Clay Allsop’s RubyMotion Tutorial appears to be the most complete tutorial on the topic online. If you don’t relish the idea of programming in Objective-C but want to write native iPhone apps, you should check out this tutorial and see if coding apps in Ruby with RubyMotion is for you.
If you’re feeling really ambitious, you can fork the tutorial on GitHub and rewrite or expand upon your own version.
AIDE: Android Java IDE
AIDE, the Android Java IDE, lets you code apps for Android devices on an Android device. It’s fully compatible with Eclipse projects, supports the full edit-compile-run cycle and has an editor with desktop IDE features like code completion, real-time error checking, refactoring and smart code navigation. According to the description, AIDE will “turn your Android tablet with keyboard into a real development box” and will “turn your Android Phone into a small development computer to browse and touch your code on the go.”
iOS Image Tricks
Adam from Dwellable, the app for finding and reviewing vacation rental homes, shares some iOS image tricks that he used while taking the iPad version of the app and converting it into an iPhone app. These tricks we necessary the app, while it ran acceptably on the iPhone 4, was unacceptable slow on older units like the iPhone 3. The tricks he discusses are:
- Using an image pipeline to serve the right image for older iPhones, retina iPhones and iPads
- Using spriting — instead of sending a number of images, send a single large image made up of a bunch of images
- Using 16-bit images with older devices to conserve memory
Designing for Android: Tips and Techniques
Here’s a guide for designers to help them design for Android, whose ecosystem has many combinations of OS, screen size, aspect ratio and pixel density. In combination with the design guidelines on the Android Design site, this guide will help you make beautiful, usable Android apps.
ManiacDev’s Catalog of Open Source iPhone and iPad Apps
ManiacDev has updated their list of iOS apps for which the source code is available — there are now 85! 67 are currently available in the App Store, and while the remainder aren’t, they were at one time and you can still get the source for all of them. There’s nothing like learning from source code for complete, released applications, and I haven’t seen a bigger collection of such for iOS. If you’re interested in the source for games only, ManiacDev has a “just the games” list.
TheNewBoston.com’s 200-Episode Android Tutorial Video Series
TheNewBoston.com has a video series made up of 200 videos covering Android development. The series starts with downloading and installing the JDK, Eclipse and the Android SDK, covers a lot of ground on writing Android apps, and ends with putting an app on the market and updating it. The presentation style is extremely casual and even made me chuckle a couple of times. I think it’s a pretty good launching point: use these videos as your launching point, back them up with the Android docs, and you’ll be on your way.
Making Money in the App Store in “The Next 19%”
Dave Addey does some back-of-the-envelope calculations and says that while it’s increasingly unlikely for you to get your app in the top 1% of Apple’s App Store, you’ve got decent odds for getting your app into the sweet spot of what he calls “The Next 19%”. He says that if the numbers he’s using are representative, the iOS App Store breaks down this way:
||How many apps?
||%age of Revenue
||Average income per app
||36%, or $1.75 billion
|The “Next 19%”
||61%, or $3.05 billion
||3%, or $150 million
With the App Store maturing, hitting that top 1% increasingly requires sizeable investment and marketing in addition to app development skills. Successfully launching a 1% app (even with sizeable investment) isn’t something you’d bet your mortgage on, and I’d go as far as to say that this top end of the store is no longer a market that’s available to small independent developers.
The next 19%, however, is definitely a viable aspiration. Most of the paid apps we’ve released have fitted comfortably within the upper bounds of this part of the graph (beating the 19% average mentioned above), and these kinds of apps are definitely within reach of small development teams or sole developers.