Archives: mobile development

Rx Wrapper How-To for Critical Resource Tasks

Android contains several APIs that hold resources back. They need to be released before closing the current Activity or any other UI part. Doing things the old way, you are responsible for releasing these resources at the end of each activity. With complex tasks, it becomes quite hard to keep track of all of these resources. It is even more complicated when you use them in asynchronous tasks. A small programming overhead will eliminate this problem by replacing the async tasks with Rx streams and scheduling them on the background threads. So, Rx wrappers will ease thread handling. Here is how I use Rx wrappers to make them as awesome as possible:

A Native Mobile Dev’s Favorite Libraries

A junior developer starts to develop everything by himself. However, a little experience or help will teach him that it’s not useful to write every little piece of code on his own. Enthusiastic developers provide a lot of good and widely tested solutions for problems almost everyone faces during development. Using these libraries can save you […]

Android Developers! Here are 5 of the Best Video Transcoding Libraries +1 for Only Audio!

Some Android Projects might require high or low level media processing. This article rounds up a few useful libraries, like FFmpeg, MP4Parser, Intel Media for Mobile, etc. All the libraries have both pros and cons. You need to carefully consider, according to your initial target API-s, devices, and specification, which one you’ll use . I won’t go into too much detail, the article’s main purpose is to help you decide which lib fits best for a given issue. The selected library or libraries can have great effect on the size of your final application, and will also affect the code complexity and amounts of future maintenance.

 

7 Android Logging Tools Tested & Compared

Logging is essential during development. Therefore, the Android SDK provides the public with a default logger. It is easy to use: we can add tags and also separate logs by different levels.

The SDK’s defult logger is not bad and it’s enough for the basics. But hopefully developers think logging should result in far more than just the basics.

Creating a Custom Cordova Plugin

At Wanari, we usually prefer native Android & iOS development and my colleagues have recently written quite a few articles on these topics. However, as a web developer, cross-platform mobile app development options stand closer to my heart. In this article, I provide an example for creating a custom Cordova plugin.     Cordova is a […]

ConstraintLayout on Android – How Ready Is It?

Introduction to the new Android ConstraintLayout

ConstraintLayout is a new Android layout type presented at the Google IO. It has several new features including a new Layout Editor built in the new Android Studio. (currently on the Canary channel v2.2 Preview 2) The reason for this new layout is to reduce the view hierarchy’s depth and complexity. By using ConstraintLayout, you can optimize and speed up the UI rendering phase of your application. It is compatible with all the currently available Views and ViewGroups and it is part of the Android Support Library. It works down to API level 9.

The Best Crash Report Tools for Android Developers

If you are a budding mobile (iOS or Android) developer, this could be a good place to start with your first release, but if you are a seasoned veteran, maybe this can widen your knowledge or even show you a few new ways worth trying.

If you let a version of your app out of your hand, you will know nothing about it – just bad reviews in the AppStore or on Google Play, but not a single detail you can rely on. This makes crashlogs a must have kit. I recommend you add crashlogs not only to the release versions of your app, but before the first alpha tests.

Your tests will transform into a meaningful report, not just “Something went wrong here and here…”.

Previously, there was one catch-all solution for crash reports, BugSense. But now there are far more, some are even integrated into beta test systems, like Fabric and many others.

Everything You Need to Know About JSONJoy, SwiftyJSON & OCMapper

About JSON in general

In today’s world, most of the mobile and web applications we write include some background activity with an API, like handling user info, or fetching data. Over 90% of the time (I didn’t look up the exact number, I’m sure you will forgive me) the servers respond with a JSON object containing the information we desire. If you’re unfamiliar with the structure of a JSON object, it’s definitely worth looking into. There are quite a few greatly designed tutorials on the topic, there’s one on W3Schools, for example.

Once we receive the API response, we generally want to pass this information to our business logic, and eventually to our viewcontrollers.

The most straightforward way would be to deserialize this string (it is essentially nothing more than textual data) into a valid JSON object. These objects are usually a hierarchy of dictionaries and arrays. However, accessing these values from the root object is a pain in the rear. It’s time-consuming, produces messy code, and it’s unsafe. A typo in our code while accessing a key will not produce any errors, since the keys are strings. Without the keen eyes of an experienced developer, who can spot a typo from a mile off, debugging these coding errors takes a lot longer than it should.

How to Render More Than a Lot of Markers on Google Maps for Android

The purpose of the article is to demonstrate a method on how to extend the capabilities of the Google Maps API on Android devices. Basically, Google Maps can render only a limited number of markers over the map, let’s say a few thousand, but with larger numbers it will start to lag and will ruin […]