With people desiring native experience with mobile applications, Android app development with Kotlin is in hot demand in 2021.
Yes, iOS apps are also equally important, as it is the second most popular mobile platform worldwide.
But, take note that android is the driving force behind over two thirds of the smartphones in use globally.
This has been already a few years, since Kotlin emerged as the most viable alternative to Java, for programmers to build Android apps.
From Google search to the noise in the tech community, everywhere Kotlin seems to gain a lot of attention.
It has become a popular language just within a few years of its introduction.
Moreover, the official Google support played a major role in drawing the focus of the Android developer community towards Kotlin language.
Consequently, with the backing of big guns in technology, mobile developers are gradually embracing Kotlin warmly.
In the decade of 2020, Kotlin is a hot trend for mobile app development, due to its rendering of perfect native experience for android apps.
In spite of the clamor around this new Java alternative, many Android developers are still confused about making the choice, and shifting their leanings to Kotlin.
For them, we are going to explain some of the key advantages that Kotlin offers for Android developers.
But not everything about Kotlin is great, and there are few drawbacks of the language as well.
Firstly, we start by taking note of the pros and cons of Kotlin language.
Pros of Kotlin
Most importantly, these are some advantages that Kotlin offers.
- Being easy to use, Kotlin boosts productivity. The majority of the available IDEs in the present market support Kotlin code. This also helps improve efficiency as developers don’t need to learn new IDEs for Android projects.
- Kotlin offers great interoperability with Java. This allows developers to switch to Java from Kotlin or vice versa extremely easier. Kotlin offers great consistency with Java and all Java-based frameworks and tools used by Android developers.
- As tried and tested language, Kotlin offers consistency. It provides unmatched reliability among languages that have been launched in the recent years.
- Kotlin offers a very intuitive and clean syntax. It ultimately results in fewer coding errors and more efficient programming output on the part of developers. Mobile developers can actually complete more tasks in less time by using Kotlin.
- Google and JetBrains both support Kotlin. This means that developers opting for Kotlin are in good company.
Cons of Kotlin
On the other hand, these are few drawbacks of Kotlin.
- Code compilation in Kotlin shows fluctuation. This is especially evident in the incremental development tasks.
- As it is a new language, so Kotlin doesn’t have large talent pool of developers.
- Support of a big developer community is also what Kotlin lacks.
- Kotlin in comparison to Java, offers few learning resources and tutorials.
Timeline of Kotlin
Kotlin compiler was included in Android Studio 3.0 as alternative for Java compiler in October 2017.
Google gave major push to Kotlin by labeling it preferred language for Android app development at Google I/O 2019 conference.
Now you know about the chronology of Kotlin language.
Attributes of Kotlin for Android Programmers
By now, you have a clear idea about the principal benefits and disadvantages, that Kotlin language provides for mobile programming procedure in essence.
We now explain the important features that Android app development with Kotlin offers for projects.
- Open Source Language
- Easy Setup
- Smooth Switching from Java
- Less Coding
- Unmatched App Performance
- No NullPointerException
- Simple Learning Curve
- Outstanding Support
Let’s discuss these plus points of Kotlin is detail now.
Open Source Language
Kotlin is a free and fully open-source programming language.
It allows converting your Java code to Kotlin with just a single tap.
With a large following of Android developers, Kotlin is constantly being improved by programmer inputs across projects.
Through inbuilt development support in Android studio 3.0, Kotlin lets simple setup.
All that developers need is to opt for the “Include Kotlin Support” box, when starting a new Android development project in the Android studio.
This is the easiest way to set up Kotlin for new Android app projects.
Smooth Switching from Java
Kotlin code offers 100% interoperability with Java code.
In addition, mobile developers who have experience in Java programming, can use Kotlin and Java code side by side in their app projects.
This does not undermine the app performance and output.
In case you are using Java for your Android projects, and want to use some Kotlin tools, you can just do this without any worries for compatibility.
One of the greatest advantages of Kotlin is that it allows writing fewer source code lines.
Kotlin completely removes the boilerplate codes that are common in Java.
The boilerplate code that developers need to repeat again and again, without any significant improvement, takes a lot of developer time and undermines productivity.
By using some other means, Kotlin reduces the code lines to a minimum, and thus keeps the source code size smaller.
Apart from boosting the development cycle, fewer code lines also help in minimizing coding errors.
Unmatched App Performance
Kotlin comes with a byte code structure, that helps faster running of the apps made with this language.
Moreover, through the inline functions of Kotlin, the pace of execution for lambda functions further gets a boost.
Kotlin even facilitates the faster running of the same code earlier written in Java language.
When it comes to regular development tasks, Kotlin offers a whole array of useful and handy features for easier task handling in any project.
Some of the efficiency and performance-boosting features that Kotlin offers include extension functions, parameter values, object declarations, and several others.
Often known as a common source for app crashing, NullPointerException (NPE) is a major reason for bad app performance.
Kotlin by removing the null reference from the app code, gives relief to the developers from all the time-consuming tasks of repairing NPE.
Thanks to the absence of NullPointerExceptions, a better development speed, and efficient output can be ensured.
Kotlin ensures the null safety of the code by its integrated type system.
Simple Learning Curve
The developers of JetBrains while creating the Kotlin language focused on simplicity and ease of learning.
Syntax of Kotlin is so simple and clean, that developers even without prior expertise with the language, can instantly understand Kotlin code and start working on it.
New mobile developers can take the help of a range of IDEs and compilers, to get accustomed with Kotlin development.
For instance, if you have a Java background, learning Kotlin becomes even more easy.
This is because, Kotlin is similar to Java, and provides some great UI improvements for Android apps.
Kotlin is known for highly functional programming, which focuses on completing tasks the easiest way possible, while maintaining consistency.
It provides ultimate support for functional programming that even Java language lacks.
For helping your Android projects to come to fruition, Kotlin developer community, Google and JetBrains provide a vast array of resources, sample projects, and discussion forums.
You can get help for everything related to Kotlin from these resources for your app projects.
In short, it is quite clear from our discussion that Kotlin has revolutionized the mobile development scene across the world.
Kotlin greatly helps in building robust and feature-rich Android apps across all niches.
Likewise, Kotlin embodies the future of Android development in more ways than one.
Therefore, the leading Android development firms are utilizing Kotlin for their front-line projects.
As a result, the Kotlin community continues to grow and thrive, and in the future, we can expect more Android apps to rely on Kotlin.
Do you need an Android app created?
Certainly, you can choose Kotlin for your next mobile app journey.
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