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Essential Tools for Xamarin App Development

DZone's Guide to

Essential Tools for Xamarin App Development

Learn about the IDEs and other developer tools that support Xamarin app development.

· Mobile Zone ·
Free Resource

Are you fascinated by the increasing popularity of Xamarin? Xamarin has proved to be the most popular cross-platform app development framework among the developers.

You can develop Android, iOS and Windows based applications using C# and Visual Studio where code sharing is facilitated between Android and iOS apps to further compile them into a native code.

Xamarin-based applications have always proved best to involve native UI, native performance along with accessing to specific device features.

If you are a new Xamarin developer, then you should proceed with a ‘get started’ guide with gathering all the information you need to have in your journey. I will also suggest you about what tools proficient Xamarin developers use to efficiently go with Xamarin app development and accomplish success in their projects.

Xamarin-Supported IDEs

Visual Studio

Visual Studio is a modern and sophisticated IDE by Microsoft which facilitates a variety of features to create mobile and web applications. It supports mobile app development with .NET-based Android, iOS, tvOS, and watchOS apps, Mac desktop apps, ASP.NET Core web applications, .NET Core applications, and cross-platform Unity games.

It is comprised of a rich editor, debugging, native platform integration with Mac, iOS, and Android, and integrated source control, to name just a few of its many features.

From May 10th, 2017, Xamarin Studio was replaced totally by Visual Studio, including all of its features, cloud, and web application development. It also contains improvements for cross-platform mobile development.

XCode

Apple's XCode IDE is a core part of the iOS app development experience. It provides an extremely productive environment to build different a variety of apps to run on Mac, iPad, iPhone, Apple Watch, and Apple TV.

You can accomplish iPhone app development with Xamarin on Visual Studio running on a Windows machine. However, a Mac computer should essentially be accessible on the network at the same time, acting as a build host for remote compilation and debugging.

Xamarin Development Tools

NuGet

For any modern app development platform, NuGet seems to be an essential tool. The mechanism it provides helps developers to create, share, and consume useful code. Such code is often bundled into packages containing compiled code as DLLs with other content required to consume these packages.

A central repository of more than 100,000 unique packages is maintained by NuGet at nuget.org and millions of .NET developers employ these packages every day. It also enables developers to host packages privately in the cloud, on a private network, or even just on your local file system.

Xamarin Inspector

This interactive C# console brings Xamarin Workbooks and Inspector to users. The Inspector tool integrates with your IDE's app debugging workflow; serving as a diagnostic or debugging aid when your running app is inspected.

Prism

The Prism framework is used for building maintainable, testable, and loosely-coupled XAML applications in WPF, Windows 10UWP, and Xamarin Forms. This framework provides an implementation of design collection patterns that help with writing maintainable and well-structured XAML applications, including dependency injection, MVVM, EventAggregator, commands, etc.

The core functionality of the Prism framework is a shared code base in a Portable Class Library targeting such platforms. Platform-specific things are implemented in the respective libraries for the target platform. Prism also integrates these patterns with the target platform.

MFractor

MFractor comprises XAML IntelliSense, hundreds of XAML inspections and refactorings, image tooling, etc. to make for more simplified Xamarin app development. It also offers an enhanced XAML editor that supercharges Xamarin.Forms development along with helping you find code issues instantly and fix them quickly.

The missing essentials are added by MFractor, like an image importing wizard, localization assistance, and dozens of shortcuts related to mobile-specific navigation, and they can be fully customized to meet the needs of your project with code snippet support and a rich configuration engine.

Resharper

A Visual Studio Extension, ReSharper for .NET developers provides you with on-the-fly code quality analysis available for VB.NET, ASP.NET, C#, XAML, ASP.NET MVC, TypeScript, JavaScript, CSS, HTML, and XML. You will know exactly where your code requires to be improved.

ReSharper not only informs you when there is a problem with your code, but also helps in fixing those problems automatically. The majority of cases lead you to choose the best quick fix from a variety of options available.

Design Tools

InVision

It is known as the world’s leading product design collaboration platform. Here, you can upload your design files, add gestures, animations and transitions for transforming your static screens into clickable screens, and interactive prototypes. Then you can create the context around your projects with boards comprised of flexible spaces to store, share, and talk about design ideas.

This tool also lets you simplify your feedback process by getting comments directly on your designs and let you see all the new feedback for your projects in a convenient place.

Sketch

A vector-based design tool for Mac, Sketch focuses on screen designs. This tool is primarily used by designers for creating websites, icons, and user interfaces for mobile and desktop devices. Sketch is a powerful and easy to use tool for big or smaller enterprises to focus on the design factor.

Balsamiq

Balsamiq helps designers work faster and smarter — the experience of sketching is reproduced on a whiteboard using a computer. When the wireframe process is faster, you can get more ideas generated so as to throw out the bad ones and discover the best ones. The elements can be dragged, dropped, resized, and rearranged.

Adobe XD

If you want to go from concept to prototype faster with a sole UX/UI solution to design mobile apps and websites, Adobe XD can be used. It was created to meet the requirements of today’s UI and UX designers and allows developers to use time-saving features like flexible artboards and Repeat Grid.

Apart from the above tools, there are also some unit testing and beta testing tools for effective Xamarin app development that you can check out.

Topics:
mobile ,cross platform development ,xamarin ,tutorial

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