Why You Should Use Kotlin to Develop Expressive Android Apps
Why You Should Use Kotlin to Develop Expressive Android Apps
Android apps have a huge share of the mobile market. See how using the Kotlin language will benefit you when developing your Android app.
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With around 85 percent of the market share and over 3.6 million apps, Google Play rules the mobile app realm. Every day, Android app developers are busy making user-friendly and engaging apps using Java, the official language for developing Android apps.
One of the best minds of the app development industry and the maker of AppCode, JetBrains, released Kotlin in February 2016. Ever since its launch, this advanced programming language started gaining ground among the communities of Android app developers and Java programmers alike. As a secondary official language on Android, Kotlin is very powerful and expressive.
Here are four fantastic characteristics of Kotlin that make the Android app developer’s life easy:
Conciseness: This modern programming language eliminates redundant code. It categorically reduces boilerplate code to make development easier and faster compared to other contemporary languages. As the language is concise, there are fewer chances of the wrong code.
Safety: Kotlin enables app developers to get rid of entire classes of errors, like Null Pointer Exceptions (NPEs), offering a safe and seamless development experience.
Interoperability: Developers can readily use existing libraries for the JVM (Java Virtual Machine) and Android with Kotlin, as the language is interoperable with Java as well as existing Android languages. This feature enables developers to learn this language quickly.
Tool-friendliness: Kotlin is a friendly language to Java. Developers can select any Java IDE to build an app in Kotlin. Also, Kotlin enables them to build an app from the command line.
Here is a comparison between Java and Kotlin. Kotlin is a response to Java’s limitations with a core focus on interop with Java code and libraries.
Let us go through top ten reasons to embrace Kotlin for your next Android app project:
Solves real-time issues: One of the most noteworthy benefits of Kotlin is that it solves the real-time problems faced by developers. For example, as mentioned above, NPEs keep on haunting Java developers, and Kotlin enables developers to get rid of them. Kotlin is a strong step taken in the direction of nullifying Android app development issues.
High-quality with cost-efficiency: As an open-source language, you can get high-quality development with a one-click Java to Kotlin converter tool and focus on Java compatibility. What’s more, developers can readily convert an existing Java project to Kotlin.
Easy to learn and adopt: Kotlin is a developer-friendly language and can be learned in only a few hours with the help of a language reference. Java developers can learn and utilize this language even faster as Kotlin programs can be developed by using existing Java frameworks and libraries.
No binding of a particular style: Kotlin is a highly flexible language that does not impose any particular philosophy or style of programming like, Object-Oriented Programming (OOP) styling, in which the developer has to deal with attributes and methods. Kotlin also does not enforce overly-functional philosophy.
No runtime overhead: One of the biggest headaches for developers is runtime overhead. The good thing is that Kotlin does not impose any runtime overhead with a small and tight library. Kotlin’s library consists of focused extensions in line with the Java standard library.
Enhances productivity: Kotlin permits developers to use productivity-enhancing tools. It works flawlessly with IntelliJ. Developers can refactor, search, navigate, and auto-complete code like in Java. Also, Kotlin offers full support for various development phases, like debugging, profiling, and unit testing.
Ready for enterprise Java shops: Enterprise-grade Java shops can be built by big Java codebases. Such a codebase takes a lot of time and energy from developers. Kotlin is ready to handle this issue with strong commercial support from its maker, JetBrains. Also, Kotlin can be tested for a small part of the code base without affecting the rest of the project. Kotlin enables developers to export a Java API identical to the regular Java code, as well.
Easy code reviews: Kotlin focuses on readable syntax while targeting Java 6. Therefore, even people who have no knowledge of the language can review the code. The ease of reviewing the code can save a lot of time and energy for developers, so they can pay attention to other important aspects.
Offers IDE support: Kotlin is a highly flexible language and we have many options to combine with Kotlin thanks to extensive IDE support. IntelliJ IDE works just fine with Kotlin and comes as a bundled product with Kotlin. What gives the edge to this combo is that both the language and IDE are developed by the same programmers.
Familiar Syntax: Last but not least, Kotlin is a programming language developed by industry people, not by academics. Any programmer who works on an OOP domain will find the syntax of Kotlin familiar and can start making an app straightaway after taking some basic training. However, Kotlin has some differences from Java, like reworked constructors, but Java developers can readily understand the know-how of this language.
All these aspects make Kotlin a safe and pragmatic language that can effectively address the Android app development domain’s demands while offering a pleasant app building experience.
Like Swift is for Apple, Kotlin is going to be the same for Android in the near future.
Interestingly, Java developers have started switching to Kotlin gradually because of its highly expressive and easy-to-use features, like better switch case, operator overloading, improved collections, and smart casting, which are not available in Java. Kotlin is all set to take the developer community by storm.
Published at DZone with permission of Mitesh Patel . See the original article here.
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