Android Studio is undeniably the IDE of at least 99% of all Android Developers. It’s based off of IntelliJ IDEA which is already a powerful IDE for a variety of software development fields.
There are a multitude of plugins built for Android Studio itself, but this fact makes it so that Android Studio can make use of plugins designed for base IntelliJ IDEA.
In this list, I’ve rounded up the 9 most useful tools in the IDE to an Android Developer. These plugins may or may not be Android specific but they will definitely come of use in Android Development. Some of these have rather explosive use-cases.
Before we begin, I’m just gonna say any shortcuts I’ll be listing here will be mac-specific. Soz windows users.
The only 2 rules here starts with NO JAVA SPECIFIC PLUGINS. In 2020, we live in a Kotlin age. That also means no Butterknife.
We also won’t include any plugins that help or are required for specific development technologies, like Flutter for example. Now let’s get on with the list.
9. Name that Color
Too many developers decide to clutter their colors.xml files with ‘grey’, ‘lighter_grey’, and ‘lightest_grey’. Please, stop. It makes it harder for developers new to your codebase to understand just how light ‘lightest_grey’ is.
Name that Color lets you paste hexadecimal values into your colors.xml file as a complete <color> value with it’s appropriate name.
By pressing ^SPACE after copying a hex code, you get to paste your color in its complete XML color value form.
8. Material Theme UI
This plugin changes the look and feel of your entire IDE. Say bye to the standard light or darcula themes you get offered by default. My theme here is Material Theme UI in action.
Not only does Material Theme UI give you plenty of presets to choose from, but customising your look and feel becomes a whole lot easier and more dynamic.
I owe a lot of my long hours of focus to my sheer satisfaction for my theme bestowed by this plugin which I’ve been using for years now.
Fans of Sublime Text will be familiar with the little view on the side of your workspace which shows you a minified version of the entirety of the current file.
CodeGlance gives you just that in your Android Studio IDE. For one thing, it helps you scroll more easily to sections of your code you need to work on.
For another thing, it makes it easier to get a complete grasp of your code in your head and help you see the full picture of where your code goes.
6. String Manipulation
Sort lists of strings, toggle between camelCase and kebab-case, trim, encode, escape, you name it. This plugin has everything to do with manipulation of strings.
On top of regular day-to-day use cases, keeping a neat strings.xml file is crucial for preventing it from complete turmoil.
String Manipulation shortcuts can be accessed by pressing ⌥M or ⌥⇧M.
5. Material Design Icon Generator
Similar to the first feature of Android Drawable Importer, you can easily import Android and Material Icons, specifying colour, size, and resolutions.
The colour selection uses the material-colour naming which makes it easy for developers to know which colours to use, with or without a designer. You can also make your asset either an image or a vector.
This action can be accessed by right-clicking anywhere on the left-side project directory as if you’re adding a new image asset. You can also use the ⌥⌘M shortcut.
4. Android Drawable Importer
Android Drawable Importer lets you do 3 amazing things.
The first is basically material design icon generator. Fair enough. The second lets you select assets (or a whole folder of them) and specify the resolutions they need to be resized to.
The third lets you easily import zip files with multiple files arranged by resolution (e.g. drawable_mdpi, drawable_hdpi). Specify one name and the rest is done by the plugin.
You can find these actions in the same right-click menu as Material Design Icon Generator.
3. Rainbow Brackets
Rainbow Brackets colours your brackets in pairs. Brackets hell becomes a little more colourful and easier to map out as a result.
This works for parenthesis and square brackets too. Basically anything that groups code in pairs.
2. JSON to Kotlin
Copy the contents of a JSON file. Paste it and let it get formatted into a data class that can process it. That’s what JSON to Kotlin.
First, save that boilerplate work. Second, if you ever get caught in a situation where you don’t know what data type a field in an incoming JSON file should use, this plugin is your guy.
Access this feature via ⌥K and parse away.
1. ADB IDEA
Testing and debugging is undoubtedly 80% of an Android Developer’s job. Install, uninstall, clear data, revoke permissions, restart with debugger, ADB is a powerful tool.
Sure, we can do all of this in the terminal. It definitely feels good the first few times doing it that way but quickly gets tedious.
ADB IDEA saves tremendous time by putting all these commands into a quick to access menu on the Android Studio toolbar in Tools.
Bonus 1: Power Mode II
When I mentioned explosive use-cases, I meant that quite literally.
Power Mode II makes your IDE shake with embers as you code to make you feel like a real powerhouse. This plugin is pretty full of visual surprises. Try deleting a real huge block of code.
Bonus 2: Nyan Cat Progress Bar
Nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan nyan.
Make your boring old progress bar into a nyan. What else do you need?
So that’s my top 10 list on the best Android Studio plugins just coming into 2020. I tried to keep it to plugins that are useful and in some way, increase development efficiency.
Even the more visual ones like rainbow brackets help you code through making your environment more comfy and thus, productive.
If you don’t agree with my list, fret not, this is just my opinion. However, throw it down in the comments because why not?