There’s never been a better time to design an app. Today, over 3 billion people use smartphones, so you have an enormous market for your app once it hits Google Play and the App Store. It’s not an easy process, but it’s certainly possible to learn how to code an app.
In this article, we’ll go over the basics of building iOS and Android apps, along with some useful tips to help bring your app idea into reality.
If you don’t know how to code, don’t worry. Career Karma can set you up with fast coding education programs that’ll teach you everything you’ll need to know. While it’s possible to learn on your own, attending a programming course will give you access to trained instructors and set you up for a real tech career.
App development is a satisfying and potentially lucrative skill, and we’ll help you get started on the right track.
The Basics of Mobile App Development
Before we get into the step by step guide to creating an app, we first need to set the stage for the app development process.
Like most other kinds of software development, building an app requires that you know how to code. There are a couple of different ways you can approach this. Arguably the best place to start is deciding which platform you want to work on, with the two major options being Android and iOS. This matters because where your app will run will determine the programming language and environment you’ll be working in.
Coding for iOS
Apple products, such as iPhone and iPad, use an operating system called iOS. Developers usually build apps for this platform using a coding language called Objective-C, which is one of many C variants. Apple chose this language as their primary code, so it’s essential to master. You’ll likely need to use some other coding languages when building your iOS app, such as:
In addition, Python—a popular language renowned for being easy to learn—is also a common tool for building modules, libraries, and back end tasks like storing data for the iOS platform.
How and when you use each of these languages depends on what you intend to do with your app. Many of these are usable for Android development too. You can research them yourself online, or ask your coding instructor for more information. For iOS, we think it’s best to start with Objective-C or Swift.
Coding for Android
For Android, the official language is Java. Being an old and established object-oriented language, Java has the advantage of being stable and having a vast community of users you can turn to when you need advice. Plus one of the most popular software tools for building Android apps, Android Studio, uses Java.
Additionally, many developers choose to code their apps with C and C++. The technical requirements of your app will dictate which languages you choose to work with. Android app development is flexible, and you can also code with other languages like:
There are a lot of language options for Android development. While you’re not limited or required to use the extra languages, you can do so at your discretion. Favored coding languages shift constantly, so it’s best to do your research regularly.
Other Useful Tools
Apart from the above considerations, there are some tools it’d be good to know about. Examples include:
- imagex, a command-line tool that enables capturing an entire hard drive as a Windows Imaging Format file.
- Intellij, which is a platform-independent IDE specifically tailored for writing Java.
- Flutter, Google’s toolkit for building native apps for Android, the web, or desktop with only one codebase. (This will obviously be of less interest to iOS developers, but it’s still a good thing to be aware of)
- Xamarin, Microsoft’s cross-platform development platform which extends the older .NET platform. This makes it easy to get an app built for a variety of mobile environments.
How to Get Started
There’s never been a better time to get into app development. Now that you’re familiar with the process, it’s time to learn how to code the app itself. Learning how to create your own code can be daunting for beginners, and going at it alone is unnecessary. Download our free app, join a community of aspiring developers, and we’ll help set you up with the right coding classes for you.