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More than 10 Effective Memory Management Ways in Android

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RAM (Random-access memory) is a crucial resource in the mobile application development environment, but it is even more crucial on a mobile operating system where physical memory is often constrained.

To maintain a functional multi-tasking app development environment, Android sets tough limits on the heap size for each mobile application. The exact heap size limit varies among devices based on how much random access memory the device has available overall. If your mobile app has reached the heaped capacity and tries to allocate more memory, it’ll receive an “OutOfMemory” error.

You can call getMemoryClass() to get an estimate of your mobile app’s available heap in megabytes. In very special situations, you can request a larger heap size by setting the large Heap attribute to “true” in the manifest <application> tag.

Stay Informed With latest News – Top Mobile App Trends in 2019

Never request a large heap simply because you have run out of memory and you need a quick fix— you should use it only when you know exactly where all your memory is being allocated and why it must be retained

android memory management


How Your Mobile Application Should Manage Memory?

You should consider RAM constraints throughout all phases of Android application development, including during app design (before you begin development). There are many ways you can design and write code that leads to more efficient results.

You can apply the below-mentioned techniques while designing and implementing your mobile application to make it more memory efficient.

1. If your app needs a service to perform work in the background, do not keep it running unless it’s actively performing a job. Also, be careful to never leak your service by failing to stop it when its work is done. The best way to limit the lifespan of your service is to use an IntentService, which finishes itself as soon as it’s done handling the intent that started it. Leaving a service running when it is not needed is one of the worst memory-management mistakes an Android application can make. So don’t be greedy by keeping service for your app running.

2. When the user navigates to a different app and your UI is no longer visible, you should release any resources that are used by only your UI. Releasing UI resources at this time can significantly increase the system’s capacity for cached processes, which has a direct impact on the quality of the user experience. To be notified when the user exits your UI, implement the onTrimMemory() callback in your Activity classes. You should use this method to listen for the TRIM_MEMORY_UI_HIDDEN level, which indicates your UI is now hidden from view and you should free resources that only your UI uses.


Android App Development


3. Avoid wasting memory with bitmaps. When you load a bitmap, keep it in RAM only at the resolution you need for the current device’s screen, scaling it down if the original bitmap is a higher resolution. Keep in mind that an increase in bitmap resolution results in a corresponding (increase2) in memory needed, because of both the X & Y dimensions increase.

4. Be aware of memory overhead.

  • Enums often require more than twice as much memory as static constants. You should strictly avoid using enums on Android.
  • Every class in Java (including anonymous inner classes) uses about 500 bytes of code.
  • Every class instance has 12-16 bytes of RAM overhead.
  • Putting a single entry into a HashMap requires the allocation of an additional entry object that takes 32 bytes

5. Be careful about using external libraries. External library code is often not written for mobile environments and can be inefficient when used for work on a mobile client. At the very least, when you decide to use an external library, you should assume you are taking on a significant porting and maintenance burden to optimize the library for mobile. Plan for that work up-front and analyze the library in terms of code size and RAM footprint before deciding to use it at all.

6. Use ProGuard to strip out any unneeded code. The ProGuard tool shrinks optimize and obfuscates your code by removing unused code and renaming classes, fields, and methods with semantically obscure names.

7. Avoid Creating Unnecessary Objects

  • Object creation is never free. Allocating memory is always more expensive than not allocating memory.
  • If you have a method returning a string, and you know that its result will always be appended to a StringBuffer anyway, change your signature and implementation so that the function does the append directly, instead of creating a short-lived temporary object.
  • When extracting strings from a set of input data, try to return a substring of the original data, instead of creating a copy.
  • An array of ints is much better than an array of Integer objects.

8. Prefer Static Over Virtual

If you don’t need to access an object’s fields, make your method static. Invocations will be about 15%-20% faster. It’s also a good practice because you can tell from the method signature that calling the method can’t alter the object’s state.

Do You Feel Difficulty in Managing Memory Effectively? You Need an Expert Android Development Company 


How to Improve Layout Performance?

Layouts are a key part of Android applications that directly affect the user experience. If implemented poorly, your layout can lead to a memory hungry application with slow UIs. For example, using nested instances of Linear Layout can lead to an excessively deep view hierarchy.

1. Re-using Layouts with <include/>

Reusing layouts is particularly powerful as it allows you to create reusable complex layouts.

2. Loading Views On Demand

Sometimes your layout might require complex views that are rarely used. Whether they are item details, progress indicators, or undo messages, you can reduce memory usage and speed up rendering by loading the views only when they are needed.


mobile app development


Memory Monitor in Android Studio

Use Android Studio to view your app’s memory use:

  • Start your app on a connected device or emulator.
  • Open the Android run-time window, and view the free and allocated memory in the Memory Monitor.
  • Click the Dump Java Heap icon () in the Memory Monitor toolbar.
  • Android Studio creates the heap snapshot file with the filename Snapshot-yyyy.mm.dd-hh.mm.ss.hprof in the Captures tab.
  • Double-click the heap snapshot file to open the HPROF viewer.
  • Note: To convert a heap dump to standard HPROF format in Android Studio, right-click a heap snapshot in the Captures view and select Export to standard .hprof.
  • Interact with your app and click the () icon to cause heap allocation.
  • Identify which actions in your app are likely causing too much allocation and determine where in your app you should try to reduce allocations and release resources.

Device Monitor

  • Open the Device Monitor.
  • From your <sdk>/tools/ directory, launch the monitor tool.
  • In the Debug Monitor window, select your app’s process from the list on the left.
  • Click Update Heap above the process list.
  • In the right-side panel, select the Help tab.

The Heap view shows some basic stats about your heap memory usage, updated after every GC. To see the first update, click the Cause GC button.

Figure: The Device Monitor tool, showing the [1] Update Heap and [2] Cause GC buttons. The Heap tab on the right shows the heap results.

Continue interacting with your app to watch your heap allocation update with each garbage collection. This can help you identify which actions in your app are likely causing too much allocation and where you should try to reduce allocations and release resources.


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Tracking Allocations

As you start narrowing down memory issues, you should also use the Allocation Tracker to get a better understanding of where your memory-hogging objects are allocated. The Allocation Tracker can be useful not only for looking at specific uses of memory, but also to analyze critical code paths in an app such as scrolling.

For example, tracking allocations when flinging a list in your app allows you to see all the allocations that need to be done for that behaviour, what thread they are on, and where they came from. This is extremely valuable for tightening up these paths to reduce the work they need and improve the overall smoothness of the UI.

To use the Allocation Tracker, open the Memory Monitor in Android Studio and click the Allocation Tracker icon. You can also track allocations in the Android Device Monitor:

Android Studio

To use the Allocation Tracker in Android Studio:

  • Start your app on a connected device or emulator
  • Open the Android run-time window, and view the free and allocated memory in the Memory Monitor.
  • Click the Allocation Tracker icon () in the Memory Monitor toolbar to start and stop memory allocations.
  • Android Studio creates the allocation file with the filename Allocations-yyyy.mm.dd-hh.mm.ss.alloc in the Captures tab.
  • Double-click the allocation file to open the Allocation viewer.
  • Identify which actions in your app are likely causing too much allocation and determine where in your app you should try to reduce allocations and release resources.

Device Monitor

  • Open the Device Monitor.
  • From your <sdk>/tools/ directory, launch the monitor tool.
  • In the DDMS window, select your app’s process in the left-side panel.
  • In the right-side panel, select the Allocation Tracker tab.
  • Click Start Tracking.
  • Interact with your app to execute the code paths you want to analyze.
  • Click Get Allocations every time you want to update the list of allocations.

The list shows all recent allocations, currently limited by a 512-entry ring buffer. Click on a line to see the stack trace that led to the allocation. The trace shows you not only what type of object was allocated, but also in which thread, in which class, in which file and at which line.

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Figure: The Device Monitor tool, showing recent app allocations and stack traces in the Allocation Tracker.

Note: You will always see some allocations from DdmVmInternal and elsewhere that come from the allocation tracker itself.

Although it’s not necessary (nor possible) to remove all allocations from your performance critical code paths, the allocation tracker can help you identify important issues in your code. For instance, some apps might create a new Paint object on every draw. Moving that object into a global member is a simple fix that helps improve performance.

Capturing a Heap Dump

A heap dump is a snapshot of all the objects in your app’s heap, stored in a binary format called HPROF. Your app’s heap dump provides information about the overall state of your app’s heap so you can track down problems you might have identified while viewing heap updates.

To retrieve your heap dump from within Android Studio, use the Memory Monitor and HPROF viewer.

You can also still perform these procedures in the Android monitor:

  • Open the Device Monitor.
  • From your <sdk>/tools/ directory, launch the monitor tool.
  • In the DDMS window, select your app’s process in the left-side panel.
  • Click Dump HPROF file, shown in figure 3.
  • In the window that appears, name your HPROF file, select the save location, then click Save.

Memory_management_in_android.doc Google Docs

Figure 3. The Device Monitor tool, showing the [1] Dump HPROF file button.

If you need to be more precise about when the dump is created, you can also create a heap dump at the critical point in your app code by calling dumpHprofData().

The heap dump is provided in a format that’s similar to, but not identical to one from the Java HPROF tool. The major difference in an Android heap dump is due to the fact that there are a large number of allocations in the Zygote process. But because the Zygote allocations are shared across all app processes, they don’t matter very much to your own heap analysis.

To analyze your heap dump, you can use Memory Monitor in Android Studio. You can also use a standard tool like that. However, first, you’ll need to convert the HPROF file from Android’s format to the J2SE HPROF format. You can do this using the hprof-conv tool provided in the <sdk>/platform-tools/ directory. Simply run the hprof-conv command with two arguments: the original HPROF file and the location to write the converted HPROF file. For example:

hprof-conv heap-original.hprof heap-converted.hprof

You can now load the converted file into a heap analysis tool that understands the J2SE HPROF format.

When analyzing your heap, you should look for memory leaks caused by:

  • Long-lived references to an Activity, Context, View, Drawable, and other objects that may hold a reference to the container Activity or Context.
  • Non-static inner classes (such as a Runnable, which can hold the Activity instance).
  • Caches that hold objects longer than necessary. 

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Best Steps To Hiring A Perfect Mobile App Development Company

In this digital age, taking in to consideration the huge variations in prices from one web development company to the next, web development and mobile application development is a highly convoluted area.

There are thousands of budding new mobile app development companies joining the market everyday and a lot of them are inexperienced or have jumped on the bandwagon to make a quick buck.

When developing your website or application, it is quite common for you to never actually meet the person who is developing it. Therefore it is very important that you know what to look out for, can recognize potential ‘red flags’ and how to separate the genuinely professional application and web development companies from those who are unlikely to deliver on your request.

Also Read : Why Enterprises Invest High on Mobile App Development?

Here are a few tips on how to find out if the mobile application company will:

  • Successfully deliver on your website development or application development project.

  • Meet your deadlines effectively.

  • Ensure that your website or application is error free and working correctly.

  • Follow logical project management steps to ensure the website or application is built correctly.

  • Initial contact with the web/mobile application development company

Mobile Application Development

When dealing with the web development / mobile apps company for the first time, here are the main things that should be covered, both from the customer’s standpoint and the developer’s:

  • The mobile application / web development company should always offer to contact you either by phone or via email to discuss your plans for the project at no cost to you.

  • The web development company should always conduct a preliminary ‘discovery’ meeting, where they will go through the overall plans for the project, application or website functionality, timescales, general website or app design and they should also offer up clear and concise advice and recommendations with the minimum of technical jargon. This should also be at no cost to you.

  • When speaking to the mobile application development company, the customer should always find out:

    • How long the company has been in business, where the company is based and if the company is registered in the country they are in.

    • What work they’ve done in the past (such as websites they have online and applications they have on app stores. If the company has their link at the bottom of the websites or applications they’ve developed, that is a strong sign of their authenticity).

    • If they have any references or received any recommendations that they can show you. Ask if there is a previous client you can speak to before making a payment.

    • The project payment structure. This will vary from company to company. It is common to make up front payments in the industry – however it should be clearly defined, in the form of a contract, as to what will be done upon each payment. The customer should NEVER pay for the full project up front. The full payment should be split in to manageable payments. If you are in any doubt as to whether the company is above board, do NOT make a payment. Remember that the development company is there to work for you and should be willing to make certain concessions and work hard to get your business.

    • What the overall plan of the project is. The website or application development company should be able to give you a clear understanding of what the project will entail. For example, they should specify the technological platform they plan on using for the website or application, they should give clear information as to what the website or application will look like and the different types of functionality available (more on this later).

    • Who you will be dealing with on the project. It is very common in the industry, to deal with a project manager, therefore that person should be knowledgeable and capable.

    • What the projected timescale is. It is normally safer to ask how long it will take (approximately) in working days.

    • Use your gut instinct to determine if the person you are speaking to is honest, forthright and doesn’t evade questions.

    • You should always expect a strong customer service ethic and the guarantee of a high quality product.

Also read: 4 Little Changes That’ll Make a Big Difference With Your Mobile App Development

At the start of the mobile application or website application project

Before paying for your project to start, you should always receive an overview of the project plan, a proposal and terms and conditions in writing. This will give you a strong idea of how your project will be managed.

Proposal

This will contain an explanation of everything that the customer needs to be done. This is ordinarily what is detailed in the management report.

It should also contain:

  • The terms and conditions (how long you have to get coding errors fixed, how many changes you can make to the system before you need to start paying for them etc.)

  • An overview of the project plan.

  • The amount of working days the project will take to complete (approximately).

  • Any discounts that may be offered (and the terms and conditions of those discounts).

  • The full price split in to manageable payments.

The project itself

Project management varies a great deal depending on the size of the project, however nearly all information technology projects will require the following phases to be carried out:

Must Read : iPhone App Development Trends in 2016

Application or website documentation (where necessary)

This normally contains:

Every page title that will be included in the website or mobile application and a brief description of the page.

The functionality the website or mobile application will contain. It is very important this is explained in full as there are numerous functions and styles that can be included in the application or website, and they generally affect the price. A few of these are:

  • Screen sizing

  • An events calendar

  • A rotating image banner

  • An e-commerce section

  • An advertising banner

  • A sign in section

  • A permissions section

  • A contact form

  • A donations section

  • Social media linking

Upon payment of the first instalment, your project gets underway.

iOS Mobile App Development

There are a few key phases that all website and application development projects will always contain. These are the main steps, in order:

Wire frames

Wire frames are normally an outlined ‘sketch’ of what each page; of the website or application, will look like. This is ordinarily done using certain software – and can also be done using Photoshop. They give the customer the opportunity to move things around on the screen and make changes to screens where necessary, and to get an overall idea of what the screen will look like upon completion.

This is the main area for the customer to discuss and make changes.

Website / Mobile Application Design

This is the design of the screen once all the colours and the company logo has been added. This should be exactly what the site or application should like on the screen or device, when it is officially ‘live’ (on the web or on a mobile device).

Website / Mobile Application Development

This is the website or application coding that ensures the site/application functionality works correctly.

Error testing and fixing

All information technology projects should be thoroughly tested to make sure they work correctly. They should be tested on all the main browsers (Chrome, Safari, Explorer, Firefox) and the functionality should be checked, to ensure that you can, for example, add an event to the events calendar and it saves correctly or log in to the site and add your details or add permissions to a certain document so that only designated users can see it, etc.

The company should offer a period of at least 30 days for the customer to use the site and to fix any coding errors found.

For more information on how ACT Mobile Solutions works, please visit our Mobile Applications page.

Wrapping Up:

Here is a complete checklist that help you to determine the best mobile apps developers/website developer for your needs:

  • Always have a lengthy ‘discovery’/introductory meeting with the developer.

  • Never pay for anything until you feel completely comfortable that they are ‘on the level’.

  • Ask general questions about the company, including what they have developed in the past (do they have links at the bottom of the site or application?). Do they have references you can speak to/email?

  • Determine whether you were getting straight, honest answers.

  • What project steps will they take for your project (Report, Wireframes, Design, Development, Error testing etc.)?

  • Have they provided you with a contract, a project plan, a proposal and terms and conditions?

  • What’s the general timescale for the completion of each phase and the project in its entirety?

  • Does the cost seem reasonable for the work that is to be done and the professionalism, size, location of the organization?

*Please note: Information Technology/development costs vary significantly from company to company, the country they are in, overheads and size of company. You will most likely be quoted very low and very high prices, depending on who you talk to. If you look for:

  • Professionalism

  • Honesty

  • Customer service and a product guarantee

  • Initial work carried out without the expectation of payment

  • Knowledgeable staff

  • in the individuals you speak to, that should be enough to determine the company is legitimate.

For clear, honest advice delivering excellence in the mobile application and website design and development industries, don’t hesitate to contact PixelCrayons.

Successful Steps To Launch Mobile App In 2016

Around 700 mobile apps are launched every day. Some of these apps go on to become giants while others die a stagnant death. According to a research in 2014, a general person spends 86% of his smart-phone use time operating apps. People are moving from Internet browsers to clear cut purpose apps to access information and entertainment options.

Launching an mobile application may sound the perfect way to becoming rich. But just putting your app in a store does not bring success. You need to carry out a strategic pre-launch program to guarantee maximum download of your app. This involves running publicity campaigns and taking steps that bring your app into the limelight.

Mobile Marketing Stats

Many entrepreneurs hire an end-to-end mobile app development company to carry out the task. But, we will guide you through 10 critical steps that you can perform yourself for a successful launch of your mobile app.

 

1. Make a landing page for your mobile app

Many websites place a banner on their website which redirects a user to the app version. You should create a dedicated website where you can list out all the features of your app without the restriction of word limits. You can post guides and tutorials regarding your app which first-time down-loaders may find useful. You should combine this with social media marketing which is discussed in the next step.

2. Use Power of Social Media Marketing

You can use the power of social media to generate actively interest in your mobile app. A Facebook page can be used to publish on process development of the mobile app and generate feedback from future users. A Twitter account is also a great way to announce developments. You can link the Twitter bio to the app store once it is launched to generate downloads. Social media sites like Pinterest can be a great place to get suggestions on your app from fellow developers.

Also Read : The Importance Of Mobile App Marketing

3. Concentrate on Creating Search Engine Optimized Content

Along with your website and social media strategies, you should concentrate on creating SEO optimized content on your app. This can be in the form of blog posts, articles, press releases, website and email marketing copies. You can keep it ready and make it available on the day of the launch.

4. Make an Elaborative Demo Video

Audiovisual is the most expressive and effective method to showcase your app’s interface and functionalities. You can use simple user-friendly programs to capture screenshots and record voiceover. Make a video that details how your app works along with its features. The success of your app will depend on your communication in the video. Be sure to point out its USP defining the value of your app.

5. Pitch your mobile App on different Forums

Send links to free downloads of your app to techies, developers, bloggers and tech journalists. Keep the demo video handy and prepare yourself to face their questions. Do this in advance so that they get adequate time to test the app and write about it.

6. Pair up with other mobile app Developers

You can network with a successful App development company to market your app. They can feature your app in their own product to Increased install rates. You can set up a mutually advantageous marketing strategy by pairing up with similar apps with good ratings.

How To Choose The Best Mobile App Development Company

Mobile app development for your brand is an important and pricey affair. If you don’t have manpower to develop an app yourself, then it is sometime daunting knowing how to approach a mobile app developer. This is especially true if you don’t have enough knowledge of app development cycle. However, if you have a precise idea of what you want in the app, then it should not be a big problem for you. Here’s an elaborated guide to finding the right mobile android app development company or developer and getting a great mobile app made for your business.

1. Company can Develop Apps in all Operating Systems
Now, mobile apps are widely used across various platforms like Android, iOS, Windows, etc. If you want to have a greater reach to your potential customers, you should ensure that the developed app is compatible with all major platforms. An ideal app development company should have the ability and knowledge to make the mobile app efficiently work on all platforms.

Also Read :  Common Mobile App Development Mistakes To Avoid

2. Carefully Check Client References and Samples
While choosing a mobile apps company, you should ask for references and samples. In this way, you will get an idea whether the developer can provide you solution as per your specific requirements. A good app development company can easily provide you samples and references. You can also contact the references to know the pros and cons of service. By watching the previous works of your app developer, you can easily judge their credibility and technical depth.

 

Mobile App Development

3. Company can Customize Apps for Your Business

Before choosing an app development company, make sure that it provides you with personalized mobile apps according to your company’s business requirements. Make sure your mobile app has great performance and visual appeal. It is important to have a good design for your app; therefore, make sure that the User Experience and User Interface designs of your mobile applications are up to the mark.

4. Ask Company for innovation, quality and features in App
As there are many app development companies in India, opting for an iPhone or Android app development company with experienced developers can be a tough task. But, before choosing the company you should inquire about the details like how many quality apps they’ve developed, how innovative they are, and what are the special features that your app will carry.
In addition, you can also ask about the published apps links in the app stores. It is really not good if a developer has developed 100+ apps and none of them is published in the mobile app stores. Hiring such app development company can completely ruin your business and you may face monetary loss because app development is a costly procedure.
App Development
5. Ensure Long Term Association with Company
App development is not a one time task. A mobile app need regular updates in order to keep pace with the changing market trends and company requirements. Therefore, make sure to select a company with whom you can ensure close professional rapport for many years to come.