App Inventor

Google has announced that its popular (and fun) tool App Inventor is now open to anyone with a Google account.  If you're not quite sure what App Inventor is exactly, don't feel too bad -- in typical Google fashion it's been a limited access tool, trickling out to users a few at a time.  Think of it as a tool to create fun little apps, for people who have no idea how to create fun little apps.  All you need to get started is a PC or Mac, an Android phone, and a Google account.  And you'll want to visit and bookmark our App Inventor forum -- it's bound to get jumping now that anyone with a creative streak has access to the tools.  There's a short demo after the break, and hit the source link to get started. [Google Research Blog]


YouTube link for mobile viewing


Reader comments

App Inventor now open to everyone


I didn't :) Linux runs on a PC (personal computer), just like every other OS. Even MacOS, but they get rowdy if they don't get special attention lol.

The source link tells you what software is supported.

Damn I forgot I had this thing on my laptop lol. I did the cat meow example app lmao it works.... maybe I should put more time I to it

>"All you need to get started is a PC or Mac"

I don't exactly know what "a PC" means, but MS-Windows, MacOS, and Linux are supported:

System requirements:

Computer and operating system
* Macintosh (with Intel processor): Mac OS X 10.5, 10.6
* Windows: Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7
* GNU/Linux: Ubuntu 8+, Debian 5+ (or equiv)

* Mozilla Firefox 3.6 or higher
* Apple Safari 5.0 or higher
* Google Chrome 4.0 or higher
* Microsoft Internet Explorer 7 or higher

Your computer needs to run Java 6 (also known as Java 1.6).

I checked out this App Inventor about a month ago. My wife was granted access because she attended an Android lecture at her college and they were playing with App Inventor. Nothing special, does some simple little apps. Funny part was they had a Sprint rep there and he told everyone how Honeycomb was going to be out on phones very soon! I told my wife that Sprint rep was talking smack because they don't even have Gingerbread out on phones yet, let alone Honeycomb..

I don't really like apps because they promote the creation of more generic apps than could be possible with regular coding, but that's just me. I've always disliked using Gamemaker for that reason. I can understand it allowing people who have good ideas to create an app without coding experience, but if you're that passionate about your idea, then you should really either learn code or hire a coder. Of course different strokes for different folks and I do appreciate Google for giving us options.

This worked great for teaching my 9 and 10 year old the basics of programming. And they got to make a really annoying cat app(s) that they put on my phone and use to drive my wife crazy. I wouldn't say it's possible to make any app that should be taken seriously in the app store though.

I would use this if Chrome would run JNLP files rather than downloading them. Kind of annoying that Google puts out a free tool that doesn't even run on their browser.