To make it easy for developers to get started with Apache Cordova, Visual Studio 2015 automates the installation of the many Cordova dependencies, such as the Android SDK and the Java SDK. Building apps is fast, with nearly 100% of your code shared across all platforms. Cordova plugins, which are easily installed and managed within Visual Studio, provide access to a wide range of native platform capabilities.
As applications become more complex, you need more than just a text editor. You need a code editor optimized for refactoring, auto-completion and code comprehension. Visual Studio provides all that and more, including:
- Syntax highlighting to help you visually identify errors
- IntelliSense to help you better understand and code against new APIs
- Code peek for in-line reference review
Whether you’re targeting iOS, Android or Windows, Visual Studio provides preview support for a wide variety of emulators and tethered devices. You can even deploy and debug emulators hosted on a remote or virtual machine (e.g. Parallels).
For developers working in an exclusively Windows-based work environment, Visual Studio offers the ability to build for Mac OS remotely via services like MacInCloud.
Anywhere your code runs, Visual Studio can debug it – whether your code is running on an iOS, Android or Windows device, an emulator or simulator, or a browser-based debug target like Ripple. There's no need to switch tools when you build for a different platform. Visual Studio connects to almost any deploy target.
Visual Studio’s debugger lets you step through code with breakpoints and automatic exception notifications that expose the run-time state of objects and variables. Advanced features like edit-and-continue, conditional breakpoints, tracepoints and hit counts provide the kind of deep analysis you need to make coding enjoyable and not a merciless game of “find the bug.”
Cordova projects in Visual Studio synchronize with changes made to your project folder on-disk. Changes can flow in and out of Visual Studio whether you’re working with third-party tools or on other operating systems. (The default file structure for Cordova projects is based on the structure expected by the Apache Cordova command-line tools, which makes it easier to work directly with the Apache Cordova CLI or other tools that expect that folder structure.)
Visual Studio and Azure provide the tools and services necessary to deliver a personalized experience across all your devices – phones, tablets, desktops, TVs, and “things” running iOS, Android, and Windows.
With just a few lines of code, you can:
- Use push notifications to connect with specific users or entire audiences
- Enable real-time messaging to spark conversation and sharing among your users
- Support offline capabilities for those times when a network connection isn’t available
- Manage Exchange data using Office 365 Service APIs to share and edit calendars, contacts, files and more
Most importantly, you have the backing of Azure to scale to millions of devices on-demand.