Over the last few years, Microsoft has developed an excellent Integrated Development Environment in Visual Studio. One of the gaps we identified in that toolset was around the mobile space. To address that need, Microsoft acquired the mobile development company, Xamarin, allowing us to offer a fully-featured IDE for Android, iOS, Windows, web, and cloud. The focus of the cloud application development community in December is Xamarin. In this post, I’ll talk about the major components of Xamarin and explain the importance of Xamarin to Microsoft partners as well as point out the resources that will help you get started with Xamarin. Sign up for the December 6 community call for a deeper discussion.
Introduction to Xamarin
Xamarin is an end-to-end mobile development environment for building, testing, and deploying applications across the major mobile environments. We’re excited to have Xamarin partners join the Microsoft partner ecosystem, including those partners that work with open source tools and services. If you haven’t seen the latest announcements about the Microsoft commitment to open source, last week during the Connect(); 2016 developer event we announced joining The Linux Foundation, adding to recent announcements like our partnership with Red Hat, the open source friendly Azure Container Service, PowerShell open source, and SQL Server on Linux. Read the blog post by Microsoft Corporate Vice President Steve Guggenheimer about our commitment to open source, and check out the Microsoft + Open Source website to learn more about our involvement.
Xamarin Platform is the base for the cross-platform development experience. Anything that can be done in Swift, Objective C, or Java can be done in C#. Xamarin takes advantage of this to reduce the amount of application specific code that needs to be written. Xamarin platform can be used as a standalone IDE on both Windows and Mac or integrated with Visual Studio on Windows.
Xamarin Test Cloud
Testing can be a challenge with mobile development. There are so many devices and flavors of operating system that an application needs to be tested on, and using manual testing for every change is just not feasible. With Xamarin Test Cloud, developers can test their application across thousands of physical devices at once. This automated testing allows developers to find bugs and edge cases before the application even ships. Xamarin Test Cloud incudes detailed reporting that includes screenshots and performance metrics of testing.
Xamarin Insights + HockeyApp
Telemetry data is critical to delivering a successful application and development through Xamarin is no different. Xamarin Insights will be combined HockeyApp, to deliver best in class information back to developers. Developers taking advantage of insights integration with Hockey App will be provided with user metric and crash reporting data that allow for rapid troubleshooting and patching. The crash reporting data integrates into a host of bug management systems that allow you to maintain the workflow you are currently using.
The Xamarin tools fit directly into the build-test-deploy workflow that is further empowered through integration with DevOps tooling, providing a complete mobile DevOps solution. Together, these tools empower developers to bring applications to market faster, and be more responsive. Earlier this year, we focused on DevOps in the cloud Application Development Partner Community through a series of blog posts and a community call.
Getting started with Xamarin
Xamarin University offers live, interactive, online classes with experts and self-guided learning resources. Upon completion of Xamarin University, you earn the Xamarin Certified Mobile Developer designation, which lets you demonstrate your expertise in practical cross-platform mobile development.
Internal use rights
Xamarin capabilities are included with the internal use rights that partners receive with a Microsoft Action Pack subscription or a Microsoft competency.
Application Development Partner Community
- Sign up for community calls
- Join the Yammer group
- Blog series
- Training and enablement
- Video playlist