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ENGINEERING

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Best Android Libraries of 2015

As we rely heavily on numerous third-party libraries in our day to day work, we wanted to tip the hat to their creators. Here are five libs I believe stood out this year and made my life easier.

1. Dagger 2.0

A great update to the most efficient dependency injector around. Google did a big overhaul on this library to ‘improve the developer experience’. This new version includes annotation processing, making it a lot more useful than its predecessor.

2. Retrofit 2.0

Another updated library, rather than a completely new one. Retrofit is the most popular HTTP client for Android and Java, and this new version can be configured to a much greater extent than 1.x and supports many extension libraries.

3. RxJava/RxAndroid

This is a completely new approach to coding for Android. ReactiveX brings reactive programming to an abundance of languages, including not only Java, but also Kotlin and Clojure, for example. For anyone who’s missed out on the reactive programming hype, here is a good explanation. If you are building highly interactive apps with many data streams, RxAndroid may be worth looking at.

4. Retrolambda

Retrolambda allows you to run Java 8 magic (including the titular lambda expressions) on older Java runtimes, including the Java 7 JDK which is officially required for Android development. It makes code a lot cleaner and more concise, and event listeners less cumbersome. It goes great with the abovementioned RxAndroid to create performant, reactive mobile experiences.

5. Carbon

Last but not least, there’s Carbon – a great library written by my colleague Marcin that not only enabled Material Design implementation before official Google components came out, but also brings the wonders of the new design language to older Android versions, starting at 2.2.

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KonradSenior Software Engineer

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