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InfoQ Homepage News .NET MAUI: Preview 8 Available, But GA Postponed to Q2 2022

.NET MAUI: Preview 8 Available, But GA Postponed to Q2 2022

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.NET MAUI is an evolution of Xamarin.Forms, aimed at improving app performance and simplifying multi-platform app development. The framework will provide a single codebase with built-in resources to access the native API for all modern operating systems (Android, iOS, macOS, Windows). Developers will be able to develop multi-platform applications under a single project structure, adding different resources or source code files for different platforms when necessary. 

Microsoft postponed the GA release of .NET MAUI. Global availability release of .NET MAUI was targeted together with .NET 6 for November 2021. 

According to the latest news from Microsoft, .NET MAUI will not be ready for production with .NET 6 global availability in November this year. The new planned date is set for early Q2 of 2022. 

As reported by Scott Hunter, director of program management at Microsoft:

The .NET team has been working hard with the community in the open on its development and we are committed to its release. Unfortunately, .NET MAUI will not be ready for production with .NET 6 GA in November. We want to provide the best experience, performance, and quality on day 1 to our users and to do that, we need to slip the schedule. We are now targeting early Q2 of 2022 for .NET MAUI GA. 

In the meantime, developers will continue to receive and explore monthly previews of .NET MAUI, while Xamarin will remain the recommended product for building production mobile apps and products. Features that were planned to be ready in November will remain on the list, but future work on .NET MAUI will be focused on quality and addressing customer feedback. The official blog post also gives info that .NET Upgrade Assistant will support the upgrade of Xamarin projects to .NET MAUI.

This year , the.NET team released a couple of important previews for .NET MAUI, and the latest one and September edition is Preview 8. The latest preview brings the update for app startup pattern, also the ability to extend a handler, and miscellaneous other new control capabilities.

From now .NET MAUI is now available as a workload in the Visual Studio 2022 installer. While installing Visual Studio 2022 Preview 4, developers can now choose .NET MAUI (preview) within the Mobile Development with .NET workload. Visual Studio update also brings the improvements for XAML Hot Reload and .NET Hot Restart.

Migration is required for existing applications because Preview 8 now has a .NET Host builder pattern for app startup aligned with how ASP.NET and Blazor do that. From now, MauiProgram class creates and returns the MauiApp, and each platform is calling MauiProgram.CreateMauiApp part of it. An example can be found on the official blog post

Android 12 (API 31) now represents the default for .NET 6 applications, and for Android projects, MaterialTheme is the default one. In order to avoid runtime errors on Android, developers should make sure that Platforms/Android/MainActivity.cs specifies @style/Maui.SplashTheme.

Preview 8 also includes the various improvements to Shell theme styling and additions like RefreshView for Android and iOS, AbsoluteLayout, Right-to-Left (RTL) FlowDirection, and Button.Icon ImageSource.

Regarding the near future and next releases, the roadmap reveals to us that the next Preview will be focused on more bug fixes, borders, corners, shadows, Essentials/Forms API reconciliation, font improvements, image source - service for loading images, iOS caching, GIF fixes, handler refactoring and additional work on a port of remaining handlers.

To follow the project development progress and next releases of .NET MAUI, the official roadmap is available on the GitHub wiki roadmap.

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