Using Google App Inventor for Developing Android Apps

Google created a tool that allows you to create Android apps. You may be thinking that you have to use code to develop apps, and you’d be correct. However, App Inventor writes that code for you. It is simply a matter of dragging and dropping components and setting a few properties.

Before you head over to search for the Google App Inventor tool, be aware that Google discontinued it a while back. You may be thinking to yourself why is this article being written on a tool that no longer exists? The good news is that Google has licensed the technology to MIT. It is now officially the MIT App Inventor. Go ahead and search for that. You will find it.

The basic functionality of the tool hasn’t changed much since MIT took it over. They added some new components, but the premise remains unchanged. You drag items onto a canvas and then apply the appropriate properties and events.

Like many Graphic User Interface elements, App Inventor has an event-driven framework. You will need to understand the basics of this framework to successfully use the tool. Every component uses the event-driven model. For instance, when you place a button on the canvas, and the user clicks that button, a click event will be generated for that button. You can use that event to perform actions based on that click event.

It’s well beyond the scope of this article to describe the event-based architecture in detail. MIT offers plenty of tutorials on how this works and how to develop apps with the tool. It can be intimidating when you first start using the tool. But after going through the tutorials and playing around with the interface, you will find that it is intuitive and becomes easier to use.

You can use the App Inventor for your own use to develop apps that can help your business, or you can create applications to sell to others. The types of apps that can be developed can be quite sophisticated, and you won’t need to learn a programming language to make it happen. To come up with ideas for apps, think about those times where you said to yourself, “I wish there were an app that did:” and take it from there. The possibilities are limited only by your imagination so get started now with developing your own apps for the Android.



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