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Three Different Android App Development Approaches

Android App Development Approaches
UPDATE: For more resources about how to develop Android apps, check my “Learning How to Create Android Apps Series“.

As the Android phones getting more and more mobile phones market share, I notice that there is increasing number of people interested in getting into Android app development. Me, included. 🙂

The obvious advantage of developing app for Android is, like other open source platform, it’s free. Although if you want to put your app to Android market will cost you $25 (compared to $99 of Apple’s).

So here are three different Android app development approaches I know. So, it doesn’t mean it’s limited to these three.

1. Android SDK

Language: Java
IDE: Eclipse
Cost: Free

My comment:
The official way of developing application for Android. Getting started is quite easy if you’re familiar with Java. Maybe good to understand the basic concept of Android development, because all other approach abstracted this.

Maybe too slow to develop the UI compared to HTML on PhoneGap, or MXML on Flex Mobile.

Code also not portable to iOS, BlackBerry, or other mobile phone platform.

Official Android developers site

2. Adobe Flex Mobile

Language: ActionScript 3.0, MXML, CSS
IDE: Adobe Flash Builder 4.5 or 4.6
Cost: $699

My comment:
I personally like the ActionScript and the Adobe FlashBuilder because of it’s debugging feature. ActionScript looks a lot like JavaScript (both are ECMA), so if you’re familiar with JavaScript, it won’t take much time to learn ActionScript.

The code is portable to iOS, and BlackBerry PlayBook.

Adobe Flex Developer Center

3. PhoneGap

Language: JavaScript, HTML, CSS
IDE: Eclipse, or anything
Cost: Free

My comment:
Adobe officially bought the company who develop PhoneGap, so expect this framework to be actively developed in the future.

The code is portable to iOS, BlackBerry PlayBook, Windows Mobile, etc.

PhoneGap API
PhoneGap Wiki

I’ve done an app using Adobe Flex Mobile, try some quick demo apps on Android SDK, and just about to explore the PhoneGap. As of now, I still prefer Adobe Flex Mobile, but PhoneGap looks pretty good also.

Wrap Up

The mobile development is very hot topic nowadays, and so expect other different ways to develop apps for Android platform in the future. Depending on our existing knowledge, some approach may be easier to do than the other. I’m still exploring the Android development myself, so expect some more posts in the future about Android. 🙂

2 thoughts on “Three Different Android App Development Approaches”

  1. Srinivasan says:

    Good Posts, Keep it on posting for developing android apps

  2. Srinivasan says:

    This post really helped me to get the knowledge of approaching the methods to develop mobile apps.

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