With how popular Android smartphones and tablets are becoming now is a great time to get into Android app development, but it can be quite confusing figuring out where and how to start.
In this guide I’ll show you everything you need to know and where to get started with making Android apps.
Learn the Language
The language that all Android apps are programmed in is called ‘Java’. Java is a complex programming language that has widespread use across many different platforms.
If you want to make Android apps then you’ll need to learn Java. You have a few choices when it comes to learning Java, you can either pick up some books and try to learn it on your own, you can take some college classes for it, or if you know someone that is fluent in Java, you can have them teach it to you.
It will take a while to learn it, but if you really want to make Android apps then it will be worth it in the long run.
Get an IDE
Once you’ve started to get a grasp on Java, you’ll need an IDE (Integrated Development Environment) to begin writing your code in.
There are many free IDEs available to you. A few I personally recommend are Eclipse, NetBeans, or Geany.
Once you’ve chosen your IDE you’ll want to learn the ins-and-outs of it, and look up a few tips about using it. You’d be surprised how much knowing a few keyboard commands can come in handy.
Download the Java JDK and Android SDK
In order to start coding in Java, you’ll need to download the Java JDK from Oracle’s website . This is a requirement for programming anything with Java.
Likewise, you’ll also need the Android SDK before you can start making Android apps. The Android SDK can be downloaded from the Android Developer website.
Depending on the IDE you’ve chosen you may need to configure it to work properly with the Java JDK and the Android SDK. This is an easy process and you’ll typically be able to find the instructions to do it off the website for the IDE.
Make Simple Apps
Once you feel you’re ready to start making apps you’ll need to start off slow. You wont be able to make your dream app just yet.
Start off by making really simple apps, such as an app that displays some text on the screen, then move on to more complex apps like an RSS reader.
Eventually, after you’ve gotten plenty of experience, you’ll be able to make bigger and more complex apps, and possibly even the app you’ve always wanted to make.
Submitting to the App Market
Once you’ve made an app you’re proud of and want to share with the world you’ll want to begin by submitting it to the Android App Market.
Submitting an app to the Android App Market is a pretty simple process, all you have to do is create a developer profile on their website, pay the $25 registration fee and then you’re free to submit and publish your apps.