XDA News Articles

Jimmy McGee · Sep 7, 2013

The Problem with Open Source Software – XDA Developer TV

Here at XDA, we love open source software. That's not just because of its cost, though that doesn't hurt. There are many reasons open source software is great: security, quality, freedom, customizability, and being able to see what the code does for yourself. But let's not be blind fanboys. There are, as the title says, problems with open source software in certain situations. In today's video, Jayce talks about the problems with open source software. He interviews Huw Collingbourne of...

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Will Verduzco · Sep 5, 2013

Remote Metadata Provider Library for Easily Music Controls

Recently, we featured a guide by XDA Senior Member Dr.Alexander_Breen aimed at bringing lockscreen-like music controls to your app. However, the method was overly complicated for many users. So in order to make the process easier, Dr.Alexander_Breen has created the open source library Remote Metadata Provider. And since it's licensed with Apache 2.0, you can use in your projects (commercial or not). Remote Metadata Provider allows you to create your own remote media controls, which behave similarly to the lock screen music...

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Jimmy McGee · Sep 1, 2013

Day-in-the-life of a Software Developer – XDA Developer TV

While it may not be true in all circles; at least at XDA, being a developer is looked upon highly. Developers are respected and many people strive to become them. But what is it really like? The life of a software developer can be challenging---full of up and downs, successes and failures. In today's video, Jayce talks about what a day in the life of a software developer is made of, and it might not be what you expect. He...

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Will Verduzco · Aug 31, 2013

Create Holo-Themed Demo Overlays with ShowcaseView

One week ago, we featured a guide by XDA Senior Member marty331 posted in our App Development forums aimed at helping application developers create in-app usage tutorials using transparent demo overlays atop application activities. However, not everybody is a designer able to create aesthetically appealing overlays. Luckily, XDA Senior Member nikwen discovered the open source ShowcaseView library by Alex Curran, which makes it easy to generate Holo-themed demo overlays with ease. In addition to describing the Apache 2-licensed library, nikwen also put together a quick guide that teaches developers how to...

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Will Verduzco · Aug 27, 2013

Migrate from Eclipse to Android Studio

Recently, we've been talking quite a bit about the Android Studio IDE. Launched originally at Google I/O 2013, Android Studio aims at replacing Eclipse + Android Developer Tools, and bringing a few niceties such as live code rendering for different layouts. As with any big change, some developers have experienced a few growing pains ranging from differences in handling external libraries to pains during initial setup. Aside from problems, just learning a new way of doing things can also be...

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Will Verduzco · Aug 27, 2013

Open Source Android SMS and MMS Library

In our continuing coverage of the App Development forums here at XDA, we've featured various open source libraries that  enable you to quickly add in functionality into your app-in-progress without having to reinvent the wheel. These libraries have streamlined app development in topics ranging from UI design and data visualization  to application updates and everything in between. Now, thanks to XDA Senior Member klinkdawg, there is an open source library for SMS and MMS messaging. After gaining knowledge while creating his own messaging app, klinkdawg released his library with...

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Will Verduzco · Aug 26, 2013

How to Use Google Play Services Library with Android Studio

We've written about Android Studio a few times in the past. Google's would-be replacement for Android Developer Tools first made its appearance at Google I/O 2013. Based on Jetbrains IntelliJ, Android Studio offers many benefits over the older ADT such as live code rendering to see how your app will look across a variety of devices and layouts, as well as the ability to easily add any Android API into your app's code. However, the transition hasn't been without its share...

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Will Verduzco · Aug 26, 2013

Optimize Your Mono Coding with Some Command Shortcuts

Are you a developer using Mono for Android to develop pseudo-cross platform code using C# or .Net? If so, you may wish to save a few keystrokes for commonly executed commands. XDA Senior Member ScatteredHell has created a DLL that works with Mono for Android to execute various commands. Originally, it supported obtaining system uptime, as well as some commonly used root-level commands such as mounting and unmounting the system as Read/Write and Read-Only, Rebooting, Setting Permissions, and Playing a Boot Animation....

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Jimmy McGee · Aug 25, 2013

The Smart Way to Price Your Mobile App – XDA Developer TV

There are a lot of free apps in the Google Play store. If that's true, how do developers make money for their hard work? Banner Ads? Freemium? Begging? What if I make a break for the pack and charge for my app. How do I pick what to charge? In today's video, Jayce talks about choosing the price for your mobile app smartly. He talks about the history of software pricing. Jayce gives some great information from across the web....

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Will Verduzco · Aug 24, 2013

Create App Usage Tutorials with Transparent Demo Pages

We've all seen those in-app usage tutorials before. You know, I'm talking about the ones that use transparency to show you what the app's buttons do, or how you go about accomplishing a certain task. It's just good practice to show your users upon first launch how to use your app, and since most people learn best by example, walking them through visually with an in-app usage tutorial is optimal. After learning how to add an in-app demo to his...

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Jimmy McGee · Aug 24, 2013

How To Choose a Killer App Idea – XDA Developer TV

Everyone has an idea for the next killer app. However, these ideas are often like armpits: Everyone has one, and they all stink. Yet, there are ways to think about the needs of the market and make an app to fill them. But how can you come up with a killer app idea? In today's video, Jayce talks about choosing a killer app idea. He talks about how to look at the market and evaluate what's already done and what...

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Will Verduzco · Aug 19, 2013

Prod Your App’s Users to Update with UpdateChecker Library

Think back to all those times when your non-tech savvy parents have called you over for free computer tech support. What's one unifying theme from all of these instances? If your loved ones are anything like mine, it's a horde of uninstalled updates awaiting approval. This is unfortunately all too common, as most of the technologically illiterate simply ignore update notifications, without realizing that these updates often patch vulnerabilities and add important features. Luckily on Android, updates can be set...

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Jimmy McGee · Aug 18, 2013

How Non-Coders Created a Hugely Successful App – XDA Developer TV

There is a secret in the app development world. Everyone thinks that the only people who are able to make any money in app development are people who know code. Guess what---that's not always the case. Sometimes, someone with vision can take an app or an idea and turn in into the next hot app. In today's video, Jayce talks about how non-coders created a hugely successful app. He talks about how Prerna Gupta and Parag Chordia as non-developers made...

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Will Verduzco · Aug 18, 2013

Beginner’s Guide on Building Your First Android App

If you've ever thought about building a mobile application but put these dreams aside for whatever reason, now's the time to get started. And with over a million new device activations per day, the mobile platform that will give you the most potential reach is clearly the Android OS. So how do you go about building your first Android application? Well, that's where XDA Senior Member Nachiket.Namjoshi is hoping to chime in with his tutorial thread. The guide is aimed at individuals...

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Jimmy McGee · Aug 17, 2013

New Developers’ Greatest Opportunity – XDA Developer TV

Many people in the first world take the Internet and computers for granted. However, other countries are coming online and they are jumping right to mobile and smartphone devices. Could this be a good opportunity for developers? Why should you care about the next 2 billion people coming on the Internet? In today's video, Jayce talks about how the next billion people to come online are the next market for developers. He talks about how developers can seize this opportunity....

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Will Verduzco · Aug 15, 2013

Android Studio 0.2.4 Released, Improvements for App Devs

Back at Google I/O 2013, Android Studio was released in beta form. The tool, which was released with the help of Jetbrains and based on IntelliJ, featured various "killer features" such as live rendering of your code and the ability to easily add any API into your code. Since then, we've talked a little about it, including troubleshooting tips for setup and a graphing library compatible with the tool. Now, version 0.2.4 has been released, bringing with it several key...

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Adam Outler · Aug 14, 2013

Click Packages and Unofficial XDA App Now Available for Ubuntu Touch

The line between an OS and an application is drawn by the ability to install applications.  The Ubuntu Touch OS is in a state of constant evolution.  The current system is dependent upon Click packages.  Click packages are similar to the old Debian packaging system. However in the Click system, all dependencies are included in the application itself. This creates a sort of sandbox, which allows the app to have its own filesystem that it controls in a similar fashion...

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Jimmy McGee · Aug 14, 2013

XDA:DevCon 2013 Event Roundup – XDA Developer TV

This last weekend the very first XDA:DevCon, which took place in Miami, Florida. There were many people there, and lots of learning and fun was had. Numerous sponsors, speakers, and people were there taking part in the festivities. However, we know that not everyone could make it, so XDA Developer TV Producer Jordan attended and took some video and pictures of the event. Jordan talks about his experience at the event. He shows off his video and pictures. If you...

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Will Verduzco · Aug 13, 2013

Reduce Overdraw in Your App to Increase UI Performance

It's no secret that many mobile devices, especially older ones, often struggle with GPU-intensive drawing tasks. This generally manifests itself in choppy UI performance. And if you're an app developer, this results in a kludgy application that your users will find burdensome to use. We all know that excessive overdraw is bad. But how do we go about limiting it? Using Android's built-in developer options, you can easily visualize the amount of overdraw in any hardware accelerated view. XDA Forum...

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Jimmy McGee · Aug 11, 2013

How a D Student Became an Elite Developer – XDA Developer TV

You've heard it before, and we'll say it again: People learn differently. Some people learn only by doing. Some people learn by reading. Others learn by listening. Is learning about software engineering any different? In today’s video, XDA Developer TV Producer Jayce talks about learning software development. While many classes teach programming theory, Jayce suggests that maybe if you just started actually making an app, you would learn better. He also interviews Don Bora, a software engineer who is a...

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