June 27, 2022

Android Interview Questions 2

 Describe different types of Services in Android ?

A Service is an application component that can perform long-running operations in the background, and it doesn't provide a user interface. It can run in the background, even when the user is not interacting with your application. These are the three different types of services:

  • Foreground Service: A foreground service performs some operation that is noticeable to the user. For example, we can use a foreground service to play an audio track.
  • Background Service: A background service performs an operation that isn’t directly noticed by the user. In Android API level 26 and above, there are restrictions to using background services and it is recommended to use WorkManager in these cases.
  • Bound Service: A service is bound when an application component binds to it by calling bindService(). A bound service offers a client-server interface that allows components to interact with the service, send requests, receive results. A bound service runs only as long as another application component is bound to it.

How can two distinct Android apps interact?

At the simplest level there are two different ways for apps to interact on Android: via Intents, passing data from one application to another; and through Services, where one application provides functionality for others to use.

What are Retained Fragments?

By default, Fragments are destroyed and recreated along with their parent Activity’s when a configuration change occurs.

Calling setRetainInstance(true) allows us to bypass this destroy-and-recreate cycle, signaling the system to retain the current instance of the fragment when the activity is recreated.

What are the permission protection levels in Android?

Normal — A lower-risk permission that gives requesting applications access to isolated application-level features, with minimal risk to other applications, the system, or the user. The system automatically grants this type of permission to a requesting application at installation, without asking for the user’s explicit approval.

Dangerous — A higher-risk permission. Any dangerous permissions requested by an application may be displayed to the user and require confirmation before proceeding, or some other approach may be taken to avoid the user automatically allowing the use of such facilities.

Signature — A permission that the system grants only if the requesting application is signed with the same certificate as the application that declared the permission. If the certificates match, the system automatically grants the permission without notifying the user or asking for the user’s explicit approval.

SignatureOrSystem — A permission that the system grants only to applications that are in the Android system image or that are signed with the same certificate as the application that declared the permission.

What is a JobScheduler?

The JobScheduler API performs an operation for your application when a set of predefined conditions are met (such as when a device is plugged into a power source or connected to a Wi-Fi network). This allows your app to perform the given task while being considerate of the device's battery at the cost of timing control.

Unlike the AlarmManager class, the timing isn't exact. Compared to a custom SyncAdapter or the AlarmManager, the JobScheduler supports batch scheduling of jobs. The Android system can combine jobs so that battery consumption is reduced. JobManager makes handling uploads easier as it handles automatically the unreliability of the network. It also survives application restarts. Here are example when you would use this job scheduler:

  • Tasks that should be done once the device is connect to a power supply
  • Tasks that require network access or a Wi-Fi connection.
  • Task that are not critical or user facing
  • Tasks that should be running on a regular basis as batch where the timing is not critical

What is the ViewHolder pattern? Why should we use it?

Every time when the adapter calls getView() method, the findViewById() method is also called. This is a very intensive work for the mobile CPU and so affects the performance of the application and the battery consumption increases. ViewHolder is a design pattern which can be applied as a way around repeated use of findViewById(). A ViewHolder holds the reference to the id of the view resource and calls to the resource will not be required after you "find" them: Thus performance of the application increases.

What is the difference between Handler vs AsyncTask vs Thread?

The Handler class can be used to register to a thread and provides a simple channel to send data to this thread. A Handler allows you communicate back with the UI thread from other background thread.

The AsyncTask class encapsulates the creation of a background process and the synchronization with the main thread. It also supports reporting progress of the running tasks.

And a Thread is basically the core element of multithreading which a developer can use with the 
following disadvantage:
  • Handle synchronization with the main thread if you post back results to the user interface
  • No default for canceling the thread
  • No default thread pooling
  • No default for handling configuration changes in Android

What is the difference between compileSdkVersion and targetSdkVersion?

The compileSdkVersion is the version of the API the app is compiled against. This means you can use Android API features included in that version of the API (as well as all previous versions, obviously). If you try and use API 16 features but set compileSdkVersion to 15, you will get a compilation error. If you set compileSdkVersion to 16 you can still run the app on a API 15 device as long as your app's execution paths do not attempt to invoke any APIs specific to API 16.

The targetSdkVersion has nothing to do with how your app is compiled or what APIs you can utilize. The targetSdkVersion is supposed to indicate that you have tested your app on (presumably up to and including) the version you specify. This is more like a certification or sign off you are giving the Android OS as a hint to how it should handle your app in terms of OS features.

What is the difference between a Bundle and an Intent?

A Bundle is a collection of key-value pairs.

However, an Intent is much more. It contains information about an operation that should be performed. This new operation is defined by the action it can be used for, and the data it should show/edit/add. The system uses this information for finding a suitable app component (activity/broadcast/service) for the requested action.

What is an Intent? Can it be used to provide data to a ContentProvider? Why or why not?

The Intent object is a common mechanism for starting new activity and transferring data from one activity to another. However, you cannot start a ContentProvider using an Intent.

When you want to access data in a ContentProvider, you must instead use the ContentResolver object in your application’s Context to communicate with the provider as a client. The ContentResolver object communicates with the provider object, an instance of a class that implements ContentProvider. The provider object receives data requests from clients, performs the requested action, and returns the results.

What is the difference between Service and IntentService? How is each used?

Service is the base class for Android services that can be extended to create any service. A class that directly extends Service runs on the main thread so it will block the UI (if there is one) and should therefore either be used only for short tasks or should make use of other threads for longer tasks.

IntentService is a subclass of Service that handles asynchronous requests (expressed as “Intents”) on demand. Clients send requests through startService(Intent) calls. The service is started as needed, handles each Intent in turn using a worker thread, and stops itself when it runs out of work. Writing an IntentService can be quite simple; just extend the IntentService class and override the onHandleIntent(Intent intent) method where you can manage all incoming requests.

What is a broadcast receiver?

The broadcast receiver communicates with the operation system messages such as “check whether an internet connection is available,” what the battery label should be, etc.

Is it possible to create an activity in Android without a user interface ?

Yes, an activity can be created without any user interface. These activities are treated as abstract activities.

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