It is quite a while since I am investigating how Android developers maintain their apps. Yesterday I presented a study about how maintainability issues of Android apps evolve at the 34th International Conference on Software Maintenance and Evolution (ICSME 2018).

The study uncovers the frequency and evolution of maintainability issues of Android apps. Its results show that:

  1. Code duplication is the most recurrent maintainability issue, which is intrinsic in the Android programming model and can be mitigated by a more careful programming style (let’s discuss this!)
  2. Notwithstanding the issue type, maintainability issue density grows until it stabilizes, but issues are seldom fully resolved, which represents an important hidden lack of quality
  3. Maintainability hotspots are independent from the type of development activity, which means: whatever you do, your development style will matter

The full paper is available here and below you can find the slides of the talk.