What is the best IDE to develop Android apps in? [closed]

0 votes
asked Nov 11, 2009 by jamey-mcelveen

I am about to start developing an android app and need to get an IDE. Eclipse and the android eclipse plugin appears to be the natural choice. However I am familiar with intelliJ and re-sharper so I would prefer use intelliJ.

Has anyone used https://code.google.com/archive/p/idea-android/? Is this any good?

Should I just bite the bullet and learn Eclipse?

20 Answers

0 votes
answered Nov 11, 2009 by bill-the-lizard

Eclipse is not that hard to learn (I use both Eclipse and NetBeans, and I switch back and forth pretty effortlessly). If you're going to be learning Android development from the start, I can recommend Hello, Android, which I just finished. It shows you exactly how to use all the features of Eclipse that are useful for developing Android apps. There's also a brief section on getting set up to develop from the command line and from other IDEs.

0 votes
answered Nov 11, 2009 by pierre-antoine-lafay


Android Studio has officially come out of beta and been released. It is now the official IDE for Android Development - Eclipse won't be supported anymore. It is definitely the IDE of choice for Android Development. Link to download page: http://developer.android.com/sdk/index.html


As of Google I/O 2013, the Android team has moved to IntelliJ Idea with the new Android Studio IDE: http://developer.android.com/sdk/installing/studio.html

Great to see Google endorse Idea. It is safe to say that Android Studio, and thus Idea, will from now on be the definitive IDE for Android development! :D


IntelliJ now has support for Android. See Enabling Android Support from the JetBrains help page and the Google Code project page for the plugin. The Getting Started wiki page is pretty helpful.

If you are used to IntelliJ, I don't think it would be beneficial to switch IDEs just for Android tools. You can work on Android with any text editor (I use Vim). If you're more productive with a specific environment I don't see why you'd have to learn a new one. Not worth it in my opinion. Plus I'm a big IntelliJ fan. The IntelliJ plugin lets you make apk files and push the app to the emulator, that's all you need for Android app development. I'd say you're safe sticking with IntelliJ.

Update: there is now an official free IDE for IntelliJ android dev! http://blogs.jetbrains.com/idea/2010/10/intellij-idea-10-free-ide-for-android-development/

0 votes
answered Nov 23, 2009 by melinda-green

All of the full-featured Java IDE's are good and share all of the same concepts and main features. If you can find your way around one you can probably do the same for any other without much trouble.

EDIT: Google gave us a wonderful gift with the new and free AndroidStudio is very good. I highly recommend it over Eclipse.

0 votes
answered Jan 16, 2010 by p0tta

You can also develop rich UI filled Android applications using Adobe AIR. If you plan to go that route then Flex Builder Burrito is the best IDE. Take a look at this post as to how easy it is to build an AIR4Android app http://blog.air4android.com/?p=13

0 votes
answered Jan 20, 2010 by gary

An IDE which supports Android development is Processing for Android: http://wiki.processing.org/w/Android. Processing is its own language but it's easy to learn. Processing for Android requires the JDK and Android SDK to be installed but runs on its own. It runs on Linux, Mac OSX and Windows (on a side note: one can develop a desktop app in Processing and then compile it to target any of these operating systems). Its development is ongoing but it works. It's especially good for quickly sketching up an idea and running it on your Android phone (even if you plan to develop it further in another IDE).

There is an active support forum here: http://forum.processing.org/android-processing.

0 votes
answered Jan 26, 2010 by user507410

Eclipse and Netbeans are both horrible slow, and I'ts a miracle that even the serious developers has been sticking with it for years, not even try to stick with a better product.

Java as platform is a shame when it comes to non-handheld platforms (win,mac,linux) and if anyone are going to develop on the platform I say do what else but do not use Java at all. For mobility it's probably has a kind of good luck here, as the systems are more down-scaled.

As far I know, there aren't any existing IDE for Java which aren't iself written in a Java environment. This is horrible because Java is messing up the desktop environment.

I'm willing to spend hours on google to find an Java IDE/Editor which are capable for android projects but will use a native environment for itself.

0 votes
answered Nov 14, 2010 by alex

Unfortunately, there is no perfect IDE for Android. Eclipse has more features as it is the only IDE google developed plugin for. However, if you are just like me, tired of crashes and weired debug/develop mode swithes, Use Netbeans plugin from http://nbandroid.kenai.com.

0 votes
answered Nov 24, 2010 by jcollum

Of the existing IDEs, Ted Neward ranks them this way:

Best: IntelliJ IDEA

Second: Netbeans

Third: Eclipse

He seems to think that Eclipse throws up a lot of "friction"; hard to say what that means.

Edit, years later: After attempting to use Eclipse/Aptana for node development and using JetBrains products for node and ruby development I would absolutely start with IntelliJ IDEA and give that a try for the 30 day trial.

0 votes
answered Jan 11, 2011 by aleks-n

I advise Android bundle for TextMate: https://github.com/nesterow/Android.tmbundle It's lightweight and easy to use. There is no intellisense, but actually it just makes you remember namespaces better. :)

0 votes
answered Nov 14, 2011 by alex

If you do android native code development using NDK, give Visual Studio a try. (Not a typo!!!) Check out: http://ian-ni-lewis.blogspot.com/2011/01/its-like-coming-home-again.html

and: http://code.google.com/p/vs-android/

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