The Software World

I Started Android Development At 40

It’s not too late to restart your software development career at 40

8 min readFeb 1, 2022
Photo by Rana Sawalha on Unsplash

Someone once told me, “At 35 if you are still a programmer, consider starting looking for some other options for the next half of your career. The younger generation is catching up, and soon you’ll be obsolete.”

True enough, at 35, I did start to reflect on what I was doing. My situation was different though. I was not a programmer at that age. I was in management. At that time, I did miss part of my early days as a C++ programmer,

I did have a short duration of the first few years of my career as a C++ developer. However, after starting a management role, my programming skill rusted. My day-to-day jobs are meetings, PowerPoint and Excel, and of course, lots of emails. I barely read codes, for weeks to months, not to mention writing codes.

When Management is No Longer An Option

At the age of 39, I migrated to a new country. In the new country, my management skill is no longer relevant. The companies here prefer people with local experience for management roles.

I have an option to change career and work on some other casual job that does not need technical knowledge. But I do love programming. I want to get back to where I started. So, I tried several interviews on C++.

Embarrassingly, I didn’t even pass the preliminary coding test. I was disheartened.

I wasn’t even sure I want to get back to C++ again. Those C++ jobs are for embedded software development involving hardware, and not the mainstream software development of my interest.

Step 1: Preparation — Know What I Want

Given that I’m no longer keen on C++ itself, what do I want to do?

At that time, mobile development was the main hot topic, especially iOS. But to get onto iOS, I need to get a MacBook and iPhone. I don’t have either. It will be too much to invest if I was not sure I can get into it.

I have a Windows laptop and a Samsung S2 phone back then. I saw Android development as a growing trend. Android although…