Cross Platform Mobile Apps with Xamarin and Azure Mobile Services

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This is the third of a four part series on building cross platform apps using Xamarin and C#. In this episode Robert is joined by James Montemagno, a developer evangelist at Xamarin, who discusses how to leverage Azure Mobile Services and Xamarin to transform an offline app to a cloud connected cross-platform mobile app. We will integrate oAuth into our application to store our data on a per user basis, all of which will be shared using the same C# code across Android, iOS, and Windows from one Portable Class Library.

If you missed parts one and two, you can view them here and here.




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    The Discussion

    • User profile image

      Great Tutorial..

    • User profile image

      Sometimes I think it would be nice, if the asynchronous CRUD operations would give us back some more information than only a task. If they would give back the saved object (as sqlite does) - this could then update the ui and make synchronization a lot easier.

    • User profile image

      Nice. But why not use MvvmCross?

    • User profile image

      @Mattias, you can absolutely use MvvmCross. For this series I just focused on the core out of the box experience when creating apps in C# with Xamarin. I have a log of MvvmCross examples on my GitHub as well.

    • User profile image

      With enterprise development you will often need to develop your services layer in-house, which is why Azure Mobile with a .NET backend is so important because you can run you Azure Mobile Services locally, and build / test you services layer in tandem with your mobile client.

      However, running the Azure Mobile service locally only works well for Windows Phone / Store development where your emulator can easily access the local IIS express instance of your service.

      If you are using Xamarin Studio on a mac (of course, because your building IOS and Android apps and are not willing to pay the skyscraper prices for visual studio integration)), then you need to jump through a long list of huge hoops to get the IPhone and Android emulators to talk to the IIS Express instance inside a VM. Although Azure Mobile projects end up deployed on full IIS in the cloud, these projects wont work with standard IIS locally (as confirmed to me by a member of the azure mobile team at Microsoft), so IIS express (with all its limitations) is the only option.

      Can I please encourage Microsoft to consider other (vastly more popular) mobile platforms, and not remain blinkered within a world where only Microsoft technology exists.

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