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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.
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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.
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.
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.
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.
When it comes to communication and obtaining information, these have replaced the desktop which requires the use of CPU and was commonly used before. Well, we have the two of the most popular mobile operating systems, Android and iOS, which are bringing competition to the market and making people go crazy about them with the highest expectations on point.
Android is an operating system based on the Linux kernel and was developed by Google. On the other hand, iOS, previously called iPhone OS, is an operating system developed by Apple Inc. Perhaps a difference that is widely known between these two mobile operating systems has something to do with hardware options. iOS only runs with Apple devices such as the iPhone and iPad. Meanwhile, Android is available in different mobile devices that are manufactured by various companies. Because of this, Android appears to be more accessible than iOS due to the fact that it provides a lot better flexibility. Another difference is that, IOS-manufactured devices are restricted to share photos, and other multimedia files with a fellow iOS device only. Meaning, an Apple device could only use its Bluetooth function with another Apple device. However, you could still use its built-in Bluetooth function to wirelessly connect your iPhone to other compatible devices, such as you computer and laptop. Android does not have such restrictions as iOS has. One thing that iOS is more advantageous of is that it allows its users to upgrade to a newer version. Every time that the operating system has released new versions, users will be notified and are provided with the latest version.
To sum it up, even though the differences are clearly stated, we have to admit that they are still and no doubt, making the market on fire for years now. Every corner of the Earth is crazy over tablets and phones that are dominated by these two operating systems. And every store is flooding with customers who are cunningly wanting gadgets that are updated with these mobile operating systems. Undoubtedly, these two mobile operating systems are both accommodating and user-friendly based on the ramifications of their sales and markets. Truly, they have changed the mechanism of the society, from simple to lavish, plain to vibrant and the like. But the most important thing there is, in every way, people become satisfied and responsible with all of their endeavors with or without up-to-date systems or machines.
Android is another platform that Google has focused upon and their efforts are clearly visible – Android occupies more than 87.9 % market share. With the latest Android P right around the corner, it seems like a good time to take the best of both worlds – Machine Learning and Android and showcase why Android is more than likely to beat its competitors using Google’s mammoth like intelligence prowess and why AI will attract everyday users as well as developers.
Here are a few reasons why.
Google announced its virtual helper back in May of 2016 during its annual conference, Google I/O. Google described it as a “conversational assistant” and hoped that it would provide “an ambient experience that extends across devices”. And the feedback received has been mostly positive.
Of course, Google isn’t alone in making an attempt at lending a software hand to its users. In fact, it isn’t even the first – Apple released a beta version of Siri with its iPhone 4S almost a decade ago, October 2011. To say that software such as Siri has come a long way in these 7 years would be a gross understatement. It seems like every tech giant is releasing their own assistants every other week. While the more prominent ones are Microsoft’s Cortana, Amazon’s Alexa, Samsung’s Bixby, Google’s Assistant, and Apple’s Siri, nearly every review from professional testers reveals the one that manages to swing almost everything they throw at them. And that’s the Google Assistant.
It has proven its mettle countless number of times in tasks ranging from speech recognition and contextual understanding to providing concise yet verbose information to any queries the user may make.
Some would say it’s years ahead of other virtual assistants although and advancements like the Duplex is just confirming this.
AI Powered Apps
Tech giants are recognising the importance of incorporating machine learning into their products and as our systems keep getting more powerful and people generate more data than ever, it’s no wonder why they do so. This is evident from companies adopting and promoting intelligent computations.
Apple has been urging developers to utilize it’s relatively new CoreML framework that can be used to train machine learning models for developing apps for iOS. It’s too early to make a judgement on this step by Apple, but it’s quite safe to say that the red fruit iPhone manufacturer is late to the party.
Google released an open source framework called Tensorflow back in 2015 after it was tested and developed internally for more than 4 years. It has since gained the badge of industry standard and is one of the most active repository on GitHub. It was developed with developers in mind and has multiple ports for different operating systems and supports multiple programming languages as well so a developer feels right at home.
Tensorflow Lite is Google’s aim at having native support for it’s deep learning models in Android phones. Apps such as Gmail are already putting this into use by featuring something called “Smart Replies” that basically just try to understand the situation and context on an email received and will display a few options that might make for a good reply to the mentioned. Another famous app is Photos by Google that uses deep learning, a popular form of machine learning, to recognize people from pictures stored on the smartphone and suggest possible options such as sharing them with the person themselves or create an entirely new album for them.
Long story short, Google has already starting rolling apps like Translate, Assistant, Photos, Gmail, etc and has made the necessary tools for developers to do the same with their own. Which brings us to the next topic –
Extremely Well Developer Support
Google has always been a loved one by developers. Besides offering great opportunities such as GSOC, it has released open source libraries such as scikit-learn and TensorFlow that have been hugely popular and successful within the developer community.
Even Android, being open source, offers a lot of flexibility for developers and so, naturally, developers will be much more focused towards building scalable, optimized apps for this platform.
Google wants more and more people to enter this field of machine and has made efforts to do so. One such instance is it’s Machine Learning Crash Course. It’s a from scratch course aimed at developers with almost no previous experience in the field of AI. It guides the user from basic linear algebra concepts to state of the art convolutional neural networks.
Android developers were given attention with the announcement of Tensorflow Lite that is an ecosystem for the said platform. It works smoothly with the official Android IDE, Android Studio to develop apps with the same level of consistency as before.
Google didn’t fail to make the jaws of visitors and the viewers of its developer conference for 2018 drop to the ground in pure awe. It showcased something the developers at Google had been hard at work at, named Google Duplex.
It’s an extension of the already powerful Google Assistant that helps the user get through his / her day by making appointments or bookings for services such as ordering food from a store that doesn’t have an online presence or fixing a haircut from a salon for the user.
It was presented by Sundar Pichai, leaving the audience clapping their hands away. And why wouldn’t they? They witnessed an age-old test called the Turing Test that was supposed to be almost a decade away from being solved, annihilated albeit in a very specific manner.