UPDATE: This technique is obsolete, there are now various other ways to make an app.. this may not work anymore.
My first published app is available for download on the Android App Market here. The following is a quick tutorial on how practically anyone can create one. This is an app that can display info/media feeds from various sources(facebook, blogs, twitter, searches etc.)
I had to figure out how to build a simple app at work the other day.. so decided to look at all the online webapps that do it for you using content from your website, blog or other feeds.
You'll find a bunch of them if you google, but this one works well(and wasn't blocked by my office firewall).. has a lot of customisability and covers most platforms(android, ios, windows phone, bada..). Its called Conduit, try it at mobile.conduit.com.
I no longer use that site.. found http://www.appyet.com/ to be way better.
Step 1: Heres What You Need
1) a computer with internet access
2) some image editing tools and skills
3) content in the form of a blog, twitter, flickr, youtube, etc.. anything with an rss feed will work.
4) a device to test or use the app on - PC/MAC Browser, Android device, IOS Device, Windows Phone, Bada
for android and windows phone the site generates the installer file(.apk etc.) that you can immediately test on your device.
However for IOS and Bada you need to get a dev license
6) If you want to publish your app on any appstore/market you'll need Developer licences for android($23), IOS($99), Windows Phone($99), Bada(free) . i have two android devices and lots of friends and coworkers with android devices as well.. so got the android license.
Step 2: Step 1
Go to http://mobile.conduit.com/
and punch in the url to your web page, cms(blogs etc.) based pages work best.
Press the "Create" button.
Step 3: Step 2
The site detects all the feeds on your page and creates"pages" for the app from them.
from here on its pretty simple.
Step 4: Step 3
add more pages if you like. You have a few layout options for each one.
A lot of DJs and musicians have used the Audio page.. it lets the user play music from your collection either using a "Media RSS" or Soundcloud .The track will even play in the background while the user browses the other app pages!
Step 5: Step 4
Edit the look and feel by tweaking colors, and uploading header or background images. an app image will also be required. The site will tell you the sizes and formats required when you click the "add image" or "upload image" buttons
Step 6: Step 5
You can now test the app using Conduit's "Re.vu" app and your app's app code
or you can publish it to the mobile format you want to test it in.
i did the latter, so will talk about that from now on.
Step 7: Step 6
Before hitting "Generate mobile app", go back to the edit page and take some app screenshots of the app in the emulator(i used windows' Snipping tool for this).
When you hit "Generate mobile app" you'l come to a page where you cna fill in info about your app, and upload images for the splash screen and app screenshots for the app stores.
Step 8: Step 7
Hit the big "Generate" button.
That brings you to the app home page, where you can see that its in the process of generating the Android, Windows Phone and Browser apps. The IOS app will require an apple certificate(which i don't have yet, so skipped)
At this point you can already use a few versions of your app:
the Mobile site and the Browser app.. are ready and you can send them to your friends.
Step 9: Step 8
Once the generating is done for the android and windows phone apps, click the "Upload to Android Market" or "Upload to Marketplace" buttons to go to the page that tells you how to go about publishing it on the respective markets.
That process takes a little longer, but you don't have to wait to try it out on your device!
Just scroll down to "Upload to Store" section of the instructions and click to expand it. There you'l find a download link for the app installer!
put it on your device and install! thats it.
Step 10: Step 9
To publish on any of the markets you have to pay a onetime fee..
in my case i paid a $25 fee to the android market and was able to submit the APK file allong with screenshots, etc..
The next day the app was in the market.
havnt published to the other markets or app stores.. coz the developer fee is $99 for IOS and Windows phone(you can already test your windows app though..and distribute it through other channels)
Bada is free.. so am registering there now.
sohail abbas made it!