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What Android app developers need to know about Android O Preview 4

What Android app developers need to know about Android O Preview 4

In what will likely be of interest to Android developers around the world, Google has recently announced the arrival of Android O Preview 4. Providing much-needed insight into the future capabilities of the Android O Developer platform has been quite popular and well-received by the mobile app developer community, particularly amongst professional Android app developers who are ready to begin developing new titles for distribution with this cutting-edge release.

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Kotlin, the newly minted Android coding language

Kotlin, the newly minted Android coding language

The Android operating system has long been known for providing mobile app development companies with an “all-access” pass to one of the world’s most powerful coding platforms. Android has opened the doors to a more diverse array of hardware and software engagement, particularly when compared to the more restrictive Apple OS. Although Android has long been capable of hosting a variety of apps built in both Java and C++, the recent popularization of Kotlin, a Java-based programming language introduced in 2011, has dramatically redefined the scope and intuitiveness of Android at large.

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News for developers about Google I/O

Google I/O 2017

The long-awaited Google I/O finally went down recently near the company’s headquarters, the aptly named Googleplex, in Mountainview, California. The annual event is first and foremost a developer conference, but it also had a little bit of something for everyone else. The usual suspects were there; Android Wear, Google Assistant, Google TV and Google Home. There was plenty of SDK talk as well, but all eyes and ears were on the new, upcoming Android OS. The somewhat covertly-named Android O (which will most likely stand for Oreo) is currently in Beta and is set for release later this year.

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Android filters in the new Play Store version

Google Plus

Have you recently browsed through your installed apps and noticed that you still have Pokémon Go on there even though you haven’t opened it for months? Chances are that it’s not the only errant or forgotten app in your smartphone. Don’t worry, this behavior of collecting and casually forgetting about older or less used mobile apps is not a localized problem. In fact, Google has noticed it as well and believed that it could do a better job at helping Android users manage the apps in their phones. Scrolling through a seemingly endless list of mobile apps, then entering each app to uninstall it, only to return to the main list to continue to the hunt for wayward apps seems like a daunting task, and for many it is. It takes time, patience and attention, all the things that users these days seem to possess very little of.

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Launch checklist for Google Play Store

For many mobile app developers, regardless if it’s their first time or their hundredth time, releasing the app that they have been working hard on for such a long time can be very exciting and relieving. The time has finally come to set the idea loose in the marketplace, to see how it is received and what possibilities will arise. Of course, those that have already gone through the launch process know that there are hurdles to overcome before finally crossing that line and publishing the app in the Google Play Store. Familiarizing yourself with these items and how to deal with them makes the process that much quicker and easier.

Google Play Store

Launching an app can actually be quite an ordeal for some people. The hoops you have to go through, the formalities and regulations that need to be endured are enough to dissuade even the most ardent mobile app developers. However, by taking stock of the situation and systematically going through the checklist, by breaking things down into smaller, bite-sized chunks developers can ensure that they hit every step and successfully launch their app into the Google Play Store.
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Android Wear 2.0: new standalone devices

Smartwatches were hailed, at one point in time, as the next big thing when it came to mobile technology. The industry took the nostalgia from the era of Dick Tracy talking into his watch and catapulted it to the modern age of technology. Everyone is now comfortable interacting with their smartphones, tablets and other hypermobile devices, but for the main part smartwatches have been treated more as a novelty rather than as the powerful and revolutionary devices that they really are. This is especially true when it came to the smartwatches that were being powered by Google’s Android operating system.

Android wear 2.0 by Google

Google created the Android Wear OS for smartwatches.Just like it did with its smartphones, Google has allowed third party manufacturers to create and develop devices that will then run Android Wear. Sounds great in theory, and everyone else thought so. However, as devices were released new challenges faced Google and its smartwatch manufacturers like Samsung. There were two main gripes regarding Android Wear devices. The first was that there really weren’t any apps that were specifically built for Android Wear devices. The smartphone and tablet versions of the app merely sent a notification to the smartwatch in most instances. The second was that in order for the Android Wear device to function, even moderately, the smartphone needed to be in close proximity. Even though the devices look and functioned great, it was not as interactive as a smartphone and the overall user experience was much lower than expected. Google has pressed forward, and with their latest update of the Android Wear OS (appropriately named 2.0), has sought to bridge the gap in user experience and functionality.
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Google promotes progressive web apps now

Google continuously proves that it not only has the ability to go toe-to-toe with the best in the industry, but that it never stops pushing the boundaries of what is possible. The last couple of years we have seen consumers gravitate towards the mobile experience. To cope with this Google has been planning and testing out ways to blur those lines. But, with their latest rollout, Google has finally pulled the trigger and introduced a way to seamlessly merge the web and the mobile experience.

progressive web apps by Google

The feature is known as Progressive Web Apps, and as the name suggests it is supposed to take the web app experience to a whole new level for users and mobile app development companies. Web apps have been around for a while now, but they were second class citizens, at best, on most devices. When created, web apps were relegated to the home screen, appearing as just another icon. However, with this update Google allows web apps to take their rightful place with other full applications. For mobile app developers, this means that web apps also live in the app drawer and have the same notification controls. This level of integration has previously been unheard of.
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Google Cast SDK open for developers

The fall of 2016 heralded a new age for one of Google’s more famous products, Google Cast, or as it is now officially known as Chromecast built-in. The name may be less catchy and more of a mouthful, but it more accurately represents what is really going on. So adamant is Google with the name change that it has thrown the old term out to the wolves and has already began phasing it out from existence. Even third party companies and device makers have already started using the new nomenclature.

Google Cast

Chromecast has been around for several years now and users have been able to use the technology to create a bridge between their devices and a larger display such as an LCD TV or monitor. According to Google, the name change solidifies the identity and purpose in the users mind, by helping them identify the devices and technology that they can use on Chromecast.
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Tips for developers with Google Learn

Recently, tech giant Google has released the highly anticipated Playbook for developers app. This pairs nicely with another app, Primer by Google, which has been around for over a year now under the Google Learn channel umbrella on its Play Sotre.

Google Learn

Everyone that has access to Google Play can download and install both apps. Seen by industry insiders and customers alike as essential tools for those seeking to take their business to new heights using Google, these two apps provide newbies and grizzled veteran developer with an innovative way to arm themselves with the data, information and knowledge to meet their goals. Best of all, it’s free.
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What do app developers need to know about the Google Play developer console?

So your mobile app development company is ready to tackle the Android market and get your app in the hands of millions, but where to start?. Like most things in life, the first step is often the toughest due to the unfamiliarity that comes along with stepping foot into new territory. But, if you break down this monumental first step into bite-sized chunks it makes the whole process more manageable and more doable.

google play developr console

In the Android world this means that you have to get intimate with the Google Play Developer Console. From this console, developers are able to not only release their mobile app on the Android platform but also check on its status and the metrics which surround it.

To get the ball rolling, development companies must first register and setup for their Google Play developer account. This is a mere four step process but a very important one as without this step the chances of you having a successful app on the Android platform is zero.
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