Great News For Developers: Report Claims That Microsoft May Acquire Xamarin

Xamarin Microsoft

Xamarin is a startup that is doing the job what Microsoft should have done with their .Net/C# platform. With Xamarin, you write your apps entirely in C#, sharing the same code on iOS, Android, Windows and Mac. You can reuse your favorite .NET libraries, and still easily incorporate platform-specific libraries and frameworks when you want to. Xamarin delivers high performance compiled code with full access to all the native APIs so you can create native apps with device-specific experiences. Anything you can do in Objective-C or Java, you can do in C# with Xamarin. Today, CRN reported that Microsoft is in talks to acquire Xamarin.

Microsoft is in the final stages of negotiations that could lead to either an acquisition or major investment in Xamarin, a mobile startup whose tools make it possible to code iOS and Android apps using Microsoft development tools, sources with knowledge of the discussions told CRN recently.

S. Somasegar Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Corporation said the following on Microsoft’s collabration with

“The broad collaboration between Microsoft and Xamarin is targeted at supporting developers interested in extending their applications across multiple devices. With Xamarin, developers combine all of the productivity benefits of C#, Visual Studio 2013 and Windows Azure with the flexibility to quickly build for multiple device targets.”

If the reports are true, this should be a great news for developers!

Source: CRN

  • pdouglas

    This seems like a bad idea for Microsoft, as it will lead developers away from its platforms, as it did with the web years back, which undermined Windows in the consumer market. But hey, if MS wants to do this, I will just examine this option, and see if I can make money on other platforms.

    • GogoGodzilla

      This isn’t the case at all. If anything, it’ll increase developer interest. Imagine if you’re a developer, there are a few different situations:

      1. Develop mobile in html5 with fair success, but really, it’s a crappy app.
      2. Spend resources to hire to develop in Java, Objective C, and C#. Even if you can share assets amongst projects, you’re still adding staff.
      3. Choose to develop in C#, use Xamarin to utilize all the real API’s for every OS, but only code in C#. Yes, you need to still understand how the API’s work, but that’s the easiest part of coding imho.

      Smart move by MS. They’re trying to get every developer on every platform to create in C#, so that publishing to Windows/WP is simple.

    • Nham Thien Duong

      I agree, (no offense) but what Xamarin is doing is A) very good, and B) something that Microsoft is planning on doing anyhow, and Microsoft supports practically every O.S. Apple is exclusive, and Scroogle tries to be Apple, Microsoft wants more people using their services, and though Windows was bad at the web at first, Microsoft bought almost all Dot-Com’panies (sort of pun), and integrated them into the M.S.N. (which is practically ”the old internet” no offense to people born in our decade and earlier), Microsoft needs to have A.P.I.’s that work on every platform, they develop apps for all platforms, and the worst part is that Skype for Android is better than Skype for Windows Phone, and Bing for iO.S. can easily kick Bing Mobile on Windows Phone’s arse (no offense), Microsoft buying Xamarin would be a major step forward. :-)

    • that_guy

      Well if people wanted to code for Android and IOS they dont’ need Xamarin. But if you’re a windows developer looking to make more money in other platforms, now you can. Remember Windows has a very broad audience. So any developer with the sense will not forsake Windows for Android or IOS.

      • ryan

        A broad audience except in the mobile device area which they have a few percent market share.

    • Jeff Hung

      Now Microsoft’s top priority is “reducing the number of apps which are available everywhere but Windows ecosystem”, rather than “increasing the number of Windows exclusive apps”. I believe expanding cross-platform capability of Visual Studio is a good strategy for this goal.
      The IDEs for other platforms are always there, and many of them are free. Developers can always use Xamarin to develop apps for other platform, no matter Microsoft acquires it or not.

      • pdouglas

        If MS’ objective is to get developers of other platforms to develop for Windows / Windows Phone, then it should provide extensions to the other platforms’ development systems, which enable them to easily target Windows / Windows Phone. In other words, MS should be making it easy for developers of other platforms to come over to Windows, not making it easy for Windows developers to leave Windows.

        • Jeff Hung

          Well, Microsoft is interested in Xamarin because it expands the application of C#. And every developer knows C# is best supported and facilitated in Windows platform.

          • pdouglas

            So MS will be sacrificing Windows revenue for development system revenue?

          • Jeff Hung

            I would say, this is a long term strategy to enable more custom classes written in C# and more projects managed in VS, which make developing for Windows ecosystem more like a natural outcome rather than afterthought.
            Officially, developing an iOS app requires Xcode (which also mean you need a Mac) and learning Objective-C. But since iOS ecosystem is relatively profitable, developers are willing to adapt the development system. In contrary, I don’t think Microsoft has the privilege to lock-in developers with a tightly controlled development system given the current market share and ecosystem profitability.

        • ryan

          It’s already easy to leave windows with Xamarin. That game is over. If you can get programmers to ditch Java and Obj-C for C# then you have a shot of bringing them to Windows.
          Are you suggesting MS entice Apple developers with a hideous Objective-C compiler for Windows? lol.

    • ryan

      Anyway, MS has a 3% smartphone and 2% tablet market share.
      Hardware improvements, smart pricing and competitive applications will help MS gain market share not vendor lock in.
      You can’t force people to only write for your stack when nobody is using your products. This isn’t 1999.

  • that_guy