Kotlin: The newest cross platform mobile solution

present-boxSearch ‘cross platform mobile development tools’ and you will find a list of approximately 10 solutions, with one on the list (Codename One) allowing coding in Kotlin, although with limitations on the use of kotlin libraries.

Kotlin, new choice for cross platform native?

Now there is a new choice, Kotlin/Kotlin Native.  A combination of the officially supported Kotlin for Android together with Kotlin Native for iOS.

Kotlin is the main choice for native android development, but now developing an Android app with Kotlin opens the possibility of reusing code from the Android app in an iOS App.

Note: This is not a solution for building a completely reusable app, but for sharing all ‘business’ logic or other logic not directly calling the OS.

Further, while Android apps are developed in Intellij or Android Studio, Kotlin Native requires CLion, a different IDE.

This probably makes a single build process for both Android and iOS out of reach for now.

Why all the IDEs from Jetbrains are not also available in plugin form or standalone IDE  (the same licence price for either would be fine).  Allowing a single master IDE to run each development could even boost revenues for Jetbrains as well a convenience for developers.  Add the paid premium plugin for both Java and Python for example, rather than settling for the free Python module in Intellij to avoid needing two different IDEs?

Kotlin on CLion, the original reason for Kotlin Native?

So why have Kotlin Native with the CLion IDE, when Intellij would be a better base for Android developers looking to also use Kotlin for iOS?

Perhaps because the originally identified target market for Kotlin Native was C/C++ developers?  Consider, that placing Kotlin Native within the IDE for C developers, effectively promotes Kotlin Native to these developers.

The first target for Kotlin was Java developers, that is clear, as is the fact that it was Java Android developers who adopted the language far more readily than other Java developers, despite kotlin not being specifically marketed to this sub group of Java developers initially.

So perhaps the biggest group of Java developers who could move to Kotlin, have already made the move to Kotlin.  So what next for Kotlin to keep the momentum going? Well on Tiobe, the next major language is C/C++, logically target that developer base.   (Although I suggest it would be more relevant to consider the leading edge data which is better provided by pypl).

 

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