Developing Android Apps

Approx 10 weeks
Built by

Course Summary

As the first course in the Android Developer Nanodegree, Developing Android Apps is the foundation of our advanced Android curriculum. This course blends theory and practice to help you build great apps the right way. In this course, you'll work with instructors step-by-step to build a cloud-connected Android app, and learn best practices of mobile development, and Android development in particular.

Download Udacity's Android app to keep learning wherever you go!

Why Take This Course?

With over 1 billion Android devices already activated, Android represents an incredible opportunity for developers.

As Android continues to grow beyond smartphones, it will become the brains behind invisible, ubiquitous cloud-connected computing. The skills you learn in this course will help you build awesome apps for smartphones and tablets today, and propel you towards exciting opportunities in Android's future.

By the end of this course, you’ll build a cloud-connected Android app, and understand the tools, principles, and patterns that underlie all Android development. You’ll understand the challenges associated with developing for the mobile environment (and how to overcome them), learn how to build a great user experience for Android devices, and apply this knowledge to your own projects.

Prerequisites and Requirements

This course is intended for students with at least 1 year of programming experience in Java or another object-oriented programming language (for example: C++, Objective C or Python).

If you are new to programming, we recommend taking Android for Beginners, which we created with Google for students just like you!

Also, Udacity's Intro to Java is a helpful background if you're looking to refresh your Java skills.

You will be expected to download Android Studio in order to follow along with the instructors throughout the course. For guidance on the install process, take our How to Install Android Studio mini-course.

In addition, you should be comfortable working with code on GitHub.

Access to an Android device is helpful -- but not required -- to complete the final project.

Projects

In this project, you’ll build an app to allow users to discover the most popular movies playing.

What Will I Learn ?

Lesson 1: Create Project Sunshine with a Simple UI (5-8 hrs)

Starting by installing Android Studio, you’ll create your first project with a simple list-based user interface and built and deploy it to virtual and actual devices. You’ll also discover what makes mobile - and Android in particular - a unique environment for app development.

Android Studio, Gradle, and debugging tools
User Interface and Layout managers
ListViews and Adapters

Lesson 2: Connect Sunshine to the Cloud (8-10 hrs)

Replace the mock data with real weather data by connecting Sunshine up to an Internet back-end courtesy of the Open Weather Map API. You’ll learn how to add permissions to your app, initiate network I/O, and how to move time consuming tasks like network data transfers off the main UI thread.

Threading and ASyncTask
HTTP requests on web APIs
Android Permission System

Lesson 3: Create New Activities and Navigate Apps with Intents (8-10 hrs)

Give your app structure and create more complex Activities. You’ll learn about Android’s Intent framework, and how to use Intents to navigate between Activities, both within your app and as a way to add 3rd party functionality.

App navigation with Explicit Intents
Implicit Intents to incorporate 3rd-party apps
Share Intent and the Android sharing framework
Broadcast Intents and Broadcast Receivers

Optional Project: Spotify Streamer, Stage 1 (5-10 hours)

Build a music streaming application that lets you search for an artist, and play samples of their top tracks.

Lessons 4: Use Content Providers and Loaders to Persist and Recover Data (15-20 hrs)

Learn how the Android framework manages the activity lifecycle, and how it differs from what you might expect, and dive head-first into the world of persistent storage. Learn how to create databases, use Android’s Content Providers to provide an abstraction layer between your data and your UI implementation, and use Loaders to efficiently load stored data.

Activity lifecycle and background activity termination
SQLite databases and JUnit tests
Creating and using a Content Provider as an abstraction layer
Using Loaders to asynchronously load data
Creating Adapters to bind UI components to Content Providers

Lesson 5: Implement Rich and Responsive Layouts (8-10 hrs)

Create rich, responsive user interfaces that work across a variety of different hardware types and screen sizes. You’ll learn more details on using the Android Layout managers, Fragments, UI widgets, and Android design principles to add visual polish to your user interfaces, and how to create your own controls from scratch.

Fundamental Android design principles
Supporting localization and variable screen sizes
Optimizing tablet UIs using Fragments
Accessibility Features
Custom views

Lesson 6: Use Services and Notifications to Run in the Background (5-8 hrs)

Deliver a great user experience, even when your app isn’t visible. Learn how the Android framework manages background apps; and discover how to use Services and Notifications to make your app to be active when it’s not in the foreground. You’ll learn techniques for efficient data transfers using SyncAdapters and Google Cloud Messaging, so your app can stay up-to-date without draining the battery.

Background services and alarms to schedule background tasks
Efficient background data transfers with SyncAdapters
Rich notifications to interact with users

Optional Project: Spotify Streamer, Stage 2 (4-6 hours)

Add to your music streaming app by building a new track player UI, and optimize the end-to-end experience for tablet.

Final Project (10-20 hours)

Build your own Android app incorporating the skills you've learned in this course.