Xamarin.Android Designer

This article describes the features of the Xamarin.Android Designer. It explains designer basics, demonstrating how to use the Designer to lay out widgets visually and edit properties. It also illustrates how to use the Designer to work with user interfaces and resources across various configurations, such as themes, languages, and device configurations, as well as how to design for alternative views such as landscape and portrait.

Overview

Xamarin.Android supports both a declarative style of user interface design based in XML files, as well as programmatic user interface creation in code. When using the declarative approach, XML files can be either hand-edited or modified visually by using the Xamarin.Android Designer. Use of a designer allows immediate feedback during UI creation, speeds up development, and makes the process of UI creation less laborious.

This article surveys the many features of the Xamarin.Android Designer. It explains the following:

  1. The basics of using the Designer.
  2. The various parts that make up the Designer.
  3. How to load an Android layout into the Designer.
  4. How to add widgets.
  5. How to edit properties.
  6. How to work with various resources and device configurations.
  7. How to modify a user interface for alternative views such as landscape and portrait.
  8. How to handle conflicts that may arise when working with alternative views.
  9. How to use Material Design tools to build Material Design-compliant apps.

Sections

Using the Android Designer

Designer Basics

Resource Qualifiers and Visualization Options

Alternative Layout Views

Material Design Features

Summary

This article discussed the feature set of the Xamarin.Android Designer. It showed how to get started with the Designer, and explained its various parts. It described how to load a layout, as well as how to add and modify widgets, by using both the Designer Surface as well as the Source view. It also explained how to work with various resources and device configurations. Finally, it examined how to use the Designer to develop user interfaces that are built specifically for alternative views, such as landscape and portrait, as well as how to resolve conflicts that may arise between such views.