Mobile app development tutorial Android

As you're aware, the Android SDK Manager downloads samples into a directory under your SDK installation. You could use these to start the project. You could even copy them out so you don't modify the originals. But, that's not how we're going to do it! There’s a better way!

Step 2: Start the Sample Project Wizard

In Eclipse, choose File > New > Other..., then expand the Android folder, and choose "Android Sample Project".

Step 3: Pick a Build Target

Next, you'll be presented with a list of build targets. What you see here is directly related to which API Level samples you have installed through the Android SDK Manager. What you see in our screenshot is probably overkill. Few will want to target Android 1.1 (Really).

You can only choose one build target for your project. To follow along, choose Android 4.1, Android Open Source Project, which is API Level 16.

Step 4: Pick a Sample Project

On the next screen, you'll be shown a variety of compatible sample projects to choose from. Projects that end in "> tests" are JUnit test projects that match up to a primary project. They are less interesting for the beginner, so stick to non-test projects for now.

Pick a sample project, then type in a name if you'd like to change it. Changing the name is useful if you've already created the sample project once and want to create a new version within the sample Eclipse workspace. To continue following along, pick ApiDemos. We're naming it "ApiDemo 4.1" so as not to confuse it with other ApiDemos samples from other SDK versions.

Step 5: Explore a Sample Project

Your new project will now show up in Eclipse. You can look through its files, packages, and the structure of the sample app. The ApiDemos sample app is particularly big, as it has sample code to demonstrate almost every core Android API.

Step 6: Launch a Sample Project

Let's compile and launch our new sample project on the emulator. First, start your emulator and wait for it to fully launch (forget how this works? See Android Virtual Device Creation).

Next, choose Run > Run Configurations...

Double-click on Android Application (or right-click and choose New). On the first tab, choose the Browse... button, pick your new sample project, and click OK.

Now fill in the Name field. We usually name our Run Configurations with the project name to avoid confusion but you can name it whatever you like. Run and Debug Configurations have different options such that you could want multiple configurations for a single project.

On the Target tab, check the radio button for "Always prompt to pick device." Take note of some of the other Run Configuration options, like the network speed and latency; we're not going to use any of these options right now but it’s worth knowing where they are.

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