Android Developer Tools and Setup

Android Studio

The beauty of the Android platform is it allows developers to develop their applications and tools. This is the biggest benefit of an open-source platform. There are two types of tools available on the Android platform, SDK Tools and Platform tools. In the section below, we will check each of these variants. These tools can be installed on Android Studio. Android Studio provides an integrated development environment for development on the Android platform.

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SDK Tools

The SDK tools are not dependent on any specific platform. No matter which Android platform has been selected by the developer, he needs the SDK tools. To access these tools, one can simply install the Android SDK. Once the SDK suite is installed, all the tools within it will be accessible. Some of the key tools available in SDK are:

  • Android: This tool can be used for managing the AVDs. AVDs are the virtual devices available on the android platform. These tools are also used for managing the installed components and existing projects.
  • DDMS: DDMS is used for debugging Android applications.
  • Emulator: Emulator allows the developer to test his application in a simulated environment without even installing it on a physical device
  • Mksdcard: With this tool, one can create a disk image that can be used with an emulator. This tool can be extremely handy in testing those applications which require external storage.
  • Proguard: Proguard helps in code removing the code, which might be unwanted or unused. It is useful for novice developers, or learners who have just started developing on the Android platform.
  • Traceview: In case if a developer wants to check the execution logs in graphical mode for a particular application, then he needs to use Traceview.
  • Adb: It stands for Android Debug Bridge, which is a CLI tool that can communicate with a given emulator instant or even can connect with an Android-powered device.

Out of these tools which have been listed above, two tools are most important for the developers. These are Android and DDMS. Most of the development projects will be managed by the Android tool. Along with that, this tool will be used for managing the virtual instance that will be used by the developers. Similarly, DDMS is used by the developers for a host of debugging actions, such as screen capture, call spoofing, message formation, etc. One can launch the DDMS from the Android Studio.

Tools>Android>Android device Monitor

Platform Tools

These are the customized tools that support the features available on the latest Android platform. Every time a new SDK platform is installed, the platform tool gets updated. However, even after updating to the latest platform, these tools are backward compatible. Key platform tools used by the developers are:

  • Android Interface Definition Language (AIDL)
  • Android Debug Bridge (ADB)
  • Dexdump

Installing SDK on Android Platform

  1. Launch the Android Studio.
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  3. Go to Configure -> SDK Manager. This will be there on the landing page.
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  5. Once the application is launched. Go to the Tools menu, and click on Android, and then SDK manager.
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  7. Go to the Default Settings page, select the options SDK Platforms and SDK Tools.
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  9. Click on Apply, and then Ok.