Free Google course to program Android apps in Kotlin

If you've always wanted to learn how to develop Android applications but don't have much programming experience, today may be your lucky day. Google recently announced a new free online programming course called Android Basics in Kotlin, with which you can obtain the necessary knowledge to start building your own applications.

In fact this is not something new, since 4 years ago Google already launched a basic nano-degree of programming in Android based on Java through the Udacity platform. We could say then that this is the renewed version of that same course but focused on Kotlin, where they teach us from installing Android Studio and other development tools, to understanding the operation of a database, to building interfaces and ultimately, to putting together our first Android apps in a simple and didactic way.

What is this Android application programming course?

It is important to highlight the terms "didactic" and "simple", since as the developer Kat Yuan indicates in the presentation note of the course, "Learning to program for the first time can be intimidating, but it can be achieved without having to count with a prior technical background. The goal is to show the student the tools and resources that professional Android developers use. Thus, we will learn the fundamentals of programming with practical examples ”.

If we focus on the contents of the course as such, it starts completely from scratch, from installing Android Studio to creating a simple application. The course will have 5 units although for now only the first unit has been released. This didactic unit has 20 activities, which can be theory explainer videos created by Google's own experts, or what is known as Codelabs. The latter are practical exercises of a limited duration in which the student can apply the theory learned in a real case. All this with a test at the end to self-assess the learning acquired.

What is Kotlin? Is this language worth learning?

Kotlin is an object-oriented programming language that runs on top of a Java virtual machine and can be compiled into JavaScript source code. Although its syntax is not compatible with Java, Kotlin is developed to be able to interact with Java code, which allows companies to migrate to this new language gradually.

The language was created in 2016, and to give us an idea, of the 1000 most popular Android applications today, 70% of them are written with Kotlin. Therefore, without a doubt we can say that it is a language with a lot of weight in the current application development market.

If we are interested in expanding our knowledge of Kotlin, Google also offers other courses on this language, such as Kotlin Bootcamp for Programmers, Android Kotlin Fundamentals and Advanced Android in Kotlin for the most experts.

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