Create high quality mobile apps with Ionic & VS
Written by Jordan Matthiesen
Are you a web developer building mobile applications today? Are you considering joining the ranks of web developers moving beyond the mobile web to mobile app development? If so, then we have a treat for you – a new set of Visual Studio templates, building on top of the Apache Cordova platform, Ionic UI framework, and using the TypeScript language.
If you’re not familiar with it already, Ionic is a hugely popular starting point for Cordova developers; helping you build apps for Android, iOS, and Windows 10 devices with a great user experience. Native SDKs provide a set of ready-made UI controls that are optimized for mobile devices. HTML, on the other hand, only provides a set of primitives – essentially rectangles – to draw your UI. Ionic delivers HTML-based controls for the mobile developer. Do you need a tab control? Ionic’s got it. Do you need a listview? Ionic’s got it… and more.
Our Tools for Apache Cordova (TACO) team, has been working closely with the Ionic team over the past year to make sure Visual Studio developers have a first-class experience when using the Ionic framework and the TypeScript language, which is the language of choice for developing with the upcoming Ionic 2 framework. This week, we’re releasing two new sets of Ionic templates using the TypeScript language:
- A brand new set of Ionic 2 (Beta 10) Templates
- An update to the existing Ionic 1 Templates, adding TypeScript support
Download them now by clicking the links above, or read on to learn a bit more about them
Try the future today, with Ionic 2
The Ionic team is working tirelessly toward an RC release of the next version of Ionic, based on Angular 2. Our team is likewise working on having great Ionic 2 support in Visual Studio and today we’re sharing with you an early version of Ionic 2 templates, based on the current Ionic 2 Beta 10 release.
This set of templates includes the same three templates as the Ionic 1 release described above:
Our team is releasing these templates as an experiment in Visual Studio 2015 while working to make an excellent Ionic 2 developer experience in Visual Studio “15” – the next version of Visual Studio.
There are a few rough edges in the developer experience, which are noted in the Project Readme page you’ll see when first creating a project with the templates. Most notably, you’ll need to do the following when using these Ionic 2 templates:
- Install Update 3 or later of Visual Studio 2015
- Install the latest release of the ASP.NET Web tooling
- After creating your project for the first time, wait for the “(Restoring)” message to disappear from the dependencies item in the Solution Explorer
- Before building, open the Task Runner Explorer from the View | Other Windows | Task Runner Explorer menu. This will enable Visual Studio to run the custom Gulp build script used by this template
To learn more about the framework and how to use these beta templates, see our newly released Getting Started with Ionic 2 tutorial!
TypeScript and Ionic 1; better tooling through types
- Side Menu
With TypeScript support now included, you get the same tooling benefits as other TypeScript developers. Some of the highlights include:
- High accuracy IntelliSense for your code
- Refactoring tools
- Find References throughout your source
- Move through your code with symbol-based navigation
To learn more about working with Visual Studio, check out our product page.