Google talked about the Android Studio integrated development environment, or IDE, back at the Google I/O 2013 and we covered it here. The idea behind the Android Studio application is that it will make life much easier for developers building applications for Android devices. Originally, Android Studio covered smartphones and tablets but has since been expanded to include Android Wear devices. The application environment includes many emulators and other tools to help developers, including live views of the impact that changes in code have and extensive debugging and optimization options. It's available for Windows, MacOS and LINUX as a free download. Studio includes built-in support for the Google Cloud Messaging (GCM) service, designed to greatly simplify how developers integrate GCM into their applications. The Google Cloud Messaging service is how notifications are pushed to our Android devices in a timely and battery efficient manner
Google have just released the Android Studio 1.0 Release Candidate 1 into the canary channel (for early release builds of the software). This means that the project is close to a 1.0 release and as such, leaving beta status. Google's Android Studio website explains that a number of bugs have been removed from this version, plus there's an updated splash screen (showing above) and branding graphics including the new logo. They're renamed a number of settings directories by removing the word "Beta" and includes a local Maven repository, which should allow users to create new projects without a stable Internet connection. These changes mean that the download is one of the largest seen with Android Studio at around 90 MB and when launching the application after the update, it should migrate and import existing projects.
Android Studio has been in steady development for eighteen months and is now approaching readiness. I imagine that for many of my readers, this is a less exciting post, but to any developers out there, do you currently use Android Studio? If you do, how has the platform improved over eighteen months or from when you started using it? Has it helped you improve and optimize applications for Android Lollipop? Please let us know in the comments below.