Creating Mobile Phone Apps in School

I am very keen to develop mobile phone apps in school with my students, and have been trying out some of them which are available on the Internet.  I have an iPhone and would love to easily create an app for this.  The 4 free app programs (you have to register/sign up first), that I have briefly trialled are:

appsbar : http://www.appsbar.com
App Inventor for Android (need a google account) : http://appinventor.googlelabs.com/about
appmakr : http://www.appmakr.com
free iphone app maker : http://www.freeiphoneappmaker.com

The app I enjoyed the most for ease of use and simplicity was App Inventor for Android.  After a few teething problems with Java, installing the emulator and connecting it! I found it so easy to use and has similarities to Scratch building blocks.  Here’s an example in the blocks editor:

I followed the HelloPurr tutorial which has very easy step-by-step instructions.  Here is the emulator image:

You upload two files, kitty image and a meow sound, follow the tutorial and when you “tap” the screen the cat meows!  Simple, but you have to start somewhere!

When trying the other above mentioned mobile phone apps, you cant really compare.  There are no easy to use interfaces,  they are wizard based, and no drag and drop simplicity that is  more appropriate to get students engaged quickly.

If you have tried other app creators or been more successful with the ones I have tried, please let me know.  In the meantime I will be working through more tutorials with app inventor for Android, and hope to trial it at school, after getting over the Java etc. teething problems (will ned to speak to the techie! 🙂

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