Mastering Android Product Flavors and Dynamic APK Naming

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Jigar Rughani
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29 Nov, 2023

Introduction:
Are you ready to explore the world of Android app development? In this post, we’ll delve into Android Product Flavors, also known as build types or build variants. These are essential for creating different versions of the same application with minor changes. By the end of this post, you’ll have a solid grasp of Android Product Flavors and how to manage APKs with custom naming dynamically.
 

Section 1: Android Product Flavors 

  1. Introduction to Android Product Flavors:  Android Product Flavors, powered by Gradle and Android Studio, enable developers to implement multiple versions of an app with minor variations. 
  2. Use Cases for Android Product Flavors:  Product flavors are perfect for scenarios like creating different environments (staging and production), changing themes, text, APIs, or configurations.
     

Section 2: Creating Android Product Flavors 

  1.  Adding Product Flavors:  In your ‘build.gradle’ file, you can define different flavors. For instance, we’ll add ‘flavor1’ and ‘flavor2.’ 
  2. Customizing Product Flavors: Each flavor can have unique settings, such as application package name, version code, version name, main layout, theme color, and app name.
     

Section 3: Implementation Steps 

Step 1: Start by creating an application with basic functionality. 

Step 2: Define build variants in Gradle, specifying the flavor’s details. 

Step 3: Create directories in the project structure view that match the product flavors you’ve defined in Gradle. 

Step 4: You now have different flavors of the same application.
 

Changing Build Variants: 

To switch between build variants in Android Studio, navigate to ‘Build’ and select ‘Build Variant’ from the drop-down menu.
 

Dynamic APK Naming with Custom Names: 

Benefits: Organize APKs efficiently with custom names, making tracking and record-keeping easier. Manage and identify APKs with version and date-based names. 

How: Add the following lines in your ‘build.gradle’ file below the ‘defaultConfig’ block after declaring ‘versionName.’

Example: 

Define the date for the build dynamically, set custom names for DEBUG, RELEASE, and UAT builds based on your requirements.

def date = new Date() // create new date for build 

def dateString = date.format(‘ddMMyyyy’) 

 

buildTypes { 

    debug { 

    debuggable true 

     minifyEnabled false 

   proguardFiles getDefaultProguardFile(‘proguard-android-optimize.txt’), ‘proguard- rules.pro’ 

          //****************dynamic name for DEBUG build*****************  

         setProperty(“archivesBaseName”, “YourAppName_” + dateString) //dynamic APK naming with our requirement. 

 

    } 

    

 release { 

        minifyEnabled false 

        proguardFiles getDefaultProguardFile(‘proguard-android-optimize.txt’), ‘proguard-rules.pro’ 

        debuggable false 

        //****************dynamic name for RELEASE build***************** 

        setProperty(“archivesBaseName”, “YourAppName_” + dateString) //dynamic APK naming with our requirement. 

 

    } 

    uat { 

        minifyEnabled false 

        proguardFiles getDefaultProguardFile(‘proguard-android-optimize.txt’), ‘proguard-rules.pro’ 

        debuggable false 

        //****************dynamic name for UAT build***************** 

      setProperty(“archivesBaseName”, “YourAppName_” + dateString) //dynamic APK naming with our requirement. 

    }

Conclusion: 

In this comprehensive guide, we’ve explored Android Product Flavors and dynamic APK naming, giving you the tools to manage multiple app versions efficiently. Now, it’s your turn to create fantastic Android apps. Share your experiences in the comments! 

 

Tags :

AndroidAppDevelopment AndroidStudio APKNaming BuildVariants CodingTips ProductFlavors TechGuide

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