Secure Bespoke Android app development

Security is at the heart of the low-cost enterprise Android apps we develop...

Knowledge is power!

We try to soak up all the blue-sky thinking coming from Google's Android Engineering Team such as their new Build Out initiative...

Custom built enterprise Android apps

We specialise in the development of bespoke business-critical Android apps in the UK...

Welcome to App Developers for Android ™

We are a boutique mobile app development company (New Media Aid Ltd) based in Hitchin, Hertfordshire, UK, focused on Android app development.

We develop bespoke mobile applications for the Android platform by leveraging almost 20 years of hard-won skill and expertise in commercially-proven app development. We build robust, state-of-the-art Android apps with a focus on business apps integrating with corporate IT systems.

Bespoke, secure and scalable Android apps
Delivered on time and on budget
Highly competitive rates
Happy to sign NDAs (Non-Disclosure Agreements)
All Android app development work done in-house
Only 30 mins from London and Cambridge


How we currently develop Android apps

As we have been developing custom Android apps for UK businesses since the first stable version of Android in 2009, we have generally stuck to tried and tested methods of exchanging data between a client’s corporate systems and the apps we’ve built and which are installed on workers’ smartphones and tablets. In short we have tended to exchange data in JSON format and convert the photos taken and signatures captured into Base64 arrays to recompile on client servers.
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However, the only constant is change in this game!

The Android operating system, and Android app development in general, is evolving so quickly that sometimes it is hard to keep pace with developments. However, here at App Developers for Android ™ we try to keep ahead of the curve by continuously learning about advances in Android development by following the resources shown below.

Android Developers YouTube Channel

This is where Google's Android team place demos, tutorials, and anything else related to Android development. This is invaluable information for developers.

Google Developers Blog

Google's latest news and updates for Android app developers. Here we find out first about new APIs which will allow us to code state-of-the-art Android apps.

Build Out

Build Out is where Google engineers present competing architectures to demonstrate how Google's developer products can be integrated into cutting-edge Android apps.

Google I/O

Google I/O is an annual developer festival held at Mountain View, California. Here you see presentations, demonstrations and codelabs for the latest Android developments.

Google Developers Codelabs

Here you can see videos from Google's Android engineering team that guide developers through integrating new cutting-edge features into their Android apps.

Android Architecture Components

A collection of libraries that help us develop testable and maintainable Android apps. A library is a collection of precompiled routines that our apps can use.

Android API Package Index

These are the Android API packages. A package is a namespace that organises a set of related classes and interfaces, essential reading for app developers.

Android API Class Index

Each Android API package contains classes which are the building blocks of Java. A class is a template that describes the data and behaviour of instances of that class.

How we will be developing Android apps in the future?

After following assiduously the recent slew of Google developer product launches aimed at the next generation of Android app development, allowing for Big Data, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning capabilities via a smartphone, we are moving towards the next stage of our Android app development journey and aim to incorporate the next generation of best-of-breed app development technologies into the custom-made Android apps we will develop for our clients.

Here below you can see just some of the exciting new developer products released by Google which we intend to harness to the full to add value to our bespoke app development solutions.

Compute Engine

Google Compute Engine provides virtual machines running in Google's data centers and using their worldwide fiber network. This allows us to scale from single instances to global, load-balanced cloud computing.

App Engine Flex

App Engine allows us to focus on writing code and the App Engine flexible environment automatically scales the app up and down while balancing the load. We can customise the runtime and even the operating system.

Cloud Storage

Google Cloud Storage allows for the world-wide storage and retrieval of any amount of app data at any time. Particularly useful for storing large data-sets and for disaster recovery (as well as distributing large data loads).

Cloud Datastore

Cloud Datastore automatically handles replication and provides a durable database that scales automatically to handle your application's load. Cloud Datastore provides a myriad of high-end database capabilities.

BigQuery

BigQuery allows us to capture and analyse massive amounts of data in real-time using its powerful streaming ingestion capability. BigQuery is free for up to 1TB of data analysed each month and 10GB of data stored.

Cloud Pub/Sub

Cloud Pub/Sub is part of Google Cloud’s stream analytics solution, the service ingests event streams and delivers them to Cloud Dataflow for processing and BigQuery for analysis as a data warehousing solution.

Cloud Dataflow

Cloud Dataflow is a fully-managed service for transforming and enriching real-time data with virtually limitless capacity to solve your biggest data processing challenges, while paying only for what you use.

Android Things SDK

Android Things development is similar to traditional Android mobile development and involves writing apps to be installed on embedded boards running the Android Things operating system (e.g. smart home devices).

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML)

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) are often confused. Whilst Artificial Intelligence has been around for many years (most stocks and shares are traded automatically by software using Artificial Intelligence), Machine Learning (i.e. allowing apps to access data and then learn for themselves) is much more cutting-edge, especially when harnessing the power of neural networks which teach applications to think like humans whilst being far better than humans with regard to speed of computation and eliminating human error.

Following many years work by researchers and engineers working on the Google Brain Team within Google's Machine Intelligence research organisation, Google has just released on Android 8.1 (API level 27) their new Neural Networks API which is designed for running computationally intensive operations for machine learning on mobile devices. Together with the new TensorFlow Lite API released on 14 November 2017, a lightweight solution for mobile and embedded devices enabling on-device machine learning and supporting hardware acceleration with the Android Neural Networks API, we are about to enter very exciting times in the world of Enterprise Android app development when combining Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning capabilities into the custom-made Android apps we develop for clients. Hold on to your hats…

Neural Networks API TensorFlow Lite


If testing doesn't pick up a bug?

Don't worry! We've got it covered! We build bug and error monitoring into all the Android apps we develop so we know instantly if there is a problem! We integrate ACRA (a leading open-source bug/crash reporting library) into all the Android apps we develop. This means we get instant notification if any of our apps crash or throw any type of error. This allows us to deal proactively with any issues which were not identified during our extensive pre-release testing.
Android app error reporting

Android App Development Case Studies

Please find below some examples of the bespoke Android apps we develop for clients.

Weblight

With clients like Tesco, Marks & Spencer, Barclays, TK Maxx & Sainsbury’s, the number one commercial lighting company in the UK needed a bespoke Android app for their lighting engineers. We developed the Android app.

Phoenix Group

With their bottling systems handling 15 million bottles a year, the UK’s largest cold pressed seed oil producer required an Android app for real-time production reporting. We developed the Android app for them.

Wing Parking

Managing car parks on behalf of many local authorities such as Islington, Kensington & Chelsea and Westminster they needed a bespoke Android app to plan their parking control operatives' rounds and report on issues.

Parker Hannifin

With annual sales of $12 billion, Parker Hannifin is a global leader in motion and control technologies. We developed a bespoke Android app for just-in-time stock conrol integrating with their EDI systems.

Leathermarket JMB

As Southwark’s largest resident-managed housing organisation, managing 1,500 homes between London Bridge and Tower Bridge, their maintenance officers wanted an a custom-made Android app to manage their rounds and tasks.

Just Filters

With clients such as Compass, Fullers, Black & Decker, Mercedes Benz, Panasonic & Royal Marsden Hospital, the technicians maintaining canopy grease filters at the UK’s busiest kitchens needed a bespoke Android app to manage jobs.

Hammond Produce

Producing over 50,000 tonnes of fresh vegetables each year for leading retailers and supermarkets throughout the UK, they required a bespoke Android app for Production Line Management & Quality Control. We developed it for them.

Curries Online

This online take away ordering system allows real-time ordering of curries from thousands of restauarants and take aways in the UK. They needed a bespoke Android app to manage orders and send to printers in the restaurant kitchens.

What is Android?

Android is the world’s most popular mobile operating system currently running on almost 90% of all smartphones worldwide.

The Android operating system is developed in-house by Google and then for each new version the source code is made available to the Android Open Source Project members (e.g. hardware manufacturers such as Samsung, HTC, LG, etc.). These manufacturers then tend to spend time adapting the Android source code for their devices. As we always like to be developing against the latest version of Android (with backward compatibility of course) we make sure the core Android devices we have here in the office are from Google's Nexus range (or since October 2017 from their Pixel range) so we get the latest "pure" version of Android to develop and test our apps against and of course we get the very latest updates and security patches before they would be released by OEM manufacturers such as Samsung on their devices.

Android has the largest installed base of any operating system, more than Microsoft Windows!

Whilst Android apps can be written in a number of programming languages, for now we are sticking with the tried and trusted official Android programming language, Java. However, we are keeping an eye on Google’s new Android programming language Kotlin to see how this pans out in case it allows us to offer better Android apps in the future. Once we have coded an app in Java we then use the Android SDK to compile that code into an APK file (the Android Package) and it is this .apk file which users then install on their Android smartphone or tablet (or for that matter any number of different Android-enabled devices).

How times have changed!

When we first started developing Android apps back in circa 2009, the developer support was terrible i.e. Android development software was very poor and kept crashing - there was basically only the Eclipse IDE with the Android Development Tools (ADT) plugin. At that time the Android API and operating system documentation was forever out of date and always changing.

Thankfully these days there is a choice of robust Android development software (we use the latest version of Android Studio as this is maintained by Google and allows us to stay cutting-edge) and the Android team at Google are now great at providing detailed Android app development APIs with up-to-date documentation.

A prehistoric Android app from 2009!

Below is an example of a first-generation (almost prehistoric) Android app we developed for an aviation logistics client back in 2009 when Android was first released (this allowed their fleet of 30 lorry drivers to get real-time job details so they could for example get an aircraft braking system component to an aircraft stuck on the ground at Heathrow airport).



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Contact Us

App Developers for Android ™
New Media Aid Ltd
8 Bunyan Road
Hitchin
Hertfordshire
SG5 1NW
United Kingdom

☎ 01462 658 688
ab@android-app-developer.co.uk