It has been a bit over a year since I first introduced my Xamarin.Android Templates pack for Visual Studio and things sure have changed in the world of Android since then. Early on the templates pack only introduced a few item templates for menu items and a simple implementation of the Navigation Drawer, my favorite way to navigate in Android. Then this March Google went and changed everything with AppCompat and the introduction of the new Toolbar. I rushed to update all of my templates to include all these nice new features. It looks like it is that time of the year again with the new Android Design Support Library, which yet again changes how we implement the Navigation Drawer and of course let’s not forget about the big change to AppCompatActivity.
I am pleased to announce the latest release of my templates that incorporate all of these changes to make it easy to get up and running with AppCompat and the new fancy navigation drawer featuring the NavigationView.
You can grab these templates from the Visual Studio Gallery by going to “Tools->Extensions and Updates” in any flavor of Visual Studio and searching for Xamarin.Android Templates.
Once installed you will see a few new Project Templates under Android to create a blank app that features AppCompat or a full Navigation Drawer enabled app also featuring AppCompat:
Once you have your app up and running you might want to add a few new menu items such as search, share, or just a menu item and I have you covered:
Of course everything is open source on GitHub so you take take a peek at what I am doing in the templates. Additionally, if you already have an app and are looking to upgrade your navigation drawer or tabs to the new material support library implementations then look no further than my Xam.NavDrawer GitHub repo that has been updated with an awesome new example!
I hope you enjoy these new updated templates and I look forward to your feedback or suggestions for future updates!