Microsoft surprised Android developers last year with the launch of a brand new emulator designed for performance and features that aren't available anywhere else. While the initial Preview release only included an image for KitKat, subsequent updates introduced an expanded set of emulator images and some valuable new features. While a high-speed emulator is certainly compelling, many developers still didn't adopt it because it had to be downloaded and installed alongside a very large Visual Studio package, not to mention it was also frustrating to set up for use with other IDEs. Last week, Microsoft unburdened the emulator and released it as a standalone download along with step-by-step instructions to set it up to easily run with Android Studio and Eclipse with ADT. Read More
It's been a long and winding road, but the days of Eclipse with ADT are over. In a post on the Android development blog, Google has announced that development and official support for the Android Development Tools plugin for Eclipse will be shut down at the end of this year. Google intends to focus all of its effort on improving Android Studio and advises developers move their active projects to Android Studio using the included migration tool.
This news comes about six months after Google declared the ADT plugin was no longer in active development. The change in status meant the tools would only receive bug fixes and updates necessary to remain functional, but there would be no more improvements or new features. Read More
As much as we all love to live in a digital world, there's just no replacing books. Sure, ebooks are good - but there's something awesome about having a physical copy and flipping through the pages. That's especially true if you're already using your computer for something else - you know, like work. Let me give an example.
Let's say you're a developer, and you're working on...something. You're having issues squashing a bug or getting a specific feature to work the way you want. Then you remember that you have this killer book from Packt Publishing on the shelf behind you that covers the very thing you're having an issue with you. Read More
Most of the standard (non-game) Android apps we use today are created with Java. Alternatives are available, like Apache Cordova and Mono for Android, but there's no doubt that Java is the only true first-class citizen. However, a team at Google is now working on a new cross-platform alternative called Sky, and it's able to deliver 120 FPS out of the box.
Microsoft is in the midst of its annual Build conference. This is sort of like Google I/O or WWDC, but with fewer online viewers. Wednesday's keynote presentation was filled with announcements about Windows 10, the Microsoft Edge browser, an augmented reality headset, and quite a bit more. One product failed to earn stage time: the Visual Studio Emulator for Android, but developers may find renewed interest since the latest version is showing maturity as it expands through the addition of Device Profiles and a number of other recent enhancements.
We originally covered Microsoft's emulator for Android after a mid-November release during the Connect() conference. Read More
Android developers gain a lot of advantages from working on a platform with a wide variety of libraries, open source projects, and other resources to help get their work to the finish line. Unfortunately, if a problem can’t be solved by checking out the SDK samples or reading a few dozen StackOverflow questions, it can be pretty hard to find good alternatives when they are most needed. Before giving up on the tricky problems, or possibly before attempting them, check out Android-Libs.com – a registry of open source code, libraries, handy websites, utilities, and other tools that may be useful to Android developers of all types. Read More
I'm no Android developer, but I figure if I wanted to get started, I'd check out some videos and pick up a couple of books. That leads to the obvious question: where are these things? Packt, a publisher of both eBooks and good old-fashioned print ones, is currently offering its full catalog of development-oriented works for $5 each (in digital format only). It's also offering a few videos at the same price. Read More
When it comes to software development, there are two very distinct camps on the subject of tools: those who prefer to keep it simple with just a text editor and a compiler, and then those who go straight for a fully-featured IDE with all the bells and whistles. For more than a decade, the undisputed champion of IDEs is Microsoft with its assorted versions of Visual Studio. Having come from years of work on Visual Studio, nothing pained me more than the first (several) times I started up Eclipse. While Android Studio goes a long way towards a streamlined development experience, it still lacks much of the fit and finish of Visual Studio. Read More
In addition to the exhilaratingly named "Android Application Development for the Intel Platform" book that we pointed our eyes toward yesterday, the equally catchy "GUI Design for Android Apps" is also available on Amazon right this moment for the low, low price of free. The book generally goes for $29.99, but now it's being offered for less than a cent to anyone who's willing to consume it on some sort of device. The paperback version is still going for $26.99.
"GUI Design for Android Apps" comes to us from authors Ryan Cohen and Tao Wang. The book is aimed at mobile app developers and designers and contains tutorials, code samples, and other useful goodies that assist with the whole learning process. Read More
Free stuff is good, and if you're an Android developer looking to get into the Intel dev scene, then there's a free book on Amazon that should be just what you need. It's called "Android Application Development for the Intel Platform" (man I really love catchy book titles), and it's normally $40. The paperback version is still going for $35, but if you can handle reading on your device, the Kindle Edition costs approximately zero monies right now.
What you’ll learn
- Comprehensive introduction to the Intel ® Embedded and mobile hardware platform
- Android app GUI design principles and guidelines
- Covers the latest Intel Android development tools, including Intel Beacon Mountain version 0.6 and the Intel Compiler
- NDK and C/C++ optimization
- Designing and optimizing for low-power consumption
Who this book is for
The book is primarily for app developers, software engineers and open-source programming enthusiasts, but can also be used by for training programs and Codeacademy-style programs.