10 Best Books for Android App Development

If you want to jump on the Android bandwagon, books could be a great way to start. Here are the 10 best Android books on the market. We handpicked them for their content quality, readability, relevance, presentation, and all other parameters.

In 2003, American technology company Android Inc. started making an operating system, Android, for digital cameras. In 2005, when Google bought Android Inc, the software was already being tested. Designed especially for touchscreens, Android succeeded, and now three devices out of four are Android. It constitutes 75% of the smartphone market.

What is Android?

Android is a mobile operating system that has been in the market for around 15 years. It is found as the base operating system for phones and tablets. The search engine giant Google owns Android. However, since it is open-source, it is easily and freely accessible to anyone. This makes it different from other OS like Apple, macOS, and Microsoft Windows. Other operating systems like Chrome OS and Windows 11 support Android applications.

How to Learn Android App Development?

Here are the 6 key steps to learning Android Development:

1. Learn from the official Android website:

The first thing you need to do before you start learning android app development is to visit the Android developer website. It is very important to read everything about the ecosystem and various ideas and technologies linked with Android.

2. Try Kotlin

Did you know that Google supports Kotlin on Android since May 2017? To become an Android developer, you need to learn Kotlin.

Tip: Visit the official website, read the Android Development documents, and try the language online.

3. Learn Material Design

Explore Material Design. All you need to do is scroll through the entire website and find out how it is built and the idea used behind it.

4. Download Android Studio IDE

Download Android Studio. It is the best IDE developed by Google. It is very simple to use. It is considered to be the best way to learn Android app development.

5. Start Writing Code

Apart from reading about Android Development, you need to also practice. The next step in the learning process is to write codes.

Now go to the Android website and click on “Develop.” There are two most important things you need to learn:

  • Training courses and Codelabs
  • API Reference

6. Stay Updated With The Recent Trends

Learning should never end. You must ensure you stay updated with all the latest trends in Android development.

10 Best Android Books for App Development

1. Head First Android Development

Head First Android Development A Brain-Friendly Guide

Description: If you have some basic understanding of Java and want to start with Android, this book would exceed your expectations. The book uses a visually-rich format rather than a text-heavy approach to Android app development. The format makes it an interesting read, even for kids.

Head First series is suited for beginners, and this book focuses on enabling you to make your first app singlehandedly and quickly. At 932 pages, this book is a lengthy guide on how to write Android apps.

The book also provides good examples with illustrations and some excellent reference manuals. There are also some projects in the book to help readers practice their understanding of the concepts.

  • Originally Published: 2015
  • Author: Dawn Griffiths, David Griffiths

You can buy this book here.

2. Android App Development for Dummies

Android Application Development For Dummies

Description: Android App Development for Dummies is a self-explanatory title. It’s a beginner-level book that elucidates both – the basics of Android and the advanced Android topics for app development. It focuses on helping you get started with your Android app by the time you finish reading it. That’s one reason we rate it as the best android application development book out there.

Knowing the basics of Java is not mandatory, but we recommend it if you wish to make the most out of this book. The authors explain everything from downloading SDK, getting Eclipse up and running, coding applications, and even how to price your app. The book also suggests whether you should keep your app free or not. Also, the book has two sample programs for practice.

  • Originally Published: 2012
  • Author: Micahel Burton, Donn Felker

You can buy this book here.

3. GUI Design for Android Apps

GUI Design for Android Apps

Description: GUI Design for Android Apps is a concise read with just 156 pages. It includes easy-to-follow tutorials that guide you through creating an interactive user interface for your Android app. The Kindle edition of the book is available for free. So, if you want to check out the content before investing in the paperback version, you know where to look for it.

The sample code and case studies are key fixtures in the book, which makes it engaging and enriching simultaneously. Since the book contains the basics of UI Android development, you will find it perfect as a beginner.

  • Originally Published: 2014
  • Author: Tao Wang, Ryan Cohen

You can buy this book here.

4. Android Programming: The Big Nerd Ranch Guide

Android Programming The Big Nerd Ranch Guide

Description: Another beginner-friendly read makes it to the list of top app development books, especially for readers with an elementary knowledge of Kotlin. The book stands out in how it deploys Android Studio for app creation. Developed with other apps, these apps can download images from the Internet and perform other tasks.

The book is compatible with Android 5.0 through Android 8.0 and beyond. Well organized, it makes the learning process for a newbie systematic. There are seven example programs provided in the book. Successive programs are built on the previous example, so there’s a continuity to learning. No wonder many call it the best Android studio book.

  • Originally Published: 2012
  • Author: Bill Phillips, Chris Stewart, Kristin Marsicano, Brian Gardner

You can buy this book here.

5. Android Design Patterns: Interaction Design Solutions for Developers

Android Design Patterns Interaction Design Solutions for Developers

Description: This book by Greg Nudelman walks you through user interface development with sample patterns. The book provides over 75 sample patterns that you can use to create the user interface. Thus, you can end up saving significant time and effort.

The book details the to-dos for an interactive UX design and tells us what to avoid. The author employs an interactive way to teach the patterns with ample examples included. Also, step-by-step illustrations are provided for the patterns, alongside specific patterns for tablets. You can call it the best book for Android development for this very reason. Just feel free to use a companion website to discuss the book with fellow readers.

  • Originally Published: 2013
  • Author: Greg Nudelman

You can buy this book here.

6. Android Programming: Pushing the Limits

Android Programming Pushing the Limits

Description: The android development book makes sense for readers who already know how to write Android apps as it is all about building the next-level Android apps that can help you test the limits of the Android OS.

Although the book is well over 400 pages, the writing style of Erik Hellman makes it a fun read. You can always expect plenty of proven tips on Android programming to beef up your knowledge. There’s nothing much for starters in the book. If you are one, you can consider going through an elementary book first that guides you through creating your first few simple apps on Android.

  • Originally Published: 2013
  • Author: Erik Hellman

You can buy this book here.

7. Android Application Development: All-in-one for Dummies

Android Application Development All-in-One For Dummies

Description: This is one of the best android development books. It is a comprehensive guide on Android and one of the top Android books ever. In the initial part, the book discusses the basics of Android, including functional programming techniques. As you dig deeper, it illustrates the nitty-gritty of working in Studio, testing the app before its release, and more.

If you have read Programming Java for Dummies by Bary Burd, you would be familiar with the author’s writing style. It is well-structured, a feat in itself for an 800-page book. It’s interactive, sharp, and easy to follow. All the programming examples are downloadable from the website. The latest edition, released in 2020, covers some of the newest Android features.

  • Originally Published: 2015
  • Author: Barry A. Burd, John Paul Mueller

You can buy this book here.

8. The Busy Coder’s Guide to Advanced Android Development

Busy Coder's Guide to Android Development

Description: It’s a handy guide for anyone wanting to learn how to develop for Android. The book starts from the fundamentals of Android and gradually moves on to advanced topics. The latest edition of the book contains Android 9.0 and Android Studio 3.0, making it one of the coveted Android books.

The book details how to make an app from scratch and the later stages of app building. Creating a simple user interface, GUI Widgets, and APIs are just some topics discussed. Despite the variety in topics, Mark doesn’t go into much detail about them, thus making the book ideal for beginners.

  • Originally Published: 2009
  • Author: Mark Murphy

You can buy this book here.

9. Android Cookbook: Problems and Solutions for Android Developers

Android Cookbook, 2e Problems and Solutions for Android Developers

Description: This book is a simple approach to Android app development. The author focuses on getting your best Android app ready right from the first page. The book has hardly any fluff, and the presentation style is decent.

The book is focused on building Android app development through the use of Java. Naturally, anyone with a basic knowledge of Java would be able to extract more from this book. It features 700 pages, 200 previewed on the Internet for free. So, you can get the hang of the writing style and the contents before you buy this book.

  • Originally Published: 2017
  • Author: Ian Darwin

You can buy this book here.

10. Android 9 Development Cookbook

Android 9 Development Cookbook Over 100 recipes and solutions to solve the most common problems faced by Android developers, 3rd Edition

Description: Android 9 Development Cookbook is a beginner’s delight. It comes with over 100 recipes to solve the most common issues faced by an Android developer while also discussing the latest features of Android 9.0

The programming examples are more like a step-by-step guide that helps cement the facts. Working with User Interface, multi-touch gestures, location awareness, web services, and even mobile features like cameras are discussed in detail. The first two programming recipes are available on the Internet for free. If you’re on the fence about buying the book, you can try them out.

  • Originally Published: 2018
  • Author: Rick Boyer

You can buy this book here.


Knowing the basics of Java before you get started on Android can fast-track your learning process. If you think you have an excellent idea for an Android app and know Android is the only limiting factor, get equipped with these best app development books. They will help you get started.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is Android Development?

It refers to developing applications that run on the Android operating system. The Android applications can be written in Kotlin, Java, and C++.

2. What does an Android developer do?

The main aim of an Android developer is to design software and applications that are compatible with Android devices and Google Play Store.

3. What language is android apps written in?

The most important and official language for Android development is Java. You can also use C and C++ applications using the Android Native Development Kit. However, you need to know that, Google does not support the same.

4. How to make an Android App?

Here is a guide on how to make an android app for beginners:

Step 1: Install Android Studio
Step 2: create your first project
Step 3: Explore the layout editor
Step 4: Add color resources
Step 5: Add views and constraints
Step 6: Update the appearance of the buttons and the TextView
Step 7: Make your application interactive
Step 8: Implement the second fragment

You can find the complete guide here.

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