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Could I realistically get freelance Android development gigs after just a few months of learning?

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Daniel Clemente

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My friend inspired me to learn Android because he has a social entrepreneurship venture idea, but if I study Android development and the idea fails, I'll still have marketable skills. Would I be able to get gigs with no experience and no degree follow Lex DeVille's advice? I know that I've been jumping around a lot the past two years with this stuff but I'm almost certain that this time it's for real because it's a real project a have with a friend and we're both serious about it and that it could change the world for the better.
 

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Lex DeVille

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The people who make money freelancing with no degree and no experience usually have one thing in common. They don't have to ask if they can do it. They just do it. So it's clearly possible that it can be done. But can you do it? You tell us.

Before embarking on either of the paths you mentioned, you may want to take a step back and read a few threads on working with partners, and partnering with friends. Does your friend have a history of successful businesses? If yes, what does he need you for? If no, why would you start one with him?
 

Julio Andres

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I had been working on Android development for the past 6 years, with a computer science degree. To objectively answer your questions:
Would I be able to get gigs with no degree
Yes
Would I be able to get gigs with no experience
Most likely no.

You don't need a degree to make good Android apps, all the information is on the docs, youtube, udemy, the internet.
But you need to show some experience/portfolio to get hired. I would ask for your portfolio/github before considering hiring you.
Little experience and basic/non portfolio will give you little/non money.

But as Lex told you, I would also suggest to take a step back and ask yourself if this will be a useful step on your long term path. Do you want to be a programmer? or just want to have a skill to make money fast?
If you really want to start taking the software engineer path serious, you can start developing apps and at the same time reading some software engineer textbooks, and if you are really committed you can have a serious marketable and profitable skill on one year.
 

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Daniel Clemente

Daniel Clemente

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@Daniel Clemente It's been a couple of months. What did you decide?
Haven't gotten anywhere. Very frustrating. I have severe discipline problems. I'm currently not working or going to school because I just don't know what to do. I keep thinking to study computer science but programming isn't that fun for me.
 

csalvato

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Make a decision and just do it.

Elon Musk on the topic:

“It is better to make many decisions per unit time with a slightly higher error rate, than few with a slightly lower error rate,” he said last weekend in a series of emails with The Wall Street Journal, “because obviously one of your future right decisions can be to reverse an earlier wrong one, provided the earlier one was not catastrophic, which they rarely are.”
Making a bad decision is 100x better than making no decision. You can always correct a bad decision later. You can't correct inaction.
 

Jon L

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Whether or not you can sell yourself as an android developer to a client has absolutely nothing to do with whether you can develop android apps. It has everything to do with how well you sell. Clients don't actually care that you can write code. They care that you can solve their problem.

I'm not suggesting that you lie, but I am saying that sales is the issue here, not technical skill.

My company develops custom software. I haven't had a single client ask for a reference or want to look at a portfolio. Instead, they want to see how well I understand them and see how good my solution to their problem sounds. I never talk about programming languages up front, or anything technical, unless they ask directly.

Instead, I focus intently on everything they tell me. My goal is for me to develop a full picture of what they're really after. I understand business pretty well (this is a key to selling to business people), so I know how to ask questions that will help me dig into their true goals. These goals are almost never stated up front. They'll come in with, 'I need a new cash register system, but I cant afford to pay $50k for one. Can you build one for me?' What they're really wanting is to be able to have their wife not spend so much time running reports, and for their sales reps to know what is in the warehouse at any time of day. They want to focus on building their business instead of running it. When I ask the series of questions necessary to get to their real goals, they fall in love, and they're sold.

The same thing is true in app sales ... people don't build an app just cause they want to sound cool. They have a specific business purpose in mind, and its not just making money. Find out what they're really after, and you'll hook them.

Obviously, once you've done that, you have to deliver. There are countless ways of delivering, though, including outsourcing to another developer.
 

ArthurVontress

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My friend inspired me to learn Android because he has a social entrepreneurship venture idea, but if I study Android development and the idea fails, I'll still have marketable skills.
This is a non-starter. If your friend inspired you to learn Android to help him... what is he doing to help himself? Why didn't he learn Android?

It appears that you've already decided that this venture will fail and are operating from a defensive stance. Every step you take will be to protect yourself from a failing venture that hasn't even started.

If you can see a market need.... go crush it. Learn what you must and ignore the noise.
 

Tourmaline

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Haven't gotten anywhere. Very frustrating. I have severe discipline problems. I'm currently not working or going to school because I just don't know what to do. I keep thinking to study computer science but programming isn't that fun for me.
To be frank, these are all excuses.

You do not need college to learn to code. Go to college for CS if you want to be a researcher, not if you want to be a coder. There are nearly an infinite number of open source softwares out there that rely on volunteers for coding. You could also simply start making your own app.

Programming is boring as f*ck. You don't code to code. You code to get shit done. You focus on what is getting done and why, not the act itself.
 
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Daniel Clemente

Daniel Clemente

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Whether or not you can sell yourself as an android developer to a client has absolutely nothing to do with whether you can develop android apps. It has everything to do with how well you sell. Clients don't actually care that you can write code. They care that you can solve their problem.

I'm not suggesting that you lie, but I am saying that sales is the issue here, not technical skill.

My company develops custom software. I haven't had a single client ask for a reference or want to look at a portfolio. Instead, they want to see how well I understand them and see how good my solution to their problem sounds. I never talk about programming languages up front, or anything technical, unless they ask directly.

Instead, I focus intently on everything they tell me. My goal is for me to develop a full picture of what they're really after. I understand business pretty well (this is a key to selling to business people), so I know how to ask questions that will help me dig into their true goals. These goals are almost never stated up front. They'll come in with, 'I need a new cash register system, but I cant afford to pay $50k for one. Can you build one for me?' What they're really wanting is to be able to have their wife not spend so much time running reports, and for their sales reps to know what is in the warehouse at any time of day. They want to focus on building their business instead of running it. When I ask the series of questions necessary to get to their real goals, they fall in love, and they're sold.

The same thing is true in app sales ... people don't build an app just cause they want to sound cool. They have a specific business purpose in mind, and its not just making money. Find out what they're really after, and you'll hook them.

Obviously, once you've done that, you have to deliver. There are countless ways of delivering, though, including outsourcing to another developer.
This is my most realistic option. How would I start with this? I know basically nothing about business or how to dig for what they really need. It's sad because I've spend probably days worth of time on this and other forums looking for something I feel like I'll stick to and not give up and that I can easily understand in the first place but nothing has stuck at this point. Edit: I read through DeVille's UpWork thread and decided to give it a try. Only thing is his examples are about copywriting and I'm not completely sure what my niche should be, unless I choose Android or something else programming-related.
 
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