Cross-Platform User Interfaces with Xamarin.Forms
Xamarin.Forms is a cross-platform natively backed UI toolkit abstraction that allows developers to easily create user interfaces that can be shared across Android, iOS, and Windows Phone. The user interfaces are rendered using the native controls of the target platform, allowing Xamarin.Forms applications to retain the appropriate look and feel for each platform.
The preview edition of Charles Petzold's upcoming book Creating Mobile Apps with Xamarin.Forms is available as a free download to help you get started with Xamarin.Forms!
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The documents in this section discuss cross-platform application development using Xamarin.Forms.
Custom Renders let developers 'override' the default rendering of Xamarin.Forms controls to customize their appearance and behavior on each platform (using native SDKs if desired).
The DependencyService provides a simple locator so that you can code to Interfaces in your shared code and provide platform-specific implementations that are automatically resolved, making it easy to reference platform-specific functionality in Xamarin.Forms.
MessagingCenter enables view models and other components to communicate with without having to know anything about each other besides a simple Message contract.
The built-in .NET localization framework can be used to build cross-platform multilingual applications with Xamarin.Forms.
Xamarin Test Cloud's UITest component can be used with Xamarin.Forms to write UI tests to run in the cloud on hundreds of devices.
XAML—the eXtensible Application Markup Language—allows developers to define user interfaces in Xamarin.Forms applications using markup rather than code. XAML is never required in a Xamarin.Forms program but it is often more succinct than equivalent code, more visually coherent, and potentially toolable. XAML is particularly well suited for use with the popular MVVM (Model-View-ViewModel) application architecture: XAML defines the View that is linked to ViewModel code through XAML-based data bindings.