This is a common question I had when I first started to learn Java and Android app development as a complete beginner.
I started my journey to learn how to code when my and my friends had “the next big app idea that would blow the world up!”
I came into coding thinking I would become a millionaire and left with a nice side passion I keep to this day…
…In short, the world has stayed intact and I haven’t made the next Flappy Bird, BUT I now do know Java and how to make basic Android apps…
which is exactly why I’m making this site: to help guide complete beginners looking for how to learn java and android development online like I did a while back
Anyway, let’s get back to the question at hand
How Long Will It Take Me To Make My First Android App As A Beginner?
This question can be divided into two questions with two different answers:
- “How long will it take me to make my first sh**ty Android app with the guidance of a teacher in an online coding course” (aka with guidance)
- “How long will it take me to make my first quality Android app by myself without outside assistance?” (aka 100% solo and original app)
The FIRST question is where we want to start because this is where you learn the fundamentals of development so that you can tackle your own projects with discipline and structure.
So basically when I began learning to code I went through several stages.
I first tried to learn online with miscellaneous YouTube videos…that didn’t work.
I then tried to learn Java from a textbook from my AP Computer Science teacher…that didn’t work.
I finally tried to learn online with a book I got from Barnes and Nobles…annnnnnd that didn’t work.
Finally, fully defeated I went online and Googled some structured online courses for learning Java and I found Treehouse.
I review the Team Treehouse Android and Java courses here in a thorough article, but that’s not what I want to discuss here…
…After I joined TreeHouse I had Java basics under my belt in 1-1 1/2 months.
I next tackled Android development and I made my first app under instruction within’ 3-4 weeks of learning the android development environment.
So that’s a total of about 1-2 months to get my first Android app up starting at ZERO coding knowledge.
I had never written a line of code…ever.
My first app simply changed a quote on the screen based on a button press, but that project really taught me how to use the Development Environment Android Studio.
Question 1 down, Question 2 is up next…
…After completing my first app with Team Treehouse I did some more projects with them and made about 4 more stock app projects with my own tweaks.
I finally felt like I could strike out on me own and code my own full app.
Recently Flappy Bird had come out so I decided to make an app related to it for my first independent app.
I was also fascinated by the device gyroscope so first I made a simple app the reported to me what the phone’s sensors were detecting.
This small app gave me get a better idea of how the gyroscope worked so I could use the code for my app.
I ended up calling the app “Tilt the Gaps” and it is just like Flappy Bird except you’d tilt your phone through pipes (rectangles)
Since it was my first independent project it likely took longer than it’d take for me to build it again today as I’m more experienced
I remember finishing it then realizing I had no how to market so it quickly fizzled out.
Also, I had no graphic designer so the app looked crappy…
NOTE: Coders and Graphic Designers are like two peas in a pod. Coders make sh*t work and designers make it bearable to look at. When both work well in tandem then amazing things can happen.
So yeah, it was a really basic game and it took me a month to make since the logic was actually quite difficult to get correct.
I went on to make another app I called “FramShift” where you’d tap a green area and avoid tapping the red area on the screen.
The black line in the center toggled up and down and black rectangles oscillated to confuse the player.
After that app I took a break from Android development since school got more difficult and I had to focus on my studies.
But yeah, an independent app can take anywhere from 1 week to complete to 6 months.
Depends on complexity…
…but if you are making a simple game like I started off doing about 1 month is the development time you’re looking at.
Ok…So How Can I Get Rolling and Learn Android/Java For Myself?
I know you’re really eager to stop reading and just write some code already so let me guide you on the right path.
I basically searched everywhere for the best way to learn a coding language as I said above.
I’ve tried lynda.com, udemy.com, youtube vids, and so much more.
But in my honest opinion, no place makes it easier to learn any coding language than Team Treehouse.
If you’ve ever even considered learning to code I recommend you chek out the article I linked below:
I give you a tour of the whole Treehouse course line-up so you can see exactly what you are getting…
…You get your first 7 days free with them and if you’re a student you get 50% off (that’s what I did when I first started)
I remember wanting to learn to code so bad without knowing what to do and it was a helpless feeling.
When I hopped into Treehouse I was shocked by how much content they had.
They have thousands of videos, tons of coding projects and exercises, and best of all, you can learn whatever you want since they teach all things coding.
Great place to get a start until you are at the upper side of intermediate skill level.
At that point, you can direct your own learning, but that is several years down the road…
…all you need to worry about now is the basics of Java/Android programming, then you can elevate and do harder stuff.
Treehouse is the best place to go to get that solid basis that is so crucial for beginners needing a foundation in Computer Science principles so they can branch out to any software niche they’d like.
Good luck on your journey fellow code geek…
…may the syntax be with you.
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