Android Development: Tips, Tricks, and Tactics

From one android developer to another 🙂

Based on a modified version of the Linux kernel and other open-source software, Android is specifically made for smaller touchscreen devices such as smartphones but now a lot of devices are running efficiently on Android, like Smart Watches, TVs, Camera, Car Audio Systems and more. The market for Android apps has grown tremendously over the years and to cater to this demand it is very important that the apps are made efficient and optimum to run with Android and to give a better user experience and smooth user interface.

It takes a lot of effort to be a successful Android developer. You need passion, dedication, and hard work to achieve the best in this Job. Here are some tips from my experience that helped me and will definitely help you to improve your skills in Android development —

Keep up with the Trends

Android is growing every day in means of technology and features. New technologies are coming every day and millions of apps are getting uploaded to the play store with varied features. But among the vast sea of apps, only a handful are successful and able to get user attention. Hence unless you follow the latest trends and understand the user pain points you might just be building another mediocre app with the same features as every other app available.

If you want your app to get user attention and grow by multi-folds it is very important that you understand what made those other apps successful! And there’s only one way to do that — extensive trend research:

  • What functionality is being used?
  • Design trends that are being followed by successful apps.
  • Technologies being used by up-and-coming apps.
  • How was the app able to attract users and consumers?

Also, think out of the box — bring out unique Ideas to Impress your audience, try solving their problems which no app has done till now, to increase the engagement of the user with the application. Experiment with the latest technologies and when you feel you are ready implement them in your project.

Use less dependency

Start writing code with fewer dependencies and understand how the framework works and it will help gain knowledge to work better with dependencies. Also, make sure to read the complete documentation of the dependency to know better about it and use it more efficiently.

“The future of mobile is the future of everything.” — Peter Rojas

Start Reading codes

Always keep learning. Though you have the knowledge of writing code, reading others’ code will improve your thinking abilities and ultimately help you in writing codes with better logic and in a simpler manner to reduce the load on the machine, as well.

Spend time reading blogs written by other developers where they might have come across hurdles and struggles similar to yours and understand how they overcame them.

Learn Design Patterns

Design patterns are a proven solution for specific tasks or problems. If you are stuck in a certain problem, understanding its design patterns can be very helpful. There are a number of design patterns available for you to learn which are very low-effort and can be learned within a week!

Here are some of the useful resources that you can refer to.

Contributing to open source

If you have developed a library, plugin, or a useful piece of code that you are using in your project or application then you should consider open-sourcing it. Maintaining those open-source projects helps you in gathering critical and vital feedback from other developers and provides faster solutions for debugging. Open-sourcing also allows you to explore the knowledge of other developers and adds great value to your overall career as a developer.

Understand your IDE better

Before you jump into your project make sure you are spending an ample amount of time understanding your IDE better. Android studio is a powerful and Intelligent IDE that makes your work smooth. And, there are various features within Android Studio that many of the developers might not even explore because they aren’t aware of them.

There are many useful shortcuts in Android Studio that improve our productivity. Along with that Android Studio also offers custom plugin features where you can create your own plugin that can help in multiple aspects such as generating boilerplate codes and auto-generate codes.

Architect your app

It is a good practice to use architecture to structure your code. Writing the code in a manageable and understandable way helps with better testing and faster debugging, this practice also helps other developers understand our code easily.

Instead of dumping all the code in the Activity or Fragment write the code in different layers with separate controllers, models, and views. Adopt the MVVM or MVP architecture in your project so that the code will be easy to maintain and test.

Learn clean code guidelines

It is necessary to know and understand the standard guidelines while developing an android application. As you know that decimal number takes double the memory of an Integer so you should have the knowledge of efficiently handling the memory that is allocated to the variable or the object that you use in the code. Create functions that can be used at multiple places in the code hence reducing the effort in writing the code again and again and in turn reducing the overall memory consumption. Maintaining a proper folder structure helps in easy navigation throughout the project.

Reactive Programing

To Boost your android programming to the next level I prefer you to learn Reactive Programming — RxJava. This will give you an entirely different way of thinking while building the app. Reactive programming depends on asynchronous programming logic handling the real-time updates.

Focus on security

Nowadays keeping your data secured plays a vital role in Software Engineering. Cybercriminals are focused on stealing data from emerging applications in the market. So implementing high-level security is very important in application development and to help you with that there are a lot of new technologies currently available in the market with advanced features that can be made use of.

Test for perfection

One of the most important things to keep in mind while developing an android application is that the android devices have different resolutions and screen densities hence testing your app to make sure that the display is proper on every device with respect to different screens resolution is extremely important. Testing also helps in building confidence in your code and the overall application. The best way to test the app is to test it according to the use cases. This will give you a chance to control your mistakes easily.

“Mobile is the enabling centerpiece of digital convergence. Mobile is the glue for all other digital industries to use when approaching convergence, but mobile is also the digital gateway for the real world to join in this global metamorphosis of human behavior.” — Daniel Bæk

Now that I have shared some of my favorite tips with you from my own development experience — it’s time to understand them and adopt these tips in your development process.

Hoping these will help you to become a better developer 🙂

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