Android Studio is the official Integrated Development Environment (IDE) for Android app development. Based on the powerful code editor and developer tools from IntelliJ IDEA , Android Studio offers even more features that enhance your productivity when building Android apps, such as:
- A flexible Gradle-based build system
- A fast and feature-rich emulator
- A unified environment where you can develop for all Android devices
- Live Edit to update composables in emulators and physical devices in real time
- Code templates and GitHub integration to help you build common app features and import sample code
- Extensive testing tools and frameworks
- Lint tools to catch performance, usability, version compatibility, and other problems
- C++ and NDK support
- Built-in support for Google Cloud Platform, making it easy to integrate Google Cloud Messaging and App Engine
This page provides an introduction to basic Android Studio features. For a summary of the latest changes, see the Android Studio release notes.
Each project in Android Studio contains one or more modules with source code files and resource files. The types of modules include:
- Android app modules
- Library modules
- Google App Engine modules
By default, Android Studio displays your project files in the Android project view, as shown in figure 1. This view is organized by modules to provide quick access to your project's key source files. All the build files are visible at the top level, under Gradle Scripts.
Each app module contains the following folders:
- manifests: Contains the
- java: Contains the Kotlin and Java source code files, including JUnit test code.
- res: Contains all non-code resources such as UI strings and bitmap images.
The Android project structure on disk differs from this flattened representation. To see the actual file structure of the project, select Project instead of Android from the Project menu.
For more information, see Projects overview.
Gradle build system
Android Studio uses Gradle as the foundation of the build system, with more Android-specific capabilities provided by the Android Gradle plugin. This build system runs as an integrated tool from the Android Studio menu and independently from the command line. You can use the features of the build system to do the following:
- Customize, configure, and extend the build process.
- Create multiple APKs for your app with different features, using the same project and modules.
- Reuse code and resources across source sets.
By employing the flexibility of Gradle, you can achieve all of this without modifying your app's core source files.
Android Studio build files are named
build.gradle.kts if you use
Kotlin (recommended) or
you use Groovy. They are plain text files
that use the Kotlin or Groovy syntax to configure the build with elements
provided by the Android Gradle plugin. Each project has one top-level build file
for the entire project and separate module-level build files for each module.
When you import an existing project, Android Studio automatically generates the
necessary build files.
To learn more about the build system and how to configure your build, see Configure your build.
The build system can help you create different versions of the same app from a single project. This is useful when you have both a free version and a paid version of your app or if you want to distribute multiple APKs for different device configurations on Google Play.
For more information about configuring build variants, see Configure build variants.
Multiple APK support
Multiple APK support lets you efficiently create multiple APKs based on screen
density or ABI. For example, you can create separate APKs of an app for the
mdpi screen densities, while still considering them a single
variant and letting them share test APK,
dx, and ProGuard settings.
For more information about multiple APK support, read Build multiple APKs.
Resource shrinking in Android Studio automatically removes unused resources
from your packaged app and library dependencies. For example, if your
Google Play services
to access Google Drive functionality, and you are not currently using
Google Sign-In, then resource shrinking can
remove the various drawable assets for the
Note: Resource shrinking works in conjunction with code shrinking tools, such as ProGuard.
For more information on shrinking code and resources, see Shrink, obfuscate, and optimize your app.
Dependencies for your project are specified by name in the module-level build
script. Gradle finds dependencies and makes them available in your build. You
can declare module dependencies, remote binary dependencies, and local binary
dependencies in your
Android Studio configures projects to use the Maven Central Repository by default. This configuration is included in the top-level build file for the project.
For more information about configuring dependencies, read Add build dependencies.
Debug and profile tools
Android Studio helps you debug and improve the performance of your code, including inline debugging and performance analysis tools.
Use inline debugging to enhance your code walkthroughs in the debugger view with inline verification of references, expressions, and variable values.
Inline debug information includes:
- Inline variable values
- Objects that reference a selected object
- Method return values
- Lambda and operator expressions
- Tooltip values
To enable inline debugging, in the Debug window, click Settings and select Show Variable Values in Editor.
Android Studio provides performance profilers so you can easily track your app's memory and CPU usage, find deallocated objects, locate memory leaks, optimize graphics performance, and analyze network requests.
To use performance profilers, with your app running on a device or emulator, open the Android Profiler by selecting View > Tool Windows > Profiler.
For more information about performance profilers, see Profile your app performance.
When profiling memory usage in Android Studio, you can simultaneously
initiate garbage collection and dump the Java heap to a heap snapshot in an
HPROF binary format file. The HPROF viewer displays classes,
instances of each class, and a reference tree to help you track memory usage
and find memory leaks.
For more information about working with heap dumps, see Capture a heap dump.
Use Memory Profiler to track memory allocation and watch where objects are being allocated when you perform certain actions. These allocations help you optimize your app’s performance and memory use by adjusting the method calls related to those actions.
For information about tracking and analyzing allocations, see View memory allocations.
Data file access
To view the available generated data files:
- Open the Captures tool window.
- In the list of the generated files, double-click a file to view the data.
- Right-click any HPROF files to convert them to the standard.
- Investigate your RAM usage file format.
Whenever you compile your program, Android Studio automatically runs configured lint checks and other IDE inspections to help you easily identify and correct problems with the structural quality of your code.
The lint tool checks your Android project source files for potential bugs and optimization improvements for correctness, security, performance, usability, accessibility, and internationalization.
In addition to lint checks, Android Studio performs IntelliJ code inspections and validates annotations to streamline your coding workflow.
For more information, see Improve your code with lint checks.
Annotations in Android Studio
Android Studio supports annotations for variables, parameters, and return values to help you catch bugs, such as null pointer exceptions and resource type conflicts.
The Android SDK Manager packages the Jetpack Annotations library in the Android Support Repository for use with Android Studio. Android Studio validates the configured annotations during code inspection.
For more details about Android annotations, see Improve code inspection with annotations.
Sign in to your developer account
Sign in to your developer account in Android Studio to access additional tools that require authentication, such as Firebase. By signing in, you give those tools permission to view and manage your data across Google services.
Once you open a project in Android Studio, you can sign in to your developer account or switch developer accounts as follows:
Click the profile icon at the end of the toolbar.
In the window that appears, do one of the following:
- If you're not yet signed in, click Sign In and allow Android Studio to access the listed services.
If you're already signed in, click Add Account to sign in with another Google account.
Alternatively, you can click Sign Out and repeat the previous steps to sign in to a different account.