In this course—the second in the Mastering Xamarin.Forms Development series—learn how to work with the controls built into Xamarin.Forms, and how to use plugins to add cross-platform functionality.
- [Scott] Back in the day, before the concepts of drag and drop controls and widgets, every element of a user interface was simply text, or a line. Or if you got really fancy, maybe even a rectangle border. And although the use of finely tuned, task-specific controls is now ubiquitous, the way a user expects to see and interact with a control, still varies from platform to platform. Typically requiring multiple versions of your code, to perform this same simple process. The magic of Xamarin Forms removes this need. Making it simple to create an experience, with a single shared set of controls.
Rendered exactly how a user expects, regardless of their device or platform. I'm Scott J. Peterson, and this is Mastering Xamarin Forms Development, Basic Controls and Plugins. Just like when we're using pages and layouts in Xamarin forms, Xamarin controls are not interpreted. Xamarin Forms understands and renders native controls for each target platform. The Xamarin Forms engine maps controls to platform-specific native user interface elements at run time.
For example, we may be using a label control in Xamarin Forms. And a label control would get rendered as a UI label on iOS. A text view on Android. Or as a text block in the UWP app. This is an extremely important aspect of Xamarin forms. The resulting control rendering, creates a purely native experience, across all platforms. So that being said, let's take a look at what we're going to cover in this session. First we're going to' review basic UI concepts.
More specifically, basic Xamarin Forms UI concepts. We're going to' talk about this idea of control groups. And I'm going to' be throwing the term control out, quite a bit. I'm also making the assumption that you're at least vaguely familiar with Windows development, since most C# developers are familiar with Windows development. Even if it's legacy development like Asp.net, WinForms, or WPF. We're going to' talk about two terms that often have a lot of confusion around them. This idea of a view and a cell. So controls in Xamarin Forms are really view controls, or cell controls.
And there's some variations of that. But in general, they're view controls or cell controls. And now we're going to' go into our Xamarin Forms paperboy app that we're building in this series. And actually implement some view and cell controls to create a settings page. Then we're going to' hop into two similar, but different concepts. The concept of a list view, and the concept of a table view. And update our Xamarin Forms paperboy app to use list view and table view controls to render lists and settings tables. And then finally, we're going to' take a look at one of the coolest concepts in Xamarin Forms, especially when it comes to cross-platform extensibility, and that's this concept of plugins.
We're going to' add some of the more common useful Xamarin Forms plugins into our solution. And take a look at how that could quickly enhance the re-usability and shared code aspect of our paperboy app. And as always, we'll finish up with some great next steps.
- Basic UI concepts in Xamarin.Forms
- Control groups
- Incorporating view and cell controls in an app
- ListView controls
- TableView controls
- Integrating plugins