Kotlin is now the preferred language for Android developers


Yesterday en the first day of l2019 edition of the Google I / O conference dedicated to developers, Google took the opportunity to make the announcement that the Kotlin programming language is now the preferred language for Android application developers.

Kotlin is a functional, object-oriented programming language, with static writing that allows you to compile for the Java virtual machine and JavaScript. It is developed by a team of programmers at JetBrains, the editor of IntelliJ IDEA, the integrated development environment for Java and on which Android Studio, the official IDE for developing Android applications, is based.

For those who follow or already use it, its latest update (Kotlin 1.3.30), was released last month, including enhancements to Kotlin / Native which uses LLVM to compile Kotlin sources to separate binary data (no machines required virtual) for different operating systems and CPU architectures, including iOS. Linux, Windows, Mac and even WebAssembly and embedded systems like STM32.

Kotlin's official support for Android development has been announced at the Google I / O 2017 conference.

Kotlin for Android development

For Google Android team, this decision to support Kotlin was easy to explain.

EDI Support for Kotlin: Android Studio is built on JetBrains IntelliJ IDEA and the JetBrains team has been working for years to ensure that Kotlin works seamlessly with IntelliJ IDEA.

Google will inherit all its work to support Kotlin in Android Studio. But beyond this aspect, Kotlin has many other advantages.

According to Google:

"Kotlin is expressive, concise, extensible, powerful, and enjoyable to read and write, and has interesting security features in terms of nullability and immutability" that align with Your investments in making applications secure and efficient by default.

"Android development will increasingly be on Kotlin," Google wrote in a blog post.

“Many new APIs and Jetpack features will be available for Kotlin first. If you start a new project, you should write it in Kotlin, "says Google explaining that" code written in Kotlin often means a lot less code to you, less code to write, test, and maintain. «

According to Google, the most important thing is that Kotlin is interoperable with the official languages for Android development (Java, C ++) and Android runtime.

Android Studio Logo

E.g., the company explained that Kotlin works seamlessly with the Java language, making it easier for developers who like the Java language to continue using it, but also gradually add Kotlin code and take advantage of Kotlin libraries.

Moreover, Kotlin adoption on Android increased steadily over the years And according to Google, with growing enthusiasm among developers, one of the reasons the company wanted to introduce Kotlin as the official language on Android to provide them with better Kotlin support. What was done since Android Studio 3.0.

Official Kotlin support has contributed to the growing adoption of the language in the Android development world, to the point where some predicted that the JetBrains language would quickly dethrone Java.

In any case, this possibility should not be ruled out, because According to Google, "more than 50% of professional Android developers now use Kotlin."

In partnership with JetBrains and the Kotlin Foundation, Google continues to invest in Kotlin tools for Android, as evidenced by the early release of Android KTX in 2018, a set of extensions for Android development with Kotlin.

They also invest in documentation, training and events to facilitate learning the JetBrains language and therefore its adoption.

This announcement from Google is not a surprise, especially as Google seeks to distance itself from Java as the company is attacked in court by Oracle for illegal use of Java APIs on Android.

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