Since its introduction in the fall of 2008, Android has grown and matured to the point where it is currently the number one smartphone platform in terms of shipments worldwide. Along with that growth is an interest in writing applications that run natively on the device and that take advantage of the device's features, such as the camera and voice recognition.

Since the release of the .NET Framework in January 2002, its growth has been impressive. It is the most popular development framework in use today. While the .NET Framework was in initial development, Miguel de Icaza, who worked for Ximian, created his own C# compiler, and from that the Mono framework was born. In 2003, Novell purchased Ximian. In 2011, Attachmate purchased Novell. Later in 2011, Xamarin was formed and all of the products associated with Mono, MonoTouch, Mono for Android, and MonoDevelop were transferred to Xamarin. The payoff for us as developers is that Xamarin is laser-focused on Mono for Android and MonoTouch, and on making those the best products available for development on mobile with Android and iPhone. Throughout all of this, the Mono framework has grown to run across various platforms. Initially, Mono was designed to run on Linux. Since that time, Mono has branched out and is available across several non-Windows platforms. In the summer of 2009, the MonoTouch framework was shipped. This allowed developers to write applications with the .NET Framework and using the C# language to run ...

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