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java – Android – Format Timestamp in ListView with Cursor Adapter

Posted by: admin June 15, 2020 Leave a comment


I am using a SimpleCursorAdapter to populate an Android ListView, and was wondering how I should go about getting all of the timestamps I get from a database, each in “DATE_DATE” into human readable dates, maybe using SimpleDateFormat?

Cursor programDateCursor = mDbAdapter.loadProgramDates();


String[] from = new String[]{ "DATE_DATE" };

int[] to = new int[]{ R.id.text1 };

SimpleCursorAdapter programDates = 
             new SimpleCursorAdapter(this, R.layout.program_date,
                                      programDateCursor, from, to);


I’ve not done much work with Java, so is there a better way / any way to do this? Other than storing the preformatted dates in the database before hand, that is?

How to&Answers:

You’re going to have to create a custom CursorAdapter to be able to format your timestamps.

public class MyAdapter extends CursorAdapter {
    private final LayoutInflater mInflater;

    public MyAdapter(Context context, Cursor cursor) {
        super(context, cursor, false);
        mInflater = LayoutInflater.from(context);

    public View newView(Context context, Cursor cursor, ViewGroup parent) {
         return mInflater.inflate(R.layout.program_date, parent, false);

    public void bindView(View view, Context context, Cursor cursor) {
        long time = cursor.getLong(cursor.getColumnIndex("DATE_DATE")) * 1000L;

        Calendar cal = Calendar.getInstance();

        String format = "M/dd h:mm a";
        SimpleDateFormat sdf = new SimpleDateFormat(format);
        String dateString = sdf.format(cal.getTime());

        ((TextView) view.findViewById(R.id.text1)).setText(dateString);

The list to change the String format to your liking is here.

You’d then use this adapter with

Cursor programDateCursor = mDbAdapter.loadProgramDates();

setListAdapter(new MyAdapter(this, programDateCursor));


Store Unix epoch dates as INTEGER type in SQLite database. Then in Java, initialize them with new Date(value) (or value*1000, I’m not sure) and use SimpleDateFormat to format dates in list adapter.

I think that’s the most convenient way for the limited information you’ve provided.


I found it easiest to do the following:

SimpleDateFormat oldTime = new SimpleDateFormat("HH:mm:ss");
SimpleDateFormat newTime = new SimpleDateFormat("hh:mm:ss a");

String stringTime;

try {

        String reformattedStr = newTime.format(oldTime.parse(stringTime));
        } catch (ParseException e) {