Thursday, September 5, 2013

Building Hybrid Android Apps with Java and JavaScript

This the first edition of what is starting to be most important web development nowadays.

"Building Hybrid Android Apps with Java and JavaScript" is a book from O'Reilly and was given to me free in exchange of this review. You can find it here:

I wanted to read about the subject because i will need to do a project in the near future and have to decide whether or not the app should be

Native apps, built for a specific platform with the platform SDK (which is isn´t totally free).
Mobile Web apps are server-side apps, built with any server-side technology (PHP, Node.js, ASP.NET) that render HTML that has been styled so that it renders well on a device form factor. This solution is a steep harder developpment curve than the previous one.
And the Hybrid apps, like native apps, run on the device, and are written with web technologies (HTML5, CSS and JavaScript). A web-to-native abstraction layer enables access to device capabilities that are not accessible in Mobile Web applications, such as the accelerometer, camera and local storage.
Thinking of JQuery mobile and other libraries that really embed the app in the browser and taking full advantage of html5 to do stuff such as local storage for off-line usage! And no need to know Java, Objective-C and other SDK language related to native app. THis hybrid apps will be written -almost- once and will work in any device.

The book "Building Hybrid Android Apps with Java and JavaScript"gives a very general but accurate and detailed view of the concept, tools and steps you need to follow to successfully create your hybrid app.

The book focuses on developping android hybrid app using Eclipse IDE. All the Android tools (debugger, virtual machine,etc.) are described and you can start from scratch without knowing anything about this area in particular of software development and yet creating you hybrid app. A large part of the book shows how is the interaction -the glue!- between the mobile browser WebKit and the call from/to java to JavaScript and vice-verso.

The book mentioned also a lightweight web application framework developed for building hybrid applications that can be found in github site.

It even shows you how to publish it in android market, sorry, Google Play! And Amazon app store!

I would definitively recommend it but i would say that this is really a starting point. A lot of code needs to be done and tested for a complete app.

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