How are Contracts Used in Android Mobile Applications?


Formal contracts and assertions are effective methods to enhance software quality by enforcing preconditions, postconditions, and invariants. However, the adoption and impact of contracts in the context of mobile application development, particularly of Android applications, remain unexplored. We present the first large-scale empirical study on the presence and use of contracts in Android applications, written in Java or Kotlin. We consider 2,390 applications and five categories of contract elements: conditional runtime exceptions, APIs, annotations, assertions, and other. We show that most contracts are annotation-based and are concentrated in a small number of applications.

In In International Conference of Software Engineering, 2024, Poster Paper (ICSE Companion).
Alexandra Mendes
Assistant Professor

My research focuses on encouraging a wider adoption of software verification by creating tools and methods that hide the complexities of verifying software. Recently, I started work on usable security, in particular on the impact of formal verification on the use and adoption of formally verified security software products. Much of my most recent work overlaps with the area of software engineering. For more details, see selected publications and some of my projects. Follow me on Twitter or add me on LinkedIn.