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Android Developer Interview Questions

Position Summary

Android developers design applications for devices that use the Android operating system. There are several versions of Android being used, depending on the type of device, and Android developers must take this into account when developing an application.

Android developers must be able to develop an expert understanding of the Android operating system in order to design an application that will work across different versions of Android. Additionally, Android developers need to take into account different screen sizes and pixelation capabilities in order to provide the best user experience possible.


Android Developer responsibilities may include:

  • Translating designs into code
  • Maintaining code quality
  • Automating processes within the application
  • Designing reliable Java code
  • Testing out applications and resolving bugs


Applications are quickly becoming a very profitable market with billions of earnings each year. In order to provide the best user experience possible, a skilled Android developer will:

  • Possess an eye for detail in order to spot errors in code
  • Communicate with management about timelines, milestones, and potential problems
  • Be committed to delivering the highest quality product possible
  • Deal with bugs quickly as they come up to ensure quality user experience
  • Use customer feedback to improve the application


Entry-level positions typically require a bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related field. In order to stand out among applicants or to gain higher level management positions, candidates are encouraged to obtain a master’s degree.

However, experience is a deciding factor in employment as well. If a candidate has already published successful apps and possesses experience in the field, that can mitigate the lack of a formal education.

If you’re getting ready to interview for a position as an Android developer, you can prepare by researching the company as much as possible. Learn about the 9 things you should research before an interview.


Salaries for Android developers range between $37K and $64K with the median being $50K. 

Factors impacting the salary you receive as an Android developer include:

  • Degrees (associate's or equivalent technical certification, bachelor's, master's, etc.)
  • Years of Experience
  • Location
  • Reporting Structure (seniority of the manager you report to and number of direct reports)
  • Level of Performance - exceeding expectations

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Android Developer Questions

Question: Please define ANR and describe why it happens.

Explanation: The interviewer is opening the interview with a technical question. As an Android developer, you can anticipate the bulk of the interview to be technical and operational questions which test your knowledge, experience, and qualifications. Technical questions are best responded to briefly and directly.

Example: “ANR within the Android universe stands for application not responding. This happens when a user is interacting with some activity and the activity is in the onResume{} method. Typical causes of this are when the user has multiple tasks running or is downloading data to an application in the user interface. The solution is to start large applications in the background.” 

Question: Can you create an activity in Android which does not have a user interface?

Explanation: This is another technical question, but it is also a follow up to the previous question. Any time you respond to a question, you can anticipate follow-up questions. The interviewer uses them to explore the topic in more depth or to confirm an answer you provided.  Since you mentioned user interface in your previous answer, the interviewer is asking about this.

Example: “Yes, activities on the Android platform can be created without any user interface. These activities operate in the background and are treated as abstract. They often support other functions and applications.”

Question: What is a broadcast receiver on an Android platform, and what are some of its functions?

Explanation: The best way to prepare for technical questions is to review the job posting as well as research the company and the applications it develops. This will give you an idea about their methodology and the commands they use. You should then review the terms, techniques, processes, and procedures used within the Android application environment. It is also recommended to practice questions such as these.

Example: “The purpose of a broadcast receiver is to communicate with the operating system and manage messages such as determining whether the device is connected to the service provider or the internet, monitoring the battery level, and displaying its status to the user.”

Question: Can you list and explain the purpose of each of the four Java classes related to the use of sensors on the Android platform?

Explanation: When the interviewer asks this type of question, it is best to respond in a manner that mirrors the format of the question. Since they are asking for the four Java classes and their relationship to the use of sensors, this is the only information you should provide. Anything else would be superfluous. The interviewer will ask a follow-up question if they need additional information or clarification.

Example: "The four Java classes related to the use of sensors on the Android platform are:

Sensor - identifies which capabilities are available for a specific sensor

SensorManager: enables calibrating sensors and registering sensor event listeners

SensorEvent: provides raw sensor data such as accuracy

SensorEventListener: designates callback methods that will be notified."

Question: Please define ContentProvider and describe what it is used for.

Explanation: This question illustrates the typical structure of a technical question. It asks you first to define a term and then describe its use. Keep in mind that your answers to technical questions should be concise and direct. Anticipate a follow-up question any time you provide an answer.

Example: “ContentProvider is a function that manages access to data. It structures the data and provides mechanisms for determining the data security. It also connects data from one process to another process.”

Question: What are the three uses for an Intent?

Explanation: Again, the interviewer is asking for a specific number of uses of a command within the Android environment. Make sure you provide them with three uses, not two or four. In addition to answering questions, your responses demonstrate your other skills, such as the ability to listen and follow directions.

Example: "Three common uses for an Intent are:

1. To start an activity by passing an Intent to startActivity() method

2. To deliver a broadcast to other apps by passing an Intent to sendBroadcast(), sendOrderedBroadcast(), or sendStickyBroadcast().

3. To start a service to perform a unique operation by passing an Intent to startService()."

Question: What could be a likely cause of a problem in which the values of a foreground display are not restored correctly after the device has been reoriented?

Explanation: This is an example of an operational question. Operational questions seek to understand how you go about doing your job. By asking this question, the interviewer is seeking to determine how you would diagnose and fix the problem they are describing.

Example: “For the Android system to restore the state of the display and reorient it when the phone is moved from horizontal to vertical, the view must have a unique ID supplied by the android:id attribute.”

Question: Can you describe what DDMS is and what some of its capabilities are?

Explanation: You probably recognize this as a technical question because it is asking for a definition and an example of how the term is used. As the interview progresses, the questions will become more specific and more difficult. This indicates the interviewer is gaining confidence in your capabilities and is willing to explore more complex items. Continue to answer these questions briefly and directly.

Example: "DDMS stands for Dalvik Debug Monitor Server. This ships with the Android operating system. It assists the developer with several debugging functions including:

Incoming call and SMS spoofing

Screen capture

Thread and heap information

Simulating network state, speed, and latency

Setwork traffic tracking."

Question: Can an Intent be used to provide data to a ContentProvider?

Explanation: This brief technical question can be answered with just as brief of a response - yes or no. However, any response you give should provide some background to support your answer. This demonstrates your understanding of the concept.

Example: “While Intent is used for starting new activities and transferring data between activities, you cannot use it to provide data to a ContentProvider. This is accomplished by using ContentResolver. The ContentResolver object sends a request to the provider object which receives the data requests from clients, performs the requested action, and returns the results.”

Question: Can you explain the relationship between a fragment and an activity and how these two items related to each other?

Explanation: This question is asking you to define the relationship between two components of the Android operating system. A common pitfall of this type of question is providing too much information since there are probably many differences or similarities between these two items. Keep in mind that the interviewer has the opportunity to ask a follow-up question if you don’t provide enough information. However, if you provide too much information, their only recourse is to interrupt you so they can ask another question.

Example: “An activity is a single operation that a user performs, such as taking a picture. However, developers can create an activity that is more complex by using fragments which are components of an activity. Fragments help the developer create modular code, build sophisticated user interfaces, and scale applications. Several fragments can be combined within a single activity. A fragment can also be reused across multiple activities. This helps create economies of scale when developing applications.”

Additional Android Developer Questions

  • Are you able to complete projects on time if there are multiple deadlines for multiple projects?

  • Can you tell me the various ways to apply multi-threading to an Android app?

  • Have you ever had an issue with another team member? How was it resolved?

  • Describe a situation for which you might use an Intent.

  • What is a Content Provider, and what is it typically used for?

A word of warning when using question lists.

Question lists offer a convenient way to start practicing for your interview. Unfortunately, they do little to recreate actual interview pressure. In a real interview you’ll never know what’s coming, and that’s what makes interviews so stressful.

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