9 Best Android Programming Books in 2021

The Android mobile platform, originally based on a modified version of the Linux kernel, has created huge ripples in the mobile industry. After all, it is one of the most used mobile operating systems globally, with millions of phones running some version of the platform. One of the best ways to play a part in the Android ecosystem is by building an app or game of your own. The process is fairly straight forward if you’ve always had an eye for coding. However, there are several ways to learn Android coding from scratch, particularly if you’re a beginner. One of the best ways to get started on Android app development is by getting the best Android Programming Books on the matter.

ProductBrandNamePrice
O'Reilly MediaHead First Android Development: A Brain-Friendly GuideCheck Price on Amazon
Big Nerd Ranch GuidesAndroid Programming: The Big Nerd Ranch Guide (Big Nerd Ranch Guides)Check Price on Amazon
WileyAndroid App Development For DummiesCheck Price on Amazon
Android 9 Development CookbookCheck Price on Amazon
Packt PublishingAndroid Programming for BeginnersCheck Price on Amazon

* If you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. For more details, please visit our Privacy policy page.

But if you’ve ever searched Kindle or any other platform for such content, you will know that Android development books are available in the hundreds, thus making the decision somewhat confusing. This is why we’ve decided to talk about some of the best Android programming books for app development you can get right now.

We will talk about books that require no technical knowledge about coding or Java while also providing options for expert users to brush up on their skills or use it as a reference book for app projects. We recommend books that dive into game development and design for gaming enthusiasts, while some of the books we talk about will also cover those aspects.

With this in mind, let’s take a look at the top Android applications programming book available in the marketplace right now.

Best Android Programming Book in 2021

1. Head First Android Development: A Brain-Friendly Guide

If you’ve had Java programming experience but have never really dived into Android application development, this book may be meant for you. This is a visually appealing book for Android development authored by Dawn Griffiths and David Griffiths. The authors take great care in making sure the concepts are understood by the reader while getting you learning the basics of Android development in the process.

This is perhaps why the book is titled Head First Android Development: A Brain-Friendly Guide, given the ease at which difficult concepts are explained. In addition to the basic concept required by all developers, this book will also give you an excellent understanding of design interfaces while also teaching you how to create a database. As is the case with most Android development books, you will need a computer running Android Studio to make full use of core concepts and examples provided in this title.

It’s worth pointing out that this is the 1st edition variant of the Head First Android Development originally launched in 2015. Since then, the platform has come a long way, though this book remains relevant even today, thanks to the lessons it offers for any budding developer. If you’re looking for a book to begin your journey as an Android developer, this is a decent place to start. Be sure to have a closer look at this title from the link below.

Buy it Now: Amazon


2. Android Programming: The Big Nerd Ranch Guide

The Big Nerd Ranch Guide is possibly one of the most renowned Android development books and has been available for quite some time. It is authored by Bill Phillips and co-authored by Chris Stewart, Kristin Marsicano, and Brian Gardner. This book is based on Android Bootcamp by Big Nerd Ranch and can give you an excellent idea of the Android platform’s functioning, particularly from a beginner’s perspective.

As per the description of Android Programming: The Big Nerd Ranch Guide, it will teach learners how to create Android apps using Kotlin, a cross-platform programming language. Of course, learners will also need to have access to Android Studio to make it happen. Using this informative book, users can create Android 5.0 Lollipop apps through Android 8.1 Oreo and beyond.

In short, Android Programming: The Big Nerd Ranch Guide is the ultimate guide to get started on Android app development via Kotlin. We like that it is focused on teaching you the process step by step, thus making this a great place to start. Readers of the book note that it strikes a good balance between difficulty and making sure you’re interested in the topic. This is the fourth volume of the renowned Big Nerd Ranch Guides.

Buy it Now: Amazon


3. Android App Development For Dummies

This book is authored by Michael Burton and happens to be the go-to title for anybody who isn’t shy to admit that they are new to Android development. However, the author says that some Java experience is necessary before you read this book. Android App Development For Dummies lets you start your journey as an Android developer from scratch while also making sure your Java skills are challenged along the way.

Among the things you will learn with this book include creating an Android app widget and knowing when to use techniques like Fragments, Databases, and Image Downloads. What’s even better is that the book will also guide you through creating apps via Android Studio for wearables and televisions, in addition to smartphones and tablets with varying user interfaces.

If you read through the book while understanding its concepts, you should be able to publish your very own app on the Google Play Store. Users can also build and publish apps meant for Amazon Fire tablets with the lessons learned here, making this a truly worthwhile read for a new developer. This book is available in paperback as well as Kindle versions.

Buy it Now: Amazon


4. Android 9 Development Cookbook

Though Android 10 is the current iteration of Android, millions of devices continue to run on Android 9 Pie, making it one of the most popular versions of Android right now. Authored by Rick Boyer, the Android 9 Development Cookbook is designed for those who have some programming experience with Java but are new to developing Android apps.

This Android cookbook also offers “recipes” to create engaging apps using graphics, animations, and multimedia. It will also help you understand how notifications and alerts work with detailed step-by-step guides. Readers will also be provided with guidance to properly utilize the touchscreen and sensors on a smartphone or tablet, an aspect that Android developers have deep control over.

At the end of this Android cookbook, the goal is to create your own Android app from scratch and take it live on Google’s dedicated app platform. In addition to helping users create apps, this book also aims to help you solve various challenges in an Android development environment. This development cookbook is available in Kindle and paperback versions and is rated among the best books on the matter.

Buy it Now: Amazon


5. Android Programming for Beginners

This book is exactly as it sounds and aims to make it easy for people with no prior knowledge of Android development to learn the skills effectively. This book is authored by John Horton and has received some excellent reviews from fellow learners. Android Programming for Beginners focuses on teaching users the basics of Android development via Java.

While the goal here is to let you launch your own Android app on the Google Play Store, it teaches you the basic principles involved in Android development. The book’s description suggests that it will teach you the concepts of developing Android 9 (Pie) apps from scratch. There are pointers provided about storing the data of your app users with SQLite.

As most Android developers will tell you, coding for an app is not nearly the hardest part; it’s the design. With this in mind, this book will dive into the app design patterns used by top Android developers, giving you some crucial lessons on design and user interfaces in the process. The book’s author says that this book is recommended for every user who has no prior experience with Java or programming in general.

Buy it Now: Amazon


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

The title of this book makes it very clear who this book is meant for. Though it is slightly older than other books we’ve mentioned here, this is an excellent guide to get yourself acquainted with the platform’s core features. It also takes a deep dive into JVM (Java Virtual Machine) scripting while also discussing tap jacking and finally touching on production to help launch your very own featured Android app.

The Busy Coder’s Guide is rated as a programming book, which means readers are expected to know Java. There’s even a dedicated chapter on implementing NFC features (Near Field Communication), such as Google Wallet (now known as Google Pay Send). The author Mark L Murphy also covers topics like leveraging the camera, creating interactive maps in your app, or animated widgets. It’s worth pointing out that Murphy is also an active member of the developer community.

Learners will also understand concepts like integrating navigation into the app’s navigation bar or even integrate other scripting languages. Unlike most books on this list, this is only available in paperback with no Kindle variant available. This book is slightly longer than the rest at 600 plus pages. However, we highly recommend this title thanks to the broad range of Android development-related topics it covers.

Buy it Now: Amazon


7. Android Application Development All-in-One For Dummies

Though the name is eerily similar to the one we talked about above, this takes a slightly different approach. Despite being called Android Application Development All-in-One For Dummies, this title requires some programming knowledge with Kotlin or Java. However, no prior Android development experience is required as per the author Barry Burd.

It takes you through writing the code for an app from scratch, building it, and finally posting it on the app hub. You will be well acquainted with OOP and functional programming paradigms with this book, in addition to building apps for smartwatches, TVs, or even cars on Android Auto.

This is the 3rd edition of the book published in August 2020, so this book also has the honor of being among the most recent publications on this list. This handy title is available in both Kindle and paperback versions. Be sure to check it out.

Buy it Now: Amazon


8. Android Programming with Kotlin for Beginners

Also written by John Horton, this book covers learning how Android and Kotlin work together. This book will go into the Android 10 (Q) operating system while covering user interaction, data captures, animation, and much more. The author mentions that this book is meant for anybody new to Android development and the Kotlin format. It is further said that this book can be read with zero prior experience of programming.

The most interesting aspect of Android Programming with Kotlin for Beginners is that it lets you build four real-world apps from the ground up along with a wide-range of mini-apps as you go through its contents. The somewhat complicated Kotlin concepts like variables, functions, data structures, and object-oriented code are also covered towards the end of the book. As with other Android development books, you will learn to navigate Android Studio, one of the essential tools to build an app from scratch.

It’s one of the most recent books on Android application development, and it covers Android 10, which was launched less than two years ago. At the end of this book, the reader should develop, make the app work, and publish their own real-world Android apps on Google Play using Kotlin programming and other easy-to-learn principles without prior knowledge of Java. Customers can get this book in paperback and Kindle versions.

Buy it Now: Amazon


9. Mastering Android Game Development

As you’ve probably guessed already, this is a book for Android developers to hone their skills concerning game development and the aspects surrounding the launching of your very own Android game. This means you will need to be at least an intermediary level Android developer with some knowledge of coding and Java. This book covers topics like animations and particle systems, helping you provide a rich gaming experience to app users.

Further, this book will also help you leverage the Android SDK to create a responsive and reusable and responsive user interface. Diving deeper into the gaming aspect, this title lets you integrate Play Services into your games to build features like leaderboards and achievements. Users will also get accustomed to the development environment of Android Studio.

This title is highly recommended if you want to learn the intricacies of game designing and how it merges with app development. It covers almost every aspect of game development with the bonus of giving you a developer console to port the app onto smartphones and tablets. The book is authored by Raul Portales and is available in a paperback and Kindle version, respectively.

Buy it Now: Amazon


ProductBrandNamePrice
O'Reilly MediaHead First Android Development: A Brain-Friendly GuideCheck Price on Amazon
Big Nerd Ranch GuidesAndroid Programming: The Big Nerd Ranch Guide (Big Nerd Ranch Guides)Check Price on Amazon
WileyAndroid App Development For DummiesCheck Price on Amazon
Android 9 Development CookbookCheck Price on Amazon
Packt PublishingAndroid Programming for BeginnersCheck Price on Amazon

* If you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. For more details, please visit our Privacy policy page.