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Beginning Android™ 4 Application Development by Wei-Meng Lee

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Chapter 1

Getting Started with Android Programming

WHAT YOU WILL LEARN IN THIS CHAPTER

  • What is Android?
  • Android versions and its feature set
  • The Android architecture
  • The various Android devices on the market
  • The Android Market application store
  • How to obtain the tools and SDK for developing Android applications
  • How to develop your first Android application

Welcome to the world of Android! When I was writing my first book on Android (which was just less than a year ago), I stated that Android was ranked second in the U.S. smartphone market, second to Research In Motion’s (RIM) BlackBerry, and overtaking Apple’s iPhone. Shortly after the book went to press, comScore (a global leader in measuring the digital world and the preferred source of digital marketing intelligence) reported that Android has overtaken BlackBerry as the most popular smartphone platform in the U.S.

A few months later, Google released Android 3.0, code named Honeycomb. With Android 3.0, Google’s focus in the new Software Development Kit was the introduction of several new features designed for widescreen devices, specifically tablets. If you are writing apps for Android smartphones, Android 3.0 is not really useful, as the new features are not supported on smartphones. At the same time that Android 3.0 was released, Google began working on the next version of Android, which can be used on both smartphones and tablets. In October 2011, Google released Android 4.0, code named Ice Cream Sandwich, and that is the ...

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