Tools Overview

The Android SDK includes a variety of custom tools that help you develop mobile applications on the Android platform. The most important of these are the Android Emulator and the Android Development Tools plugin for Eclipse, but the SDK also includes a variety of other tools for debugging, packaging, and installing your applications on the emulator.

Android Development Tools Plugin (for the Eclipse IDE) The ADT plugin adds powerful extensions to the Eclipse integrated environment, making creating and debugging your Android applications easier and faster. If you use Eclipse, the ADT plugin gives you an incredible boost in developing Android applications.

Android Emulator

A QEMU-based device-emulation tool that you can use to design, debug, and test your applications in an actual Android run-time environment. Android Virtual Devices (AVDs)

Virtual device configurations that you create, to model device characteristics in the Android Emulator. In each configuration, you can specify the Android platform to run, the hardware options, and the emulator skin to use. Each AVD functions as an independent device with it's own storage for user data, SD card, and so on.


This tool produces graphical analysis views of trace log data that you can generate from your Android application.


Helps you create a disk image that you can use with the emulator, to simulate the presence of an external storage card (such as an SD card).

The dx tool rewrites .class bytecode into Android bytecode (stored in .dex files.) UI/Application Exerciser Monkey

The Monkey is a program that runs on your emulator or device and generates pseudo-random streams of user events such as clicks, touches, or gestures, as well as a number of system- level events. You can use the Monkey to stress-test applications that you are developing, in a random yet repeatable manner.


A script that lets you manage AVDs and generate Ant build files that you can use to compile your Android applications. zipalign

An important .apk optimization tool. This tool ensures that all uncompressed data starts with a particular alignment relative to the start of the file. This should always be used to align .apk files after they have been signed.

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