sure that it functions properly and without any errors.
  5. Launch and maintenance. After testing, you can safely release the application to the market by uploading it to Google Play. However, the work doesn’t end there. As for any other software, the application has to be maintained. You should provide ongoing technical support, improve its functionality, and regularly add new features.

Android app development process

What the Android app development phase includes

Development is about bringing your project concept to life. At this stage, the Android development team will work on 3 main parts of the project simultaneously:

  1. Back end. This is the server side, thanks to which the Android application functions. Back-end development includes working on the authentication of user accounts, setting up interactions with them, integration with social networks, push notifications, and other functions.
  2. Application programming interface (API). This is one of the main components when creating an Android application. It connects the external and internal interfaces of a mobile app.
  3. Front end. This is the external interface, or the side that users interact with. Front-end development is primarily concerned with design elements. A well-designed external interface enables the application to be displayed properly on screens of any size and orientation.

Languages used for Android app development

Developing an Android application involves creating a complicated multifunctional product for the OS based on the Linux kernel. The market for such applications is constantly growing, and so services and professionals in this sphere of programming are in high demand. The immense popularity of Android applications can be attributed to the fact that over half of all smart devices on the market currently use this OS. An impressive range of services, editors, games, and messaging apps are created specifically for Android. With such a variety, the choice of programming languages to use is wide.

Programming languages for Android apps

Java

Java is the primary language used for programming. It’s even called the official language of Android, as it is used in all OS documentation and courses. Many programmers find Java very convenient for creating Android applications. But there is a significant downside to Java in that it requires a lot of time and experience to use. The language was created in 1995 and is relatively complex compared to newer languages. However, it is impossible to succeed in this field of app development without it. When developing Java applications for Android, manifest XML files are used in addition to classes with code.

Kotlin

Kotlin is one of the newest languages; it was developed in 2011 and released to the public in 2016. Despite this, the language has already gained significant popularity. Google has even named it the second official language for Android app development. Kotlin allows programmers to conveniently create full-featured native apps. They experience very few problems using Kotlin; however, this may also be thanks to the IntelliJ IDEA environment. Other features include Java compatibility, zero performance reduction, and zero increase in file sizes.

C#

C# is an object-oriented application-level language developed by Microsoft engineers in 2000. Although it was created for their own .NET Framework platform, it is perfectly suited for developing Android mobile apps. This programming language adopted many useful features from Java while eliminating most of its shortcomings.

C / C++

Google provided developers with two environments: SDK for working with Java code and NDK for native code in C and C++. However, it is impossible to develop a full-fledged application using only these two languages. Developers can only use them to write a library that can then be connected to the application base via Java.

Python

Despite the fact that Python isn’t used throughout the entire cycle of creating an Android application, it has been adapted for some operations too. There are plenty of tools to help compile Python code into a required state. In addition, a variety of libraries allow programmers to create optimised interfaces in accordance with material design guidelines.

Android app development environment

Android Studio is considered the most common integrated development environment for Android. It’s based on IntelliJ IDEA software. Android Studio includes the following features and functions:

  • Advanced layout editor;
  • Automatic application building using Gradle;
  • A static source code analyser;
  • Code redesigning;
  • An integrated ProGuard tool;
  • A tool for signing executable code;
  • Templates for Android basic components and layouts;
  • Google Cloud Platform suite support.

Adding an application to Google Play

To publish an app on Google Play, you need to take the following steps:

  1. Create a developer account in the Google Play Console.
  2. Issue a privacy policy document that specifies liability for the product and its content, as well as the obligation to ensure users’ privacy and data security.
  3. Prepare promotional materials.
  4. Provide the build with a digital signature certificate. This is required to identify the developer on Google Play so that only he/she is able to update or modify versions of the app.
  5. Customise receiving payments within the app.
  6. Send the complete build to Google Play.

The best applications and games on Google Play

In December 2021, Google announced the top apps and games of the year as per annual tradition. Some of them made our life more convenient, others added more fun to it, and together they set trends for the rest of the store’s products.

Apps of the year: ‘Balance: Meditation & Sleep’ and ‘Meditation | Down Dog’

Balance: Meditation & Sleep for Android📱
Balance: Meditation & Sleep by Elevate Labs is the best in 2021, according to the store. It’s a personal meditation coach that analyses a user’s experience, goals, and preferences. Based on this information, it selects a 10-day plan, exercises, and audio library. Balance: Meditation & Sleep is free for 7 days, and then it is monetised via subscriptions for €5.99 per month or €34.99 per year, as well as a lifetime subscription for a one-time payment of €349.99.

Meditation | Down Dog for Android📱
Meditation | Down Dog by Yoga Buddhi Co. is the best in 2021 by British users’ choice. It’s a meditation assistant with individual settings, too. It allows you to create meditation sessions with accompaniment, before bedtime, on the go, as well as to choose 6 voice options and calming music. Meditation | Down Dog is free for 7 days, and then it is monetised via subscriptions for €4.29 per month or €34.99 per year.

Game of the year: Pokémon UNITE

Pokémon UNITE for Android📱
Pokémon UNITE by The Pokemon Company is the best in 2021, both according to the store’s choice and British users’ choice. It’s a multiplayer online battle arena where 2 teams of 3, 4, or 5 players fight. Unlike most MOBAs, they don’t destroy the opponent’s base, but instead get points here. To do so, they need to collect a resource from wild Pokémons and pump up their own, then break into one of the goal zones on the enemy’s half of the field, and make a cast.

Pokémon UNITE is free and is monetised via in-game purchases of Pokémons, items, and game currency, Aeos gems. Gems are sold in different sets for €0.99–99.99.

Ordering an Android application

A high-quality Android application will help your company bring joy to existing clients, attract a new audience, and increase brand loyalty. A successful application can not only become a useful advertising tool, but also grow into an independent income-generating business.

How much Android app development costs

Our qualified team is ready to take on Android app projects of any complexity. We approach each task with skill, competence, and efficiency. We will create a unique business model and a convenient, user-friendly interface in addition to assisting with marketing promotion and placement on Google Play and other Android stores.

Creating an Android application consists of the following stages:

  1. Writing terms of reference (if you don’t already have them) — from 18 hours.
  2. Business analysis and specification — from 20 hours.
  3. UI and UX design — about 35 hours.
  4. Back-end development — over 40 hours, depending on the required functionality.
  5. Front-end development — over 30 hours.
  6. Testing — about 20 hours, depending on functionality.

Based on this data, the cost of developing an Android application starts at $20,000. This is the cost of the MVP, and it could be higher depending on the level of the application’s complexity. Please note that after the development is completed, the application must be maintained, and this service isn’t included in the initial development cost.

Polygant has been developing Android applications for 10 years. Each project is unique, because we work from the wishes of customers and adapt to the activity specifics. Submit a request, and after a detailed consultation, we will get started on your project!

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