Many reports have highlighted how Android has superseded iOS, and emerged as the most popular mobile operating systems. The rapidly growing popularity of the mobile operating system launched by Google also encourages many enterprises to invest in Android development. But the frequent changes in user choices and technologies have made Android app development both complex and time-consuming. So most companies, nowadays, deploy a team of programmers to build robust applications within a short span of time. But the experience, skills and expertise of individual programmers vary. So the members of each Android development team must understand and implement a certain tricks and best practices.
4 Best Practices for Android Development
1. Follow Certain Conventions: The design of an Android app keeps changing during the development process. So the project manager must follow a set of conventions before starting the development project. It will be easier for the team to share resources when the data are stored using an online shared drive like the Google Drive or Dropbox. It is also important to decide a file naming convention before beginning the project. The developers must be asked not to change of the graphic at the time of replacing it. The conventions may seem simple, but these will help an enterprise is standardizing the entire development process.
2. Organize Strings in Multiple XML files: It is a common practice among developers to store strings in strings.xml file. But they can always consider a number of options to organize the strings in a concise and easy-to-access manner. It is important to store the stings in a variety of XML files according to their type and usage. For instance, the application strings can be stored in strings.xml, the messages shown in dialogs can be stored in message.xml, and other strings can be stored in placeholder.xml. Also, the strings can be stored in by creating additional xml files according to their usage. However, it is also important to remove the unnecessary strings from each xml file once the development process is over.
3. Improve UI Responsiveness: Many reports have highlighted how a slow user interface can have a negative impact on the popularity of the Android app. So the team of developers must build an interface that allows users to get information in a quick, convenient and flexible way. The performance and responsiveness of the UI can be optimized by keeping layout complex. Each developer can open the hierarchy viewer up to check the complexity level of a layout. If the layout is more than 5 levels deep, it must be simplified to boost UI responsiveness. At the same time, the developers also need to identify the large view hierarchies that consume more memory. They must manage the VM garbage collection perfectly to prevent the UI responsiveness from being impacted by the frequently blocked main (UI) thread.
4. Make the Application Stable and Bug-Free: When the Android application development is done by a team of programmers, it must be tested during each phase of the development cycle. Along with the modules developed by independent programmers, the app also need to be tested after being integrated. There are several tools that make it easier for an enterprise to identify and fix stability issues like application crashes. The developer can further use the error reporting features provided by Android to know about the application crashed simply by reading reports. At the same time, the team also needs to use feature request tracker and external bug tracker to understand the bugs and features that affect user experience negatively.
Google also regularly recommends additional best practices to make it easier for programmers to build robust mobile apps at a rapid pace. Each Android developer must keep track of new best practices to build an app that will go viral within a few days by providing the best user experience.