To date, Android remains a world’s leader by the number of users with a wide margin from other market players. So, the demand for applications and experienced Android developers will only grow in the future.
Android offers app developers a lot of features: it is a universal, open platform used by millions of users around the world, with an easy apps distribution. Besides, you can use different tools to make the work more pleasant, better, and faster. Let’s have a look at the tools that are definitely helpful for Android programmers in their daily work.
None of the Top Tools for Developing Applications for Android is complete without Android Studio. This is the official IDE (integrated development environment) for Android, created by Google. Android Studio acts as an editor for your chosen programming language (it supports Java, C ++, as well as Kotlin, a compiler that can create APK files and a file system for organizing your project. In addition, it includes an XML editor and an advanced layout editor. Here you will find the guide for beginners on using Android Studio.
2. Android Debug Bridge (ADB)
ADB is a command-line tool with which you can copy files to and from the device, install and uninstall applications, enable backup and recovery on all Android devices, including the virtual ones. It comes bundled with Android Studio and, to use it, go to the folder where the adb.exe file is located and open a command prompt (Shift + RMB> Open Command Window).
3. AVD Manager
The AVD Manager tool is also bundled with Android Studio. The abbreviation AVD stands for Android Virtual Device; therefore, in essence, it is an emulator for launching Android applications on your computer. This is a very useful tool that allows you to test your applications without having to install them on physical devices. More importantly, the AVD Manager allows you to create many emulators with different screen sizes, specifications, and versions of Android. You can see how your creation will look on any device, and thereby provide support among the most popular gadgets.
Before Android Studio, developers used Eclipse as the main tool for developing Android applications. This IDE supports several different programming languages, including Java. Unlike Android Studio, Eclipse does not offer built-in support and requires a more careful configuration. This resource can be useful for those who are interested in the history of the IDE and are learning to create applications for Android, so to say, in order to broaden one’s horizons.
Fabric was a modular, cross-platform mobile development suite. The basis of Fabric was the Crashlytics service, which collected information about the operation of applications.
Now Fabric is available only until May 4, 2020. The best of Fabric is integrated into Firebase to bring one powerful app development platform to you.
An Android tool that can help you track the overall performance of your application and get detailed information about various key performance indicators, such as FPS, memory usage, CPU usage, disk usage, and more.
GameMaker: Studio is a game development tool for 2D games. It is much easier to use than Unity or Unreal, and allows you to create games with little to no code. However, if you want to add a little more settings to your game, you can use the built-in programming language for beginners – GML or “GameMaker Language.” GameMaker: Studio is not free software, but there is a free trial version.
Back in the days when the Android emulator was slower than a snail, GenyMotion was the best emulator for all Android developers. But over time, GenyMotion has expanded significantly from being just an emulator to a complete platform for advanced application development, testing, and deployment.
Based on Apache Maven and Apache Ant, Gradle is one of the most popular development tools for creating large-scale applications involving Java. If you use Gradle as your build system in Android Studio, then you can add any external library to your project with just one line of code.
10. IntelliJ IDEA
IntelliJ IDEA is a capable and ergonomic IDE designed for maximum programmer productivity. It is very fast and has a complete set of development tools right out of the box.
It costs $149 per year for individual use, but there are many special offers, for example, for students.
This tool has significantly changed the way we provide user feedback on the application. Now users can share screenshots, videos and audio recordings, detailed error reports, etc., to help each other easily identify and correct errors.
LeakCanary is a powerful memory leak detection tool developed by Square, which makes the complex and time-consuming work of detecting memory leaks much easier. Once configured, it will automatically start sending you notifications when a memory leak occurs in your application with a full stack trace to help you fix it.
This is another awesome tool to test your application for memory leaks and to look for critical issues before publishing on Google Play. It works quite well and automatically checks the various user threads of your application and detects potential crashes and critical issues requiring immediate attention.
14. RAD Studio
RAD Studio is an IDE for cross-platform apps development. It supports the full development life cycle. It is very convenient that a single source code base is created, which can be recompiled and redeployed.
It is a powerful open-source debugging platform for Android developed by Facebook. This tool makes debugging native applications for Android as easy as debugging web pages using the Chrome developer tools and helps you perform various actions, such as checking the full hierarchy of activities, checking the SQLite database, monitoring network operations, etc.
16. Source Tree
This free, simple, and beautiful tool will make Git great again. You can visualize all your changes, commits, branches in a beautiful way and never again write one command on the command line. It can also be very useful for all newbies who tend to get confused.
17. Unity 3D
Unity 3D is a game engine and IDE for cross-platform game development. It is very easy to learn and has a large set of functions for developing games. With Android Studio, you can create a game, but in Unity, the same thing can be done much easier without a lot of wasted time and headache. By the way, Unity has the ability to create augmented reality apps for Daydream, Cardboard, or Gear VR!
18. Unreal Engine
Unreal Engine is a game engine and an alternative for those interested in cross-platform and full-featured game development. Unreal, like Unity, supports Android development, but, in terms of graphics, games on Unreal are far superior to games on Unity. However, Unity has the best built-in support for mobile and 2D creations, so it is the preferred option for most mobile game developers. It doesn’t matter which engine you choose, as there are no reasons why you cannot give them both a chance.
19. Visual Studio with Xamarin
If you are the one who does not like to develop applications on the emulator, you should check Vysor, which allows you to reflect your real device on your computer. In addition, you can also screencast in real time on large TVs and projectors with this tool.
That’s it for now. Stay tuned for more posts!