“Bad libraries build collections, good libraries build services, great libraries build communities.”- R. David Lankes (An American Author)
The custom mobile app development industry is flourishing and with a whopping 2.2 million iOS applications and 2.8 million android applications, it is not going to slow down at any time soon. Looking up to its coherently growing demand, the companies are coming up with numerous tools and techniques to enhance the app developer as well as the user experience.
Android libraries are also one such contribution that has brought a difference in the Application development process, making it more proficient as well as productive. Being pre-written and pre-tested, the libraries save a lot of time for the developers, empowering them to focus on the main logic of the application, rather than spending their valuable time on the modules which are already present in the libraries.
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So, if you plan to develop an android application for your business, leveraging android libraries in your development process can make a huge difference. There are numerous Android libraries on the market ranging from the user interface to the backend, to native component usage, and so forth, hence choosing the best among them can be overwhelming.
To help you with the same we have compiled a list of the best Android libraries that you can include in your app development process. By the end of this article, you will be able to identify the greatest Android libraries and what their strengths are. So, without further ado, let’s dive in-
List of Best 15 Android Libraries with Categories for 2022 –
- Dagger 2
- Holo Graph Library
- Gravity View
- Android Data Binding
1. Dagger 2
Category: Dependency Injector
The Android applications are dependent on various libraries to function properly, requiring them to instantiate the objects, resulting in the formation of a dependency chain.
Dagger 2 proves to be one of the best dependency injector libraries that analyses the dependency chain and creates code for the entire process. The library speeds up the app development process, relieving you from writing the large boilerplate code.
Dagger 2 depends on Java processors for execution and unlike other Java-based dependency injector libraries, it does not require XML parse elements or face runtime dependency issues. Dagger 2 simplifies the configuration and testing of complex dependencies in the App development process.
To simplify the process further, you can use the powerful Hilt dependency injection framework. Hilt provides a standard way to incorporate Dagger dependency injection into an Android application, facilitating the dagger-related infrastructure for the Android Apps.
Steps to use Dagger 2 in your Android Project
- Define UserRepository
- Create the UserRepository by adding an @Inject annotation to the dedicated UserRepository constructor.
- Add the dependencies to the build.gradle file.
- Use the generated Dagger code.
The process of making a network request and establishing a connection is quite a complex task, requiring you to create a URL connection, assure the compatibility of the data type of input stream, and then execute it by covering it in the AsyncTask. The main issue with this process is fetching data from the network, which becomes harder with the increase in the quantity, like in the case of APIs.
Retrofit, an android library for networking, simplifies this process, mapping the Application Programming Interface to the REST Client. The tagline of Retrofit – “ a type-safe REST client for Android and Java”, tells about the entire functionality of the library. Retrofit is an open-source Android library, which eases structured data transactions with the help of REST-based web services. It also assures the type safety of the transaction by validating it during the compilation.
Steps to use Retrofit in your Android Project
- Add Retrofit dependency file in build.gradle file.
- Add the Internet permission in the AndroidManifest.xml file to enable network transactions.
- Create POJO/Model Class to parse the JSON data
- Create a Retrofit instance.
- Define different API interfaces that can support network transactions.
- Define RestAdapter to implement the API.
- Finally, generate the data list and launch your app.
Picasso, a product of Square, is a robust and one of the most popular Android libraries that allows you to download and store images at utter ease. Images prove to be the easier and most effective way of conveying your message, making it comprehensible in the blink of an eye.
Picasso, a simple yet powerful library, is packed with a lot of amazing features, taking the image handling in Android to another level. Let’s check out the highlights of Picasso-
- Picasso empowers you to remodel the images to a smaller size or any other custom requirement, without compromising the quality.
- The Library enables you to transform complex images with minimum memory usage.
- With Picasso, you can use placeholder content on events like the occurrence of error and image download.
- It offers commendable memory management.
Steps to include Picasso in your Android project
- Create a project in Android Studio
- Include the required dependency in the app-level Gradle file
- Add InternetPermission to the AndroidManifest.xml file
- Add an ImageView to the layout of the activity_main.xml file of the application.
- In MainActivity.java, navigate to the layout and create the ImageView instance.
- You can then use Picasso to load images from the desired source.
Glide is a fast and efficient Android library that empowers you to load and cache images in the android application. Glide library, which majorly focuses on Smooth scrolling, is managed by Bumptech and recommended by Google. On Android, Glide concentrates on two key aspects of image loading performance- the decoding speed of the images and defects incurred during image decoding.
Glide library is loaded with a lot of amazing features, let’s take a look at some of its major highlights-
- Glide offers an easy to use API.
- Not only the images, but Glide also supports animated GIFs in android applications.
- With Glide, you can fetch, decode, and display video stills, images, and animated GIFs.
- The API present in the library enables the developers to get into any network stack, other than just the default one.
- It also helps in managing the video calls, i.e. loading, displaying, etc.
Steps to integrate Glide into your Android Project
- Add Glide to your dependencies in build.gradle.
- Create a layout resource for your project.
- Create the Fragment Class and load the images into ImageView through Glide.
- Adding the Fragment to the Activity through the Navigation Component
- Add Internet Permission to the Android Manifest
- Synchronize Gradle and once it is complete you can now use Glide for image loading.
CAMViews is an android library that allows the application to access the device camera and perform tasks. Including the library in the code, automatically empowers your application to capture and preview the videos and scan the barcodes, and process them instantly.
CamView can be implemented in 4 simple steps-
- Add the appropriate component to the layout.xml barcodes, after which ScannerLiveView will be ready to use the barcode scanner.
- As soon as you get the CameraLiveView or ScannerLiveView instance, you can start the desired camera.
- You must set your barcode listener in the ScannerLiveView instance that is setScannerViewEventListener(…) to recognize barcodes.
- Make sure you stop all previews and working threads when your activity ends. For this, you can use the calling stopCamera() or stopScanner() method.
CAMView simplifies the entire process, hiding all the complexities in a single component. All you need to do is to place the component in the existing View hierarchy of the application, doing this enables your application to use the camera of the device and take inputs.