Top 5 Android Development Tools

Android operating system has been designed primarily for touchscreen mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers.

Developed Initially by Android, Inc., backed financially by Google (later bought by Google in 2005), Android was unveiled in 2007 along with the founding of the Open Handset Alliance ( a consortium of hardware, software, and telecommunication companies devoted to advancing open standards for mobile devices).

Android is the buzz word in technology today with a market share of 42% across various devices worldwide. Android apps are open source unlike their competitors like iOS and Blackberry. The tools needed for their development are free and there is no need for purchase of a special developer phone or register your hardware as a development device.

Here are the Top5 Android Development tools currently trending in the market

  • Android SDK
  • Native Development Kit(NDK)
  • Titanium Mobile SDK
  • Hyper Next Android Creator
  • ADOBE AIR

1. Android SDK:

The Android Software Development Kit (SDK) provides you with the API libraries and developer tools necessary to build, test, and debug apps for Android. It is one of the most popular SDK used for Android.

Aspiring New Android developers can download the ADT Bundle to quickly start developing apps. It includes the essential Android SDK components and a version of the Eclipse IDE with built-in ADT (Android Developer Tools) to streamline your Android app development. These are some of the important components in ADT Bundle

  • Eclipse + ADT plugin
  • Android SDK Tools
  • Android Platform-tools
  • Current Version of the Android platform
  • Current Version of the Android system image for the emulatorMore

2. Native Development Kit(NDK):

The NDK is a toolset that allows android developers to implement parts of their app using native-code languages such as C and C++.NDK can be proved to be a lot of help for the developers as they can reuse existing code libraries written in these languages.

The most important point to be considered here is that NDK will not benefit most apps. Developer needs to balance its gains over draw-backs, as the native code may not always increase the performance, but generally increases the complexity. Prefer NDK only if it is essential to your app, never because you simply prefer to program in C/C++.

3. Titanium Mobile SDK:

The Titanium SDK provides community developers with an unmatched ability to create quality native, mobile web or rich hybrid applications to all platforms from a single code base, using JavaScript. With over 5,000 APIs, Titanium allows you to deliver an immersive user experience at a fraction of the time compared with traditional native platforms.

Although the Titanium suffers with some disadvantages like flexibility limitations, User Experience issues and complexity issues, Titanium still stands in the first place for Android and other cross platform apps development

4. Hyper Next Android Creator:

HyperNext Android Creator (HAC) is an easy to use software creation system that allows almost anyone to quickly start building their own Android apps that work. Apps developed on HAC enjoys good support on a wide range of devices.

HAC operation is based on HyperCard, which treats software as a stack of cards, where only one card is visible at a time and hence is quite well suited for mobile phone applications which allow single window operation.

The programming language used in HAC is “HyperNext” is much more similar to English, making it user friendly to learn and implement.

5. ADOBE AIR:

The Adobe® AIR® runtime enables developers to package the same code into native apps for iPhone, iPad, Kindle Fire, Nook Tablet, and other Android™ devices, reaching the mobile app stores for over 500 million devices.Running on Action Script,HTML,CSS AIR allows users mostly to develop cross platform mobile apps saving the time and minimising the development cost.

Along with these Tools there are some other tools like PhoneGap, BatteryTech SDK that should not be missed out.

Develop The Android Application Through The Company

Generally, there is a lot of difference is there when an Android application is developed by the Android application development company and by the freelancers. The android app development company develops the application according to the client’s requirements. They will have a team of professionals who can develop the Android app with advanced technology. The cost may vary between the Android application development company and the freelancers. However, when you take on the freelancers, they will develop the application single handled. They cannot deliver the project within the specified time line. They will struggle to find a solution if they face a problem between the project development. The freelancers will quote fewer amounts for the project development when compared with the Android apps development company.

There is no need for the users to take any license to use the Android based platform smart phones due to its open-source nature. This gave more freedom to the smart phone companies to release more Android based smart phones. Because of this the Android applications demand started to increase day by day. If you develop the Android app with the assistance of the Android application development company, they will support you in all the circumstances. They will provide the on site support to their clients. If you want to add any extra features to your application after some two or three years later the Android application development company will definitely assist you. You cannot expect these kinds of support from the freelancers. The freelancers will not support you at any point of time after the project completion. They will look for money rather than good relationship with the clients.

The client can meet the Android developers in the company whenever needed if they choose the developers in the Android application development company. The client will not get this kind of freedom if they choose the freelancers. The freelancers don’t upgrade their knowledge according to the latest technology. The Android Software Development Kit supports the developers very well to develop any kind of Android application. The Android Software Development Kit contains libraries, debugger, sample code, tutorials and the hand set emulator. Since the Android contains all these built-in features it gives more flexibility to the developers. There is another reason available behind the success of the Android based smart phones and applications. It is none other than Google. The Google marketed it very well. To develop Android apps it will take only fewer amounts when compared with the other platform based applications.

Your Android Smartphone May Be Leaking Personal Data

Smartphones had changed the way we communicate, get information, and entertain ourselves. With smartphones increasingly becoming low-priced and within the range of the average person, therefore, it is no surprise about the source of their widespread success around the globe is their low- price and computing capabilities. With Apple’s iPhone a bit on the pricey side, Google’s Android based Smart-phones are the choice of smart-phones loving frugal folks. Moreover, with multiple manufacturers of Android based smart-phones such as HTC, Samsung, Sony, Huawei, Motorola and LG, the choices of Android based smart-phones are endless. Consequently, such variety and affordability has propelled Google’s android based operating system as the iPhone’s impossible-to-knock-out adversary. Therefore, it’s a given fact that Android operating systems for smart-phones are the entire buzz these days.

Yet, recently, Android has once again made negative headlines, this time on the subject of personal data. Security researchers at Leibniz University in Hanover, Germany found that some perfectly legitimate android applications available for download on Google ‘Play’ may leak your data to hackers. Even so, the team didn’t come across any reported incidents that reported any hackers have taken advantage of this loop-hole.

To be more specific on how confidential data can be leaked with these applications, researchers have found that almost all android applications used SSL and TLS security protocols to transmit your private data. Shockingly, what the research found was that these security protocols weren’t designed properly in these apps – they were faulty. Therefore, if you have recently downloaded apps from Google Play, chances are your username, passwords, credit card number and addresses could be leaked. To test our data leak vulnerabilities, a tool known as ‘MalloDriod’ was used, which can detect Man-in-the-middle attacks.

What researchers determined was that 8% of the applications were defenseless against MITM attacks. The way it works, is that a third-party – hacker, connects between two devices, seemingly acting as a communication device using advanced hacking application. Researchers determined that any application that sends out a certificate is open to attack. What shocked researchers the most, was that 41 out of 100 applications contained this security loophole.

It’s estimated that anywhere from 40 to 185 million users may have downloaded such apps. Researchers say that better security measures and regulations installed within Android operating system is the key to keeping data safe. The majority of the applications available on the ‘Play’ store are not mandated to have strict security protocols, implementing foolproof security measures in Android compatible applications should be the responsibility of the developer of that specific application. It’s up to Google to enforce compliance to protect its user’s identity.

On a different note, smart phones are not the only culprit that can leak personal data. The widespread use of portable-data-storage-devices such as thumb drives and portable hard-drives can also contribute to data theft. If you end up losing one of these devices, and by mistake you happen to have your intimate data stored on them, such as e-statements, tax return or copies of private identification, then there’s potential for some trouble. Experts recommend that when transporting sensitive data on transportable drives, it’s highly recommended that you secure USB movable drives and hard-drives with portable data security software. Identity theft is hot business for criminals, as it is considered an easy way to steal information without ever getting caught. What’s really worrisome is that, by the time you come to know that your data has been stolen, it may be too late. It’s likely that the criminals may have already charged up your account, and you may only find out about this charge once you receive your credit card bill.