Xamarin Now Available in Microsoft Visual Studio

By CIOReview | Monday, April 4, 2016
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FREMONT, CA: According to a recent announcement from Microsoft, every Visual Studio user will now be able to use solutions from Xamarin, a firm establishing new standard for enterprise mobile development and quality. All editions of Visual Studio, including the free Visual Studio Community Edition, Visual Studio Professional, and Visual Studio Enterprise will be made freely accessible, as apprehended from the announcement.

Rumors regarding a supposed deal between Microsoft and Xamarin have been doing the rounds for quite a long time, but only in the last month was the deal actually set in motion with Microsoft’s acquisition of Xamarin. Microsoft has been collaborating with Xamarin over the years, leveraging their tools which are custom-built to work with Microsoft’s Visual Studio, Azure, Office 365, and so on.

The significant aspect about the agreement is that Xamarin’s enterprise capabilities will be accessible by Visual Studio Enterprise subscribers. In addition, Xamarin Studio for OS X has been made available for free as a community edition. The company’s plan in the upcoming month spans around open-sourcing Xamarin’s SDK, including its runtime, libraries, and command line tools, as a part of the .NET Foundation. This will further ensure availability of Xamarin SDK and Mono under the MIT License.

Microsoft’s Co-founder Miguel de Icaza took the stage at Microsoft’s Build 2016 developer conference to demo how the tools can be used for coding iOS and Android apps in Visual Studio. He demonstrated the functioning of Mac in running the iOS simulator, controlled remotely using Windows. He also used an Android app running in the Android emulator; and leveraged the Xamarin inspector to inspect and execute the code live in the emulator.

Xamarin established itself as a brand by bringing .NET to Android and iOS developers, but the company’s focus gradually shifted to provide cross-platform mobile development tools. The acquisition will assist developers, and this integration is expected to gradually diminish the differences between Visual Studio and Xamarin.

Original News Headline: Microsoft integrates Xamarin into Visual Studio for free, will open source Xamarin runtime.