Cross-platform app development with Xamarin allows software companies to save a great deal of time and significantly boost profits. App developers can accelerate mobile app creation processes using Xamarin.iOS with Xamarin.Android or Xamarin.Forms, the Visual Studio Library.
Xamarin.Forms is a library that allows building native UIs for iOS, Android and Windows Phone from a single, shared C# codebase. It provides more than 40 cross-platform controls and layouts which are mapped to native controls at runtime.
Xamarin.Forms is used for creating fully native Android, iOS, and Universal Windows Platform apps with a coding language C# in Visual Studio. It provides .NET developers with a UI toolkit that can be used across various app frameworks.
Benefits of Cross-platform App Development with Xamarin
1. Native Design
Xamarin Studio (IDE) allows building a native UI. This library also gives access to device-specific features, and most importantly, helps achieve native performance.
Xamarin Designer for Android and iOS helps create the apps that not only look and feel like native solutions but are also as functional as the last ones.
The entire code in Xamarin is written in C# making code sharing across platforms a piece of cake. This unique feature optimizes apps for other platforms and helps cut the development cycle.
2. App logic sharing
Xamarin provides a unique opportunity for sharing the underlying application logic in the UI layer, e.g., input validation, database interactions, web service calls, and back-end enterprise integrations. The coding takes place just once in universal C# and is shared across multiple platforms without the need to recode or reiterate.
Coding in C# provides an absolutely universal programming environment in which the codes and programs are absolutely compatible with other programming languages like Object-C and Java.
Developers can share 75% of code across the operating systems. It leaves less room for bugs and saves time on recoding in other programming languages.
Developers can also save up to 96% of the original code during the adaptation of C# to other platforms. This makes Xamarin an outstanding cross-platform app development tool.
3. Seamless API integration
The API and UI controls that are used by the well-known platforms for building Android and iOS apps are bound by Xamarin by means of respective platform-specific languages. In case of app development for Windows Phone, Xamarin with Microsoft Visual Studio offers a special API and UI which is native to the Windows OS.
Portable Class Libraries (PCL) and appropriate app architecture ensure that the Code can be shared between iOS, Android and Windows. The creation of the user interface is based on the implementation of the API references, which can match absolutely different resources. As a result, Xamarin and Android Studio are 100% compatible.
4. Coding with C#
C# is not just a modernized version of C++. It is a pure object-oriented programming language which allows even the simplest of data types to be treated as objects from the beginning.
C# is a modern, general-purpose language with a really simple syntax. There is no need in headers and pointers. The reference and namespace operators are also replaced by the period which makes coding in C# genuinely effortless.
It also doesn’t require boilerplate or verbose type annotations. This peculiarity prevents software developers from typographical errors which can result in flawed program behavior.
To sum it all up, C# is a brilliant programming language when it comes to cross-platform app development.
5. Community support
Programmers can find a great deal of useful Xamarin-related information on websites like Stack Overflow, blogs and community support forums. Xamarin has gathered an ever-growing community of 700,000 plus developers who collaborate and assist one another in improving software.
Xamarin University is a dedicated e-learning portal for specialists who have just started to explore the package. The university is intended for software engineers that know C# and anyone with a little programming experience.
All these advantages make digital solutions by Xamarin ideal for cross-platform development. Xamarin.iOS offers the complete iOS SDK for .NET developers while the component Xamarin.android does the same for Android SDK.
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This post is by Rahul Varshneya, the co-founder of Benchpoint. Rahul has been featured as a business technology thought leader in numerous media channels such as Bloomberg TV, Forbes, HuffPost, Inc, etc.