Android libraries play an important role in speeding up the Android app development process. They contain everything that Android app developers need to build a full-fledged app.
Whether it is source code, resource files, configuration data, message templates, and more, Android libraries offer all facilities and supporting resources for developing Android apps.
However, there are plenty of Android libraries available for developers. And often, app creators and developers are not aware of these libraries which could help them in improving their development process.
Using these libraries can not only enhance overall speed but also help you create high-quality solutions while reducing costs. So, to help you with this, here we have shared the top 10 Android libraries for Android app development that every developer can use.
What is an Android Library?
An Android library is a collection of pre-built code and ready-to-deploy resources for building Android apps. Android libraries offer a reusable set of code and supporting tools that simplify common tasks. It empowers developers with additional development facilities to create applications without writing code from scratch. By using Android libraries, Android developers can add or integrate custom functionality or features to their Android applications.
Role of Android Libraries in Android App Development
Android libraries play a crucial role in Android application development. By using libraries developers can avoid repetitive tasks and build customized functionalities and features for apps. It is because Android libraries come with in-built solutions and pre-written code templates. As a result, this reduces the need for writing code from the beginning.
Developers only have to choose the template or code from libraries. Then deploy it as per their specific requirements. As a result, it reduces time and effort. And ultimately decreases the cost of Android app development. So, Android libraries work in development in several ways.
- Code reusability
- Rapid development
- Reduced complexity
- Improved app performance
- Maintainability and updates
- Access to Advanced features
- Cross-platform development
- Additional support
- Third-party integration
Top 10 Android Libraries in 2023 for Android App Developers
Android libraries offer plenty of features and supporting tools to help developers build apps quickly and efficiently. Developers can utilize Android libraries for various purposes. For instance, UI components, network communication, data interaction, image processing, and so on. Thus, depending on the use cases, there are multiple Android libraries.
As new Android app development trends are emerging, these libraries help in different ways to build the best solutions. Below we have listed the most commonly used libraries which are popular in the industry. These libraries are used by top Android app development companies. And also across the entire global Android developer community.
Image-loading libraries assist in reducing image size. It allows developers to decrease the hassle of loading and caching images together at minimum memory usage.
Glide is an image-loading library for Android. It allows fast and seamless image loading by executing smart automatic down-sampling. Glide focuses on smooth scrolling and tries to minimize storage overhead and decode times. Thus, this library helps in reducing time and increasing image loading speed in apps. Glide is used by top Android app developers due to its fast and smooth usability.
Picasso is also one of the top Android libraries for Android app developers. It also provides facility and support for image loading and processing in Android applications. Picasso simplifies the process of image displaying from external locations.
It assists in automatic caching to disk, transforming complex ideas, download cancellation in the adapter, and ImageView recycling. Picasso handles each phase of the image loading and caching process as Glides does.
3. Dependency Injection
Dependency injection is a development concept where an object isn’t required to configure its dependencies. Rather, it passes by another object. Hence, this principle allows decoupling classes in coding from their implementation and helps in writing code faster.
4. Dagger 2
It is a completely static and compile-time dependency injection framework for Android. This is the updated version of Dagger. This library contains Android-specific helpers. It basically enables the auto-generation of subcomponents while utilizing a new code generator.
It means this library gives smaller parts to different models and maintains these parts together. Therefore, Dagger 2 is highly used in the case of developing large-size Android apps. It helps developers save significant time by making dependency graphs when compiling and utilizing the annotation process.
Every mobile app requires some kind of networking communication to execute functions. Android libraries here support optimizing the networking process in Android applications.
It is one of the widely-used Android libraries. Retrofit is a type-safe HTTP client for Android, java, and Kotlin. It allows Android app developers to smoothly add a request body, manipulate headers, choose request methods, and add query parameters. Retrofit also supports Jackson, XML, and other kinds of data structures. Developers widely prefer this library for establishing networking communication in Android apps due to its fast speed and clear code syntax.
Reactive programming is a paradigm or process where data is transmitted from one component to another component. It assists in managing asynchronous tasks efficiently.
For executing reactive programming, RxJava is the most preferred Android library. It allows developers to perform reactive programming and build reactive applications. At present, RxJava2 is the updated version available for developers. This library offers important features such as Observables, Observers, and Schedulers.
Hence, these features help in implementing reactive programming smoothly. Along with this, RxAndroid is also available as an extension of RxJava2. RxAndroid provides in-built functionalities similar to the Android platform.
View binding libraries are used for reducing the boilerplate code. Developers use these libraries while assigning views to variables and having access to them in the activity class.
Butterknife is a famous view library that assists developers assign ids to views smoothly. It uses an annotation-based library for making boilerplate code for Android applications. Butterknife is a highly useful Android app development library.
It is because this library enables developers to make bindable and drawable-based stings to their views and other data sources. As a result, this process helps in writing code much easier and saves time and effort. Butterknife also eliminates the need for using onClick and onTouch.
UI component library is also known as UI framework or UI toolkit. It is a collection of in-built and reusable graphical elements, widgets, and ready-to-deploy components. These features help in developing user interfaces for mobile applications. UI libraries streamline the process of designing and the client-side part of Android app development. These libraries contain a variety of components like buttons, checkboxes, sliders, grids, text fields, and more.
8. Jetpack Compose
It is the most famous and widely-used UI toolkit for Android built by Google itself. Jetpack Compose is a part of the larger Android Jetpack suite of libraries under Android Studio. It aims to streamline and speed up the Android application development process. Unlike the traditional Android UI development approach, JetPack follows the declarative programming method.
It means developers only need to specify what the user interface should look like as per the current state. This library offers plenty of features that include declarative syntax, state management, Reactive UI, Material Design Integration, and more.
Debugging libraries offer a set of tools to identify and fix issues or bugs in the code. It is an indispensable part of the mobile app development process. Developers highly rely on debugging libraries to resolve unexpected or hidden errors in their Android applications.
Stetho is a well-known Android library for Android built by Meta. This is an open-source tool. It allows developers to inspect and debug their Android apps directly from the Chrome Developer Tools. Setho enables developers to get access to data on layout hierarchy overview, data overview, outbound traffic, etc.
It works as a systematic bridge for developers to create flawless and bug-free Android apps. Hence, Setho offers an intuitive debugging experience to developers. This library comes with various debugging capabilities like network inspection, database inspection, shared preferences viewer, etc. Thus, it empowers developers with advanced debugging features.
Database helpers support enabling offline data usability in Android applications. These libraries help in enhancing user experience by providing offline accessibility to apps.
Room is the most commonly used persistence library. It is a part of Android Architecture Components. This library provides local data persistence at reduced boilerplate code. It is popular for its capability to build offline apps. Besides this, Room allows SQLite to handle data in Android apps. It offers an abstraction layer over SQLite.
Consequently, it makes it easier to work with databases in Android apps. Room has plenty of beneficial features such as rejecting database queries on the main thread and verifying SQL queries at compile time.
How to Choose The Right Android Library?
As you have seen, various Android libraries are on the list. Now, the next step would be to choose the right Android library for your Android app development project. Since there are numerous libraries and tools available for creating Android apps. It truly becomes challenging to select the right one as per your specific project requirements. Therefore, while selecting libraries, you should keep the following factors into consideration-
- Open source
- Core features
- Developer Community
- Library recommendations
- Owner’s reliability
Android libraries are essential tools & resources for building quality and feature-rich Android apps. They empower developers with additional capability to create custom features and improve overall development speed. As a result, these libraries help both developers as well as app owners by offering fast and cost-efficient Android app development.
However, every library comes with its own unique features and tools. Therefore, to make the best use of Android libraries, you should hire Android app developers who hold specialized or qualified skills in utilizing the required libraries for your Android app.
Q.1. Which libraries are used in Android Studio?
There are many libraries that are used in Android Studio such as Retrofit, Room, Glide, AndroidX, Jetpack Compose, and more.
Q.2. What is the best Android library for HTTP requests?
Retrofit is the most reliable Android library for integrating HTTP-based API services in your Android apps. This library comes under the Android app development services of most companies.
Q.3. Is the Android SDK a library?
Android SDK is much broader than the library. Android SDK contains everything that a developer needs to build the app. It would include libraries, APIs, documentation, utilities, etc. As the library offers only a specific feature.