Android Mobile App – A Published RSS Reader App
I will take you from beginner to COMPLETELY published on the Google Play Store. NO OTHER COURSE takes you all the way through the process and in so much detail !!
———–Review of this course————–
Really engaging, like the way you explain all the little things, good for us beginners!
———–You will be published————–
By the time you’re done with this course you will have an app on the Play Store. One that earns passive income from advertising!
That’s money STRAIGHT into your pocket!
Please stop buying ‘How to code 10 Android apps in 10 days‘ courses…
There is so much more to Android app development than just plain coding tutorials!
That’s why I created this Android development course! No other Android development course takes you from beginner (with no experience) to published. They only show you ‘How to make an Android app’, wth no reference to all the other parts such as:
- Signing your Android app
- Becoming a Google Android developer
- Creating signing keystrokes for Android
- Submitting an Android app to the Play Store
- Marketing through your Android app listing
This course is for you if you want to:
- Learn the Android development process – from complete beginner to Play Store publishing (no-one else does this, they only show ‘how to code’ app tutorials)
- Get paid $100 – $150 per hour to make apps for paying clients
- Create your own wildly popular apps
- See the whole development process as it really is.
- Have a real app you can publish under your own account
This course is not for you if:
- You are an expert or intermediate programmer
What software do you need?
- Android studio (free) which needs to be run on a Pc or Mac or Linux
Do you need experience?
- No. I assume you are a complete beginner to Android development
What makes this course different?
It reveals the true nature of app development – an involved process with many design and usability iterations. Top clients (those with money) will expect a certain level of professionalism and do not mind large bills to match if you bring them value.
My last invoice amounted to £18,000 for a simple, unpublished version 1 app. It was paid off immediately with the project manager commenting ‘great value and cheaper than large studios’. He loved it because we had gone through several design stages beforehand, allowing him to get exactly what he envisioned.
If I had simply presented my ‘app coding abilities’ I would have only been able to charge one third of that amount.
The reality is that making beautiful apps allows you to charge far more and produce fantastic looking work.
That work becomes your calling card, with clients seeking you out instead of the other way around.
The extras you get when taking this course:
- I break down some app industry guidelines you should follow when creating an Android app (hint: we borrow from other creative industries).
- You learn to think outside the box, giving you an advantage over all your competitors
- A good basic grounding in Android Studio app development (and the Java language)
- An app you can actually publish yourself!
Introduction and setup
I walk you through just what you're going to learn on this course. I also explain why we need more beautiful apps on Android and just how we're going to achieve that on this course.
Android Studio is available on Windows, Mac and Linux. The interface is the same on all 3 operating systems so you can take this course on any operating system of your choice.
We walk through what the various tabs and buttons do in Android studio. Learn how to access things quickly in Android Studio.
Beautiful Android Apps
Beautiful apps are downloaded up to 10x more than plain looking apps. I give you an example of beautiful apps vs ugly apps on the Play store.
We steal a few ideas for making a beautiful app from other areas of creative endeavours. Apps following this philosophy will be subtly good looking, without overdoing it. Most importantly they will stick to Google design guidelines. These guidelines are a must for developers looking to support a wide range of devices and form factors out there.
Did you know that Apple have a document called the human interface guidelines? It's an excellent document that can teach us a lot about how users interact with a touch screen. It is applicable to all apps, not just on iOS! We also sneak a peek at Androids own Material Design guidelines.
Designing our user experience
A user experience (UX) design should be as simple as possible. It must cover the basic functions such as navigating between scenes. It should also consider the emotions initiated in your user when they view a particularly good transition take place, such emotions connect your user to your app, making it less likely they will uninstall it.
Designing our User Interface in Android Studio
We run through installation of the Android simulator and how to open up our app within it. Ensure that HAXM from Intel is installed in the options I show - this improves emulator run speed by a large amount. Alternatively you can run the app on a USB connected Android device
We choose a color theme for our app and I show you some of my favourite tools for doing this.
We design the add feed screen using Android layouts. It is a very simple screen with a box (named EditText in the Android world) and one button. Despite being simple we will apply the principles we've learnt to make it look good.
We go through the layout creation of a list of scrolling items (Android ListView).
Often a confusing subject, I walk you through the basic Android manifest and styles.xml documents. These allow you to set the theme over the entire app in a consistent manner.
Creating and navigating between new activities within Android apps
We look at how to add new activities and how to start them up. As a bonus we learn the Android navigational pattern introduced in Lollipop and backward compatible to Android 4.
Databases on Android (SQLite)
In all of your apps you will need to store data. SQLite databases are the most common and fundamental way to do that. I also explain exactly what a database is.
We construct the core Java code used to access our SQLite database. We will be able to add, find and delete feeds using this code.
We learn how to take data input on an Android screen and store it within an SQLite database for later use.
List Views and adapters on Android
We take a deep dive into the world of list views (known as ListView on Android), a concept you will use over and over again in your coding career. I explain them very clearly using Lego illustrations.
Discover how to remove rows from a List View and delete that row from the underlying SQLite database at the same time.
App permissions on Android via manifest.xml
Every Android app needs to ask permission for certain activities. We look at how to edit the manifest.xml document to request these.
How to use libraries in Android projects
Before we install our RSS library we first create the feed item class to hold our feed items. Classes and objects are fundamental to Java, see my other course on Object Orientation if you'd like to understand them fully.
We install the Simple RSS 2 library available on GitHub. This allows our Java code to seamlessly request RSS items from an external feed.
Fetching our feed items and fixing bugs in Android apps
We use an asynchronous call to fetch our feeds - and we encounter our first bug! We learn what happens when an Android app crashes (clue: it's not good for user experience!)
We learn about error handling and try catch statements. We look at when to them in Java.
Finishing our list of RSS items - putting data into a ListView on Android
We create a list view adapter to place the feed items into. This serves as a source for both data and cells on Android.
Using a little trick I've learned over the years we beautify our list and cut down on memory usage at the same time.
Creating a web view on Android for our RSS item
We learn how to embed a web view inside a new Android activity. The web view will load the URL of our feed item.
How to make money with an Android app (optional)
We talk about the major monetisation strategies used by app developers and when to use them. These apply to most mobile devices, not just Android.
We setup Google Admob ads on our RSS item viewing page. This makes the ads quite unobtrusive, a good thing. You also get paid every time someone views or clicks an ad!
Testing and Debugging Android apps
Testing and debugging are the two most important activities you will undertake when developing Android apps. The more time you spend testing the more people will continue using your creations.
Preparing an Android app for release
Singe handedly the most important part of any app is the Android app icon. It's the first thing users see before downloading your app. It should scream exactly what your app is about.
Android app signing is a very confusing subject that I make simple by using Lego illustrations! We look at why you should always keep your signing key and Android keystore safe.
How to create a Google Developer account and prepare a Google Play listing
Where to go and what to pay for a Google developer account.
We tun through content ratings, listing descriptions and basic icons necessary for the Play Store listing.
We take a look at what feature graphics we should upload to the Play store and, importantly, where they are shown. Feature graphics are essential to getting a user to download your app
Once an app user clicks your Google Play Store listing they want to see screenshots of what the app does. Good screenshots can mean the difference between a new user or no user! Therefore spend some time creating screenshots that really attract attention.
Homework for your shiny new Android app
Add a check to disallow feed names less than 3 characters long. Clue: Something to do with checking the length of the text within an EditText box....
Check the RSS address is correct (maybe see if it starts with HTTP ?). Alternatively you could connect to the internet and check the response of the address. Have a look at the Google developer website and search for 'connecting to a URL', that should get you started.
Arrange the RSS items on the front page by date published. You will probably have to add a pubDate item to your RssItem class...
At the moment we only show stories from all feeds. Create a GUI that allows a user to filter the items by individual feed. Clue: Maybe sort your ListView by section....
Check the Android internet connection is working before getting feed items. If no internet connection available come up with a way of telling your user. Then allow them to manually refresh the feeds or get the app to do it automatically.
Round up and farewell
We recap all you have learnt, and I congratulate you for coming so far. Alas, I also say farewell!