Xamarin Ships Mono For ‘Ice Cream Sandwich’

Xamarin has announced the release of its Mono open-source .NET development platform for Android 4.0.

Xamarin, a mobile application platform startup founded by Miguel de Icaza, Nat Friedman and Joseph Hill, today announced the availability of Mono for Android 4.0, the first release from Xamarin that allows C# developers to target Android tablet devices such as Kindle Fire, Motorola Xoom and Samsung Galaxy Tab.

New features

With this release, Xamarin provides access to all the new features introduced by Google on their Android 4.0 operating system, code-named Ice Cream Sandwich.

The new Mono release features a plug-in for Microsoft’s Visual Studio that enables .NET developers to develop applications for Android. The release also includes a new incremental build technology that reduces debugging and development cycles, the company said

“Thousands of developers depend on Xamarin to build the newest applications for mobile devices,” Miguel de Icaza, CTO of Xamarin, said in a statement. “We bring C# and .NET to Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS, but we bring it with style. We provide developers with the power of the .NET frameworks that they are used to, along with complete access to all of the native APIs and UI toolkits unique to each operating system, allowing developers to create truly unique native experiences on each operating system.”

Mono for Android complements Xamarin’s existing MonoTouch platform, which allows developers to create applications for the iPhone and iPad using C# and .NET technologies. Combined with Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 SDK, C# developers – more than 6 million worldwide – now have a unified framework and language across all three major mobile platforms: Android, iOS and Windows Phone 7, Xamarin officials said.

Xamarin’s MonoTouch and Mono for Android products enable .NET developers to use their existing code, libraries and tools, including Visual Studio, as well as skills in .NET and the C# programming language, to create mobile applications for the industry’s most widely used mobile devices running iOS and Android.

With Mono for Android 4.0, build times are 40 percent shorter while incremental deployment to devices reduces the development cycle from minutes to seconds.


“Mono for Android allows our many Fortune 500 clients to not only reuse existing C# .NET code, but also future-proof their ongoing mobile investments,” Nathan Clevenger, chief software architect for mobile consulting and development firm ITR Mobility, said in a statement. “With Mono for Android 4.0, Xamarin has introduced a new, simple installer, which takes the pain out of setting up an Android development environment, by combining all the required components into a single, unified installation experience, as opposed to the myriad of installs required for Java-based Android development.

“Our mission is to provide the world’s best mobile development experience,” Nat Friedman, chief executive of Xamarin, said in a statement. “This release demonstrates that mission. Mono for Android 4.0 is a faster and smoother way of developing mobile applications for Android.”

With this release, Xamarin has also published a set of “Getting Started” tutorials that allow developers to quickly come up to speed on Android development.

For more information and to download Mono for Android 4.0, click here.

Darryl K. Taft

Darryl K. Taft covers IBM, big data and a number of other topics for TechWeekEurope and eWeek

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