This is a really good book on Android development.
I have been extensively programming in java for a few years. Recently
I was reading about a CIO summit in our area and each of the CIOs talked about
how significant the new mobile devices are for banking, transportation
I wanted to see how to quickly gain expertise in the mobile space to
my already well established enterprise skills.
This book has pointed out that I can be up and running with Android
very quickly even without buying a single android device. I could walk
through almost all the examples of this book through the emulator.
I also like the fact that most of the chapters (except for a couple at
the begining) are stand alone. Each chapter has working examples that
have been specifically developed for that chapter with few
pre-requisites. I am able to download the zip files for each chapter
so that I can import them directly into eclipse. Then I am able to
read through the chapter and look at the working example
simultaneously to make the most of it.
If you look at the google android developer website you see that
android offers an extensive set of APIs. I do find the android
documentation on the android site very good. However I needed a book
that is a bit more organized and take me from concept to concept in a
By comparison I can see that this book covers a number of android
basic features that include intents, resources, menus, dialogs,
controls, services, security, preferences, activities, and content
providers. Some of these concepts are very unique to Android. The
authors have gone into a lot of detail while covering these topics. I
must say this strengthened my appreciation of Android as a full
fledged programming platform.
I am also very pleased with the coverage of Android internals that
include processes, threads, handlers, asynchronous tasks, broadcast
receivers, wake locks, long running services, notification manager
I have always wanted to see what it means to program in opengl. This
book provides an excellent introduction to opengl including the opengl
es 2.0. Be warned though that this is not an extensive guide on
OpenGL. You may have to buy a 500 page book just to do justice to all
the intricacies of OpenGL. This book does have references to further
material that you can read on OpenGL. The animation chapter is really
fun to read. The other advanced topics covered include maps,
telephony, sensors, media.
The coverage on the contacts api is extensive and good.
It is really surprising how quickly this book was released with
coverage for tablets only after a month or two of the honeycomb
Finally for a senior programmer this book goes into how to dive into
the android sdk source code right in the introductory chapter. I found
this really useful when I am not sure how a particular functionality
works when the SDK documentation is not clear.
As I have listed so many things this book covers it is fair to list a
few things that it does not cover. Game programmign is not covered at
all. Live Wall Paper topic is not covered. If you are thinking of
using Bluetooth API to write cool applications it is not covered
But I am really happy with the book because I am able to gain a broad
picture of the Android SDK. I am able to understand its architecture.
I am able to explore its advanced APIs. I am left with a lot
references to supporting material in each chapter.
Excellent in all and all.
Oh, one more thing! The supplemental website that supports this book
androidbook.com seem to contain a lot of the working notes of authors
in addition to their future research on Android SDK.