Android, also know as Droid, is an operating system for last generation mobile phones. The OS has been developed by Google and is currently the most spread operating system for smartphones in the world, used by more than 33% of the market. Android also runs on tablets developed by Google Inc. as well.
The purchase of Android by Google happened six years ago, in 2005, and the first time it was distributed was in November 2007. The unveiling was announced with the founding of the Open Handset Alliance, which is a consortium of 80 IT companies working for mobile phones improvements. Most of the code for Android was released by Google under the Apache License, which makes Android licensed as free software.
The OS is based on the Linux kernel and is written with middleware, libraries and APIs in C language, and includes Java-compatible libraries as well. Like the other very popular OS on the market, Apple’s iOS, Android has a large database of third-party applications developed by independent programmers or companies, most of them written in Java. More than 250.000 applications are currently available in the Android Market ran by Google. The applications can also be downloaded from other sites, but it is recommended to use the versions from the official market of the OS.
Android is right now the most popular and best-selling smartphone platform in the world, according to Canalys and comScore. Google’s OS was the best sold in the fourth quarter of 2010.
Since its original release, several updates were made for Android. Each version of Android has a code number and a nickname, and the most recent versions are the following: 2.0 Eclair, 2.1 Eclair, 2.2 Froyo, 2.3 Gingerbread, 3.0 Honeycomb, 3.1 Honeycomb and 3.2 Honeycomb. The 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich version is set to be released in Q4 of 2011, being currently in the development and testing process.
Android is mainly powered up by hardware from the ARM architecture. The Android-x86 project offers support for x86 and Google TV uses a special version of Android, working on x86 as well. The first smartphone to use Android was HTC Dream, released in October 2008. Google collaborated with HTC for its first Android device, Google Nexus One, while the 2010 version was made in collaboration with Samsung: Google Nexus S.
Though it works on the Linux kernel, Android had some security issues over the time. In August 2010, a SMS Trojan infected a large number of devices, while in March 2011 Google found 58 malicious applications in the Android Market, which were downloaded to around 260.000 devices. Most of the applications were hiding Trojans and infected many devices. The latest study made in August 2011 stated that around half a million Android users were infected by malware in the first half of 2011.
Nevertheless, Android still remains one of the most popular operating systems in the world, and the only competitor, Apple’s iOS, is still placed quite at a distance in the ranks.
Source by Thomas T Thompson
Hybrid mobile applications are like any other applications you will see on your mobile. They get easily installed on your mobile device. You can look for these apps in the App stores. By using these apps, you can engage your friends via social media, play games, track your health, take photos and much more.
Hybrid mobile applications are developed using a combination of web technologies like CSS, HTML, and JS as same as websites on the internet. The major difference is that hybrid applications are hosted inside a native app which further uses a mobile platform’s WebView. Here, WebView is a chromeless browser window which is typically configured to run fullscreen.
In fact, hybrid mobile apps enable you to access various device capabilities viz. camera, accelerometer, contacts, and much more. However, inside mobile browsers don’t allow you to access these capabilities from it. Furthermore, hybrid mobile applications include native UI elements in those situations where it is necessarily required, as proved by Basecamp’s approach towards hybrid mobile application development.
It is not easy to answer the question how a mobile app is built. Similarly, hybrid mobile apps are no different. A well-written hybrid application should not behave or look any different than its native equivalent. However, users don’t care about it as they only want an app that works well. It is what actually matters to them. If you are trying to figure out whether a mobile application is hybrid or native, it would be like you are trying to differentiate rare grape varieties of wine.
Unless you are the one who really cares about this, it is not terribly important. What all matters are how your hybrid mobile application development is going to work in the long run as no one will care about how it was built. A hybrid mobile application is said to be good if it performs well for its users.
How are hybrid mobile applications built?
Like other websites are built, hybrid mobile apps follow the same manner. Both are built with a combination of technologies like CSS, HTML, and JS. Generally, a hybrid app targets a Web View which is hosted inside a native container rather than targeting a mobile browser. This allows its users to access various hardware capabilities of the mobile device.
If we talk about Apache Cordova, it was actually started as a project named PhoneGap. But nowadays, PhoneGap is considered as a distribution of Apache Cordova which includes additional tools. To know more about its history, you can check out Cordova, PhoneGap and what’s in a name?
Various application assets like CSS, HTML, JS are packaged via tooling through Apache Cordova for targeting platform SDKs. Once a hybrid app is built, it can be run just like any other app on the mobile device. Apache Cordova provides the tooling that is highly driven by a command line interface. However, mobile app developers can still leverage IDEs such as Visual Studio and effective solutions like the Telerik Platform to further increase productivity.
Since mobile app developers don’t want to be getting locked into proprietary platforms, so hybrid mobile apps give a way to mobile app developers for re-using their existing skills in web development. This mainly includes SDKs provided by platform vendors and the programming languages.
Obviously, it’s true that mobile app developers become able to target multiple platforms with hybrid mobile app development. But when it comes to WebView or web runtime, each platform comes with a set of caveats. This is more true for Android and not consistent between OS versions.
Furthermore, there must be some unique capabilities of platforms to which a mobile app developer may wish to target. In such cases, a combination of platform-specific code and plugins must be utilized which will take advantages of those capabilities. Optionally, mobile app developers can take advantage of 3rd party web runtimes such as Crosswalk which can be further embedded into your hybrid applications.
When should you build a hybrid mobile application?
It is the foremost concern of every mobile app developer who wants to build a hybrid mobile app. The first thing you should do is to check your mobile application’s requirements. Before committing to a platform strategy must evaluate the technical merits as well as non-technical merits of hybrid mobile apps over the web and native mobile apps. You should first consider the following questions before developing a hybrid app:
– What are the technical abilities of your mobile development team?
– Which mobile app platforms do you wish to target?
– Are you looking to use the multiple capabilities of the mobile device?
– Do you want to distribute your apps through the app stores?
– Does the hybrid approach really live up to its promise in the coming years?
The above questions are needed to be answered properly before the development of mobile apps. You may further evaluate more questions in detail.
WHICH MOBILE APP PLATFORMS DO YOU WISH TO TARGET?
You may have a number of choices if you want to target more than one platform. This is because the web offers a highly interactive solution for this purpose. However, the mobile browser is your target. HYbrid apps lend itself to this due to its reliance upon the WebView.
On the other hand, Native apps find a unique space among this. In fact, you are essentially coupled to this platform if you rely upon platform-specific programming languages and vendor SDKs. For this case, Objective-C or Swift is used for iOS, Java is used for Android and C# is used for Windows phone.
DO YOU WANT TO DISTRIBUTE YOUR MOBILE APP VIA APP STORES?
If you want to distribute your app via an app store, you must build a native or hybrid app. You can not distribute sites through app stores. Hence, browser’s address bar is provided for this. Despite this limitation, whether you build a hybrid or native app, it is strongly recommended that you must have a website available for your mobile app. You need to create this because this will be the first place your app users might expect to go in case if they stuck with any problem.
ARE YOU LOOKING TO USE THE CAPABILITIES OF THE MOBILE DEVICE?
As compared to native and hybrid apps, websites have a limited set of abilities. These limitations are put up by a browser that effectively sandboxing it from mobile OS. A lot more device capabilities are exposed through HTML5 with the help recent developments with mobile browsers which include geolocation, camera, and others.
In spite of these advancements, support for advanced functionality is still limited. For an instance, streaming and media capture are still unsupported in various mobile browsers. Due to these limitations with mobile browsers, there are many mobile app developers who are compelled to evaluate native and hybrid apps as alternatives. These platforms enable mobile app developers to access device APIs. While in case of hybrid apps, plugins support this capability.
It is often said that native app development is best suited for apps where graphics performance is paramount. The best example is the mobile games which completely rely on complex visual interactions on the screen. No matter, how wonderful game app you have developed for your users and how flawlessly it operates from a functional perspective, you can expect this game app to have a very low app store rating if it is lacking energy. Due to these reasons, mobile app developers have long argued for using a hybrid approach to build their game applications.
However, there exist a number of solutions for hybrid mobile apps. This includes WebGL and HTML5 Canvas that are well-suited to build game applications. In fact, these technologies are most preferred and approachable for mobile app developers due to the presence of libraries like EaselJS, Paper.js, and others. This is not limited to game development only. Developers build more traditional, line-of-business apps by using frameworks like Kendo UI and Famo.us.
WHAT ARE THE TECHNICAL ABILITIES OF YOUR APP DEVELOPMENT TEAM?
The team’s technical abilities is another major factor when it is about to evaluate development options for mobile. To build native applications, you need to hire developers who are proficient and experienced with the programming languages of every platform that you wish to target and platform SDKs. But for building web and hybrid apps, you need to hire developers who use web technologies like CSS, HTML, and JS. You may also have a team that can target more than one platform with a single set of technologies. So, this is a worth considering when you have to evaluate your opinions.
DOES THE HYBRID APPROACH REALLY LIVE UP TO ITS PROMISE?
Lastly, it is important to know that hybrid is not the be-all and end-all approach for mobile app development. At the initiation of this article, I have thrown light upon the challenges of overcoming the inconsistencies between WebViews. While other challenges still remain. With hybrid app development, you can target the various features of a mobile platform in order to discover if they are inaccessible. This is because plugins used for them can be unreliable, out-dated or missing altogether. This takes you to the dilemma whether to remove an application feature or to write the plug-in by yourself.
You may find hybrid app development model restricted when you have to develop an app that requires numerous native features or an app where performance is critically required for the success of the app. With this situation, you may found yourself to forcefully choose native development technologies. However, these are considered as alternative approaches which let you build performant native apps without having core knowledge of tools like Android Studio and Xcode.
Source by Ilieana Williams
Android Lollipop problems with their solutions
Although Android Marshmallow is out for some devices, many of the devices are still using Lollipop and are still receiving updates to the OS. Lollipop has been a spectacular operating system for Android with such amazing features, but there is no such thing as perfect, and Lollipop is no exception. There are many Android Lollipop issues and we’re going to list here some common Android Lollipop issues and their possible fix.
The Lollipop update somehow introduced memory leaks that caused way too many problems all over. This Android Lollipop issue caused the apps to crash and have lag in the UI and even caused the UI to force stop without any kind of warning.
On high-end devices, this leak isn’t much noticeable, but for the older devices, this can cause a lot of problems.
Rebooting the device will only fix this temporarily and after a few days, the lag will return.
Clearing the Google play’s data will somehow solve the issue, but to permanently solve the issue you’ll have to wait for Google to release an official update.
If your device happens to charge a little slower than before, then you’re not actually alone in this matter. A lot of users are having this Android Lollipop issue and do note that charging from a PC will always be slow. Some potential solutions to this are.
• If you’re using a third-party charger, then that might be the reason of slow charging.
• The cable might be causing a problem, try charging it with another trusted cable.
• Clear your device’s cache partition.
Rapid battery drain:
A lot of users are complaining about this Android Lollipop issue that their mobile’s battery drains a lot faster than it used to or decreases really fast. This was a major issue in the first Lollipop update was later fixed with an update and should probably have a much better battery life than before. If you’re still facing the problem, try these.
• Update all your apps so they are compatible with the new OS and also clear their cache.
• Factory reset your device.
No audio on call:
Quite a few people have actually faced this Android Lollipop issue where they can’t seem to hear the caller and vice versa. This makes the user impossible to receive calls. The potential solutions to this are.
• Restarting your phone seems to solve the problem.
• Try using your headsets or a Bluetooth headset and then switch back to the audio of your device.
Camera is not working:
Not a lot of people have been facing this Android Lollipop issue but for those who have, this issue has frustrated them a lot. Some people have also been complaining about the camera buttons disappearing so even you cannot switch to the front camera. Some solutions to fix this issue are.
• Restart your mobile and then open the app.
• Force stop the camera app from settings and clear its cache and data and then restart your device
• Wipe the Cache of your device.
• Factory reset your device.
Source by Umair Hanif
Google Play is not the one and only market for Android applications. Many people are incentivized to look for apps outside Google Play for a number of reasons. The main Android market is huge and popular, but on the other hand this makes new apps harder to discover. Alternative markets may include apps that were filtered out from Google Play, country-special apps, or simply be designed for special devices (such as Amazon Appstore).
Alternative application stores has concerns faced by both users and software owners. For users there is an increased risk of getting malware or apps with poor UX. For developers and software owners the problems may hide in terms and conditions of app deployment, as well as piracy issues. Not all alternatives to Google Play are equally useful, but some might be interesting for expanding the area of app distribution.
Google Play Store
We all know the giant Google Play, the primary target of developers’ efforts. Thus it’s not quite necessary to write much about it. Whatever stores you choose for your app, they are most likely to be complementary to this one, which holds more than million apps in its vaults.
If we speak about the most popular alternative to Google Play, we speak about Amazon Appstore. This is the default store for Kindle Fire tablets, which run a forked version of Android and often top the lists of the most popular Android tablets. Therefore it may be useful for owners of tablet-optimized apps. For mobile users, there’s an interesting feature called ‘Test Drive’ that allows trying out an app by launching a virtual copy in the browser, and a popular free-app-of-the-day feature. For developers, there is a stricter quality control than on Google Play Store. Currently there are about 128,000 apps in Amazon Appstore, and it’s available in more than 200 countries worldwide.
Samsung is the biggest hardware manufacturer for Android, and it has its own application store, which can be accessed by an app called S Suggest, which is as well a trademark of Samsung. Apps must be submitted and must undergo the process of quality control and check of device compatibility, so here the risk of catching malware is minimal. The store has about 30,000 apps and works across 125 countries.
Another alternative application store with over 21,000 Android apps, which has a relatively large community and a process of quality check. It’s globally available and supporting a number of payment options, the most popular being probably PayPal. It would be rather easy for your app to get noticed in this store. Other noteworthy peculiarities are SlideMe ad network and an opportunity to get more revenues than from the standard model, which works in three aforementioned stores (70% of revenues go to the software owner, 30% go to the store).
GetJar dubs itself the world’s biggest open application store, and it’s not solely focused on Android. This independent vault contains 350,000 mobile applications for Android, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, and minor platforms. Like in other stores, it’s easy for a user to discover and find apps through categories and subcategories. This is an immensely popular free app repository which is quite capable of bringing additional users for your software product.
You may always browse for detailed information about these and other stores (such as Opera Mobile Store or LG Smart World), and you may consult with your developer before planning the distribution of your Android software. The openness and flexibility of the platform has ensured its worldwide popularity, and niche apps can be placed and discovered by numerous users in niche application stores. Although smaller application stores have fewer visitors than Google Play, there’s quite a bigger chance for your app to become featured.
Source by Oleg Lola
Android is a very versatile, customizable and open operating system. You may think that rooting is not for you, but it can actually help you to a very great extent. With so little work, so much can be achieved. You may have heard bad things about rooting but in some cases, you may consider using it, especially if it is done by people who are aware of what needs to be done. Some of the reasons include:
1. Features and apps
Rooting helps you to get the features that you really want. There are times when an app may be blocked by different carriers or may hack into the system files or may be unavailable. Rooting assists with this making the apps that had been incompatible previously to be compatible. Rooting gives you the chance to do so much more with your gadget.
There are apps that one can use so as to automate everything on the phone. If you root, then there is so much more that you will discover. Some tasks like turning on the screen, changing speed of the CPU, toggling GPS and 3G all require rooting. When you want to reap the full benefits of some apps, then it is totally necessary to root.
3. Boosting the speed and battery life
There is so much more that can be done if at all you need to boost battery life and also speed up the phone even if you do not root. However, if you do root, you get so much more power. There are apps that you can use to overclock or under clock the phone so as to have greater performance. You can use yet others apps, so as to hibernate some of the apps that aren't in use.
4. Blocking ads in apps
Ads can be very irritating and they actually use up your data. If you want the ads blocked in devices and apps, then rooting can actually help to a great extent. There are various options that you can pursue if your phone is rooted.
5. Backing up the transitions
When you change devices or when the device is restored, you can back up the apps and the settings. In this way, it becomes easier to get the setups. There are things that can be backed up without rooting.
6. Removing any preinstalled crap ware
Backup is great and it can uninstall the battery draining and space wasting ware that is usually preinstalled on some phones today. The feature is root only. If you have your phone rooted, then all you have to do is to freeze them so as to allow the phone to work as it should and then delete them so as to free the space.
7. Tweaking the dark corners
Rooting is a great idea if you really like fiddling with the features. You can customize almost everything, including the layout of the keyboard or even increasing the scrolling speed. You will be able to multitask better.
Source by Shalini Madhav
Why Android development?
Android is a very powerful mobile operating technique, created by Google and carters especially to smartphone mobile handsets. It is a great OS for all developers as it makes the work simple, easy and uncomplicated. Therefore, android apps developers gets to design and manufacture mobile applications at cheap prices. You will also find an Android Software Development Kit (SDK), which is the basic kit to help every Android app developer get started.
What are the services offered in Android development?
There are many companies online that offer you a plethora of Android development services. All you need to do is search for them on the web to see what their rates are and what their services are. Some of them are given below –
1. Android Application Development
2. Android Game Development
3. Android Software Development
4. Android Website Development
5. Android Tablet Application Development and many more
There are several advantages of using Google android applications such as it offers a wide selection for sound, video, documents, photos, GPS navigation, video camera, touch screen, high clarity display screen and many more.
Android offers you simple methods for designing, production, testing, format changing, and coding, all this makes it easy for an Android developer to attain new heights in the field of Android Development. Making efficiency and quality their key goals.
There are a plethora of options in the Android field. If you want to be an android application developer, there are plenty of options for you. There are already many android applications in the market, and the field is on the rise. If you want a career in Android Application Development or Android Eclipse Development, you can easily get it. Android apps development is a set of core applications, and all these applications are written with Java. In a nutshell Android can be explained as follows – A free, open source mobile platform, which is not just limited to phones. It can be used in a DVR, or even in an mp3 player.
Some of the features of Android Application development include:
1. Application framework
2. GSM Telephony
c) Rich development environment
d) Optimized graphics
h) Integrated browser
The use of Smartphone on android applications has increase greatly over the years. Mobile companies such as HTC, Samsung, LG, Motorola, and other handsets make full use of Android. These mobile companies are developing new applications using Droid Eclipse Development which are most suitable to its users. There are several companies that will help you develop your android application. They will give you customized solutions that will provide you with the best applications. All you need to do is contact them and tell them your idea behind the mobile application. Android games are also extremely popular, everyone with an android phone will know exactly how interesting and addictive android phones are, especially the games.
This is a big reason why Android Game Developers are also very much in demand in the Android application development field. There are openings in all segments designing, testing, debugging, developing tools for the applications, publishing and distribution. All these are segments of the android development platform where it is easy to get placements.
The reason for the increase in android phones and development phase is because it has all features that a Smartphone needs. Be it a student, businessman or a housewife, there is something to keep everyone entertained.
Source by Dorothy Borak