Mobile App Development, Programming

Mobile App Development Languages

Programming Languages (PL) instruct computers and computing devices to perform a set of specific tasks, and like any human language, have a vocabulary, syntax and so on. High Level programming Languages execute computation and implement algorithms on sophisticated computing programs to achieve desired results. This end result may include control of external devices such as printers, production plants, “smart” weapons, robots, remote mining operations, medical surgery, and space rockets and so on. Mobile Apps Development (MAD) consists of acting or processing software applications for use on mobile devices such as smart phones, digital personal assistants, and similar enterprise digital assistants. In fact, it can be asserted that the Mobile Phone or Device is only as useful as the Apps developed for it. This requires special Programming Languages adapted to Mobile Device usage. It is therefore essential to first study which programming languages to learn for mobile app development.

Useful Programming Languages

Some programming languages to learn for mobile app development are as follows:

  • Java: Java is the most used PL for Mobile applications, and it has also been designated to be Android App Development’s official language. A large majority of Google Play Store apps have been developed with Java. The official support by Google and the popularity in the professional app development community means that if problems are faced during app development, there is help from the online community. At the same time, Java is a difficult language to master, particularly for Beginners. Topics like Concurrency, Constructors, Null Pointer and Checked Exceptions only add to the complexity, as does the instruction set provided by the ASDK (Android Software Development Kit). In general, while professionals often prefer Java, Beginners tend to shy away from it initially.
  • Kotlin: Kotlin removes much of the complexities of Java, and makes the Beginners life much simpler. In 2017 Kotlin has been pioneered as a secondary Java language officially, and can comfortably be inter-operating with Java. Its cross-platform functioning, and its ability to run on the JVM (Java Virtual Machine), makes it immensely flexible as an Android App Development entry point. In fact many well known dating apps, including the casual sex app meet n fuck, are built with Kotlin. Dating app companies often launch and test various platforms so the easy and cost effective entry point is attractive toward this type of mobile app.
  • C#: This PL, while being similar to Java, has a much simpler Syntax than Java. Coding in C# is therefore easier. Again, just like Java, garbage collection is implemented, so the probabilities of memory leaks are reduced substantially. The initial problem with C# for Mobile App Development (MAD) is that initially it was designed for use only on the Window system. But using ‘Xamarin.Android’ tools, C# may be useful for MAD also. The Code can now be shared across manifold platforms.
  • C++: C++ uses the ANDK (Android Native Development Kit) to carry out app development in Android. But it is very complex to use, and this creates more bugs. Debugging is a major problem. Though this gives access to C++ Code Libraries, as required, it does not provide as many benefits as Java, and is being used even less these days.
  • Python: Android did not support Python development originally. But now a number of tools have become available that may change the Python applications into Android Packages, which can then be run on Android compatible devices. A typical example is ‘Kivy’. This is used for MAD, but is actually a Python Library with Open Source. This has the dual advantage of facilitating rapid MAD, while still supporting Android.
  • Corona: This general Software Developing Kit is often used for development of Android apps using ‘Lua’. The Corona Simulator can build applications directly. Then the Corona Native can be opportune for integrating the Lua Code. Lua is simpler than Java and is also easier to learn. Also it has a number of plugins and assets that nourish the development experience. Of course, Lua is somewhat constricted in application. Corona finds its most popular applications in Games Graphic and Applications.
  • JavaScript, HTML, CSS: Apache Cordova powers the Adobe PhoneGap Framework, which allows the creation of hybrid apps which can be viewed through ‘WebView’, but are packed like an application. HTML, CSS and JavaScript uses the Adobe PhoneGap to create apps, but this is often quite time consuming and painstaking. This avenue for MAD is therefore generally avoided, and the other options outlined above are mostly used.

The first and most important point to note here is that the Open Source Android based MAD are worldwide in the domain of professional Mobile App Developers. But such is not the case with Apple iOS. Here, iOS is Proprietary, and belongs to the Apple group, therefore all MAD is Server-side and In-house. While this may mean greater Customer care from Apple, in case of malfunction, debugging or application questions, it also means that independent developers do not have any role to play in MAD. The question of learning PL for MAD therefore arises only in the case of Android mobile app development.