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Xamarin SDK Is Now Open Source!

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Jason Bott
ByPor Jason Bott

Jason has been working as a consultant and project manager with enterprises of all sizes for over 20 years. His expertise lies in utilizing technology to solve problems that reduce costs and increase profits. He has been instrumental in implementing successful software projects for Shell, NOV, C&J, Nabors, Total, Halliburton, Baker Hughes, Noble, American Tower, AIG, NASA, Nike as well as many smaller firms.

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In a huge step forward for the community of small business technology, Microsoft will now be open-sourcing the popular software development kit. Xamarin officials made the exciting announcement at the recent Evolve developer’s conference, and downloads are already available at www.xamarin.com. The decision was made to make Mono a part of the .NET Foundation, which is a forum that encourages collaboration and innovation amongst developers through open source software.

Now a part of this movement, Xamarin’s software development kit (SDK) allows companies to build, test, and monitor cloud-based custom applications in C# and F#. This makes it an especially powerful tool for small businesses, and having the SDK available open source will undoubtedly lead to more companies taking advantage of the technology as well as producing higher overall quality apps.

This is an exciting development, coming just a few short months after Microsoft’s acquisition of Xamarin in February. With the SDK now available for iOS, Android, and Mac interfaces, Xamarin users have at their fingertips the means of designing custom applications to make their businesses more accessible to clients on the go. Microsoft is even working with Xamarin to resolve interface obstacles between Mac and Visual Studio, which will translate into smoother app and web design processes. With a connection between Mac and Visual Studio, developers will be able to create iOS apps in C#, which was not possible before.

So what does open sourcing mean for your business? One huge benefit is the improvement of Mono and Xamarin themselves as developers around the world report issues and write new tools and tests. Additionally, you now have access to a variety of libraries and plug-ins that have already been designed, such as Facebook, Google Play, and other messaging platforms. Then, of course, there’s the obvious – this is all available to you at no extra cost!

Open-sourcing and cross-platform connections weren’t the only good news to come out of the Evolve conference; new Xamarin.Forms features were unveiled as well. With the system improvements and inclusion in Visual Studio releases, Xamarin has truly been positioned as an industry leader in open source app development.

These custom apps are more desirable than ever as smaller companies seek to engage customers and increase ease of use to stay competitive with larger corporations. Has your business used Xamarin for your cloud-based custom application? Share your experience in the comments!