Mac Should I use Xcode or Eclipse for Android development?

Should I use Xcode or Eclipse?

  • Xcode.

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Eclipse.

    Votes: 3 100.0%

  • Total voters
    3
  • Poll closed .

moonman239

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Mar 27, 2009
1,524
22
I am an iOS app developer who wants to start creating Android apps. I have a programming book from Big Nerd Ranch that tells me to download Eclipse, but should I just use Xcode?
 

CarreraGuy

macrumors regular
Jan 15, 2013
148
0
I've been using Eclipse for 6+ years... It was buggy as hell in the early days, then it went through its stages of bloatiness, but with 4.3 it has settled down.

Saying all that Android development environment is fairly open: you can use VI, or even emacs as an editor - if you like pain and torture. And you can build everything from the command line.

If you plan on using Eclipse for other projects in other languages such as Python, Java, C/C++ I suggest installing the latest 4.3 and adding the Android plugin after that (plugins is an Eclipse term and are the extendible modules users install, and there are a lot) .

I am not sure if you download the bundle provided you will get the latest and greatest Eclipse core (which I think is at 4.3.1), so just something to check out and verify and be aware of.
 

ScoobyMcDoo

macrumors 65816
Nov 26, 2007
1,188
35
Austin, TX
I tried to use xcode for cross-platform development (linux) some time ago and found that is was intended only for writing software targeted for OSX or iOS and did not play well with others.

I use a combination of netbeans and eclipse for my development - both work great for cross platform.
 

ArtOfWarfare

macrumors G3
Nov 26, 2007
8,661
4,200
Google has an official IDE for Android... as I recall it's called Android Studio. I'd suggest using that. Last I checked (several months ago) it was still in beta.

Here's the page for it, looks like it's still in beta, but I'd probably use it anyways just because Eclipse is such a lousy IDE:

https://developer.android.com/sdk/installing/studio.html

I definitely wouldn't use Xcode. The plugin architecture for Xcode 4/5 is undocumented*, so I doubt anyone has written the necessary tools to make Xcode a viable IDE for Android development.

*though it does exist - I played around with making a plugin almost a year ago for Xcode. It was able to load web pages in Xcode... not terribly useful. I had more plans for it but then I got busy and forgot about it.
 

larswik

macrumors 68000
Sep 8, 2006
1,552
11
I had a question about this subject. Do you need to pay any kind of fee so anyone to test Android apps on Android devices like Apple with it's $99 developer fee?
 

lee1210

macrumors 68040
Jan 10, 2005
3,182
1
Dallas, TX
I had a question about this subject. Do you need to pay any kind of fee so anyone to test Android apps on Android devices like Apple with it's $99 developer fee?
No. You have to pay to publish in the Play store. It's fairly nominal to do so, like Apple. You can get all the tools to start developing for free, though.
 

larswik

macrumors 68000
Sep 8, 2006
1,552
11
Thanks Lee, I took that Java class a couple years ago and thought of trying out some Android versions of my apps. I just don't want to have another phone account. I guess they come with a simulator as well.

Thanks!
 

Stella

macrumors G3
Apr 21, 2003
8,391
4,951
Canada
I had a question about this subject. Do you need to pay any kind of fee so anyone to test Android apps on Android devices like Apple with it's $99 developer fee?
You are free to load your own apps on Android. No fee for using your own apps on your own device.
 

ArtOfWarfare

macrumors G3
Nov 26, 2007
8,661
4,200
Thanks Lee, I took that Java class a couple years ago and thought of trying out some Android versions of my apps. I just don't want to have another phone account. I guess they come with a simulator as well.

Thanks!
If your application has a GUI, you'll likely need to change it... I imagine you used Swing as your GUI framework, which last I checked wasn't available for Android.
 

larswik

macrumors 68000
Sep 8, 2006
1,552
11
If your application has a GUI, you'll likely need to change it... I imagine you used Swing as your GUI framework, which last I checked wasn't available for Android.
It was a couple years ago and I have done nothing with Java since. So I will be relearning things again. I am wondering what kind of device I can get to test it with. I don't need a second phone. Perhaps a small tablet or something like that?

Thanks.
 

ArtOfWarfare

macrumors G3
Nov 26, 2007
8,661
4,200
It was a couple years ago and I have done nothing with Java since. So I will be relearning things again. I am wondering what kind of device I can get to test it with. I don't need a second phone. Perhaps a small tablet or something like that?

Thanks.
Just use the simulator. Why waste money on a piece of junk? Wait, why are you even wasting time on Android development? I did it because the company I was working for thought it would be worth their time to have a both an iOS and Android version of their product - since then they've laid off half the company (the layoffs occurred after I left of my own will.)

Oh, and because nobody else mentioned it:

The Official IDE for Android Development is Android Studio. Google made it.

The latest builds can be found here: http://tools.android.com/download/studio

Using anything else is like using something other than Xcode for developing iOS apps.
 
Last edited:

larswik

macrumors 68000
Sep 8, 2006
1,552
11
Wait, why are you even wasting time on Android development?
I have a small visitors TV show that runs in hotels where I am from. I created a iPhone app to highlight and give more info on the business that advertise on my show and highlight the area. These days it's a mixed bag of ios and Android. I have had enough people ask me if there is a version for the Android phone.
 

ArtOfWarfare

macrumors G3
Nov 26, 2007
8,661
4,200
I have a small visitors TV show that runs in hotels where I am from. I created a iPhone app to highlight and give more info on the business that advertise on my show and highlight the area. These days it's a mixed bag of ios and Android. I have had enough people ask me if there is a version for the Android phone.
Maybe just make a web version? Do you charge for the app or is it complimentary?
 

larswik

macrumors 68000
Sep 8, 2006
1,552
11
Maybe just make a web version? Do you charge for the app or is it complimentary?
It is free. I considered a web version like your talking about to make it more universal. But this also give me a chance to start to learn more Java and the android device.
 

Stella

macrumors G3
Apr 21, 2003
8,391
4,951
Canada
Just use the simulator. Why waste money on a piece of junk? Wait, why are you even wasting time on Android development? I did it because the company I was working for thought it would be worth their time to have a both an iOS and Android version of their product - since then they've laid off half the company (the layoffs occurred after I left of my own will.)

Oh, and because nobody else mentioned it:

The Official IDE for Android Development is Android Studio. Google made it.

The latest builds can be found here: http://tools.android.com/download/studio

Using anything else is like using something other than Xcode for developing iOS apps.
Actual most of it is Jetbrains - based upon IntelliJ. And some one did reference it - artofwarefare.

I second IntelliJ. It's almost as good as Xcode and it is 100x better than Eclipse.
IntelliJ, feature per feature pisses rings around XCode. Xcode is not a good IDE for writing code. Not to mention vastly more stable than Xcode.
 
Last edited:

ArtOfWarfare

macrumors G3
Nov 26, 2007
8,661
4,200
Care to elaborate?
I agree that Xcode is a poor editor, especially when it comes to automatically inserting braces and parenthesis.

When I type [, it should instantly type ] and put my cursor in the middle. It should do the same with (, {, ", ', and <. Most other editors do this - Xcode doesn't. Sometimes it'll automatically enter opening braces if you neglected it earlier and you type a close brace, but it'll stick it in the wrong spot most of the time (ie, before a method name, where it'll never be valid.)

Actual most of it is Jetbrains - based upon IntelliJ. And some one did reference it - artofwarefare.
Right - I mentioned it twice. I gave it extra emphasis the second time because it's clearly the correct answer, but no one else is saying it.
 
Last edited:

Stella

macrumors G3
Apr 21, 2003
8,391
4,951
Canada
Care to elaborate?
Here's a few features that stand out for Intellij:

* intentions - while offering the same kind of XCode's "fix it" feature, goes beyond what XCode offers, i.e., large set of various code generation features.

* Better refactoring tools.

* Support for more type of source control

* Optimize imports ( remove redundant imports that aren't required in the file )

* Automatic imports - add necessary import file for the object being used

* Excellent support for HTML, CSS and Javascript for working on web apps.

Overall, offers far greater and richer tools for writing code.

If you want to write ObjectiveC, there's AppCode, which is based upon the IntelliJ platform, which will do nice things such as adding [ ] for you.
 
Last edited:

mpick92

macrumors newbie
Sep 9, 2010
17
16
Having done Android programming in course work and during an internship last summer, I highly recommend using Intellij CE for development (and eventually Android Studio once it is out of beta, it is essentially the same product). The entire IDE is more polished than Eclipse. Everyone has their own preferences, and this is what I like the most. Even consider using Genymotion for running an emulator if you find the stock emulator is too laggy and slow to start up. Good luck!
 

dejo

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 2, 2004
15,981
450
The Centennial State
I agree that Xcode is a poor editor, especially when it comes to automatically inserting braces and parenthesis.

When I type [, it should instantly type ] and put my cursor in the middle. It should do the same with (, {, ", ', and <. Most other editors do this - Xcode doesn't. Sometimes it'll automatically enter opening braces if you neglected it earlier and you type a close brace, but it'll stick it in the wrong spot most of the time (ie, before a method name, where it'll never be valid.)
You should probably check your Preferences > Text Editing. There's a bunch of Code Completion settings that handle of bunch of these things. You won't get an automatic ] when you type a [, but if you type [ and then start typing something you want to call, it'll "auto-suggest" the closing ].
 

ArtOfWarfare

macrumors G3
Nov 26, 2007
8,661
4,200
You should probably check your Preferences > Text Editing. There's a bunch of Code Completion settings that handle of bunch of these things. You won't get an automatic ] when you type a [, but if you type [ and then start typing something you want to call, it'll "auto-suggest" the closing ].
The auto-suggestions are laughably garbage. My experience is that Xcode often neglects obvious autocompletitions, and its few autocompletions it does are just wrong.
 

dejo

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 2, 2004
15,981
450
The Centennial State
The auto-suggestions are laughably garbage. My experience is that Xcode often neglects obvious autocompletitions, and its few autocompletions it does are just wrong.
Are you saying you don't get code-completion suggestions for closing brackets ( ] ) or automatically inserted closing braces ( } ), if you have those options enabled? If not, you should be filing bug reports with Apple.

I find the auto-completion also works fine with things like:
Code:
@"string[COLOR="Gray"]"[/COLOR]

'x[COLOR="Gray"]'[/COLOR]

(x + y[COLOR="Gray"])[/COLOR]
 
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