Thursday, March 31, 2016

Xamarin now free in Visual Studio

(credit: Nic Wise)

SAN FRANCISCO—Microsoft bought Xamarin, the popular C#-and-.NET-on-iOS-and-Android, last month. At its Build developer conference today, the company announced the first big step for its new acquisition: Xamarin is now included in every Visual Studio version.

This announcement means that every Visual Studio, from the free Community edition right up to the Enterprise edition, now has access to the Xamarin tooling so that developers can build applications for Android and iOS (though iOS development continues to need access to an OS X machine) using the .NET and C# tools they love.

There are no restrictions to this inclusion, either. As an independent company, Xamarin did have a free version to give developers a taste of what it offered, but the product was historically restricted to only support small executables, with anything larger requiring a paid license. That's not the case today; even Visual Studio 2015 Community has no size or other restrictions. Some enterprise-oriented Xamarin features are still restricted, and developers will need a Visual Studio Enterprise subscription to use these.

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