My last post (Android Developer Income Report) caused a lot of questions about how to jump into Android apps development. It is very surprising for me as earnings I have presented are not even close to most of iPhone developers income. Anyway the future of Android developers is looking very bright and there is a lot of space for new applications ideas... So if you are still really interested in making Android development a serious source of your monthly income this post may be helpful as a starting point... Here are statements I have read before I started to develop for Android...
You should know Java perfectly ... That is FALSE!
Most of very serious experts would say "You have to know Java language perfectly or you can not even dream about Android development!". That is not so true... In my case I have been coding really well only in PHP. Java was one of languages I have always wanted to learn in my free time... But I almost have no free time so I knew only very basics... I have even bought "Thinking in Java" - unfortunately I have not even finished a third chapter... But I knew the basics of Java. That is all you need!
You should know your IDE (Eclipse or Netbeans) perfectly... That is FALSE!
Another thing that expert would say "You need to know your IDE perfectly or you will be lost in it before learning a new language!". It looks that I am not real expert as I have started learning my IDE (Eclipse) with Java Dalvik (language used for Android apps). So the truth is you just need to start using an IDE to learn it... And books written by experts about IDE are in most cases waste of time and money...
You need to have an Android based phone... That is (again) FALSE!
It is good to have and Android phone... I will say even more... it would be best to have a few phones with different Android versions and different add-ons (Android tablet may be useful too) to test if your app is working with all of them! But it still won't help you to get rid of all problems that an app may cause on another devices. It is helpful to test your app with real touch screen but for most cases an Android phone emulator (that is included in Android SDK) is really enough.
So what do you really need...?
There are a few things you need to start a real Android development. Here are a points that in my honest opinion are really required:
- Basic Java knowledge (or any other object oriented language)
- Free to download Android SDK with included Android phone emulator
- Free IDE like Eclipse
- Free Android documentation
Other things that are not necessary but are very helpful (in my case):
- Android phone (my choice I am absolutely happy with is HTC Desire)
- Good Android book to get to know the basics (I have bought two books that made me really comfortable with all the basics - "Beginning Android 3" and "Hello, Android")
So if you really want to be an Android developer - don't be scared by the "experts" - just try to learn it and you will be surprised how easy it may be!