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Qt vs Xamarin: What are the differences?

What is Qt? A leading cross-platform application and UI framework. Qt, a leading cross-platform application and UI framework. With Qt, you can develop applications once and deploy to leading desktop, embedded & mobile targets.

What is Xamarin? Create iOS, Android and Mac apps in C#. Xamarin鈥檚 Mono-based products enable .NET developers to use their existing code, libraries and tools (including Visual Studio*), as well as skills in .NET and the C# programming language, to create mobile applications for the industry鈥檚 most widely-used mobile devices, including Android-based smartphones and tablets, iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.

Qt and Xamarin can be primarily classified as "Cross-Platform Mobile Development" tools.

Olo, Crowdkeep, and GoFormz are some of the popular companies that use Xamarin, whereas Qt is used by Testo, Monolit, and Kosada. Xamarin has a broader approval, being mentioned in 75 company stacks & 66 developers stacks; compared to Qt, which is listed in 10 company stacks and 17 developer stacks.

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What is Qt?

Qt, a leading cross-platform application and UI framework. With Qt, you can develop applications once and deploy to leading desktop, embedded & mobile targets.

What is Xamarin?

Xamarin鈥檚 Mono-based products enable .NET developers to use their existing code, libraries and tools (including Visual Studio*), as well as skills in .NET and the C# programming language, to create mobile applications for the industry鈥檚 most widely-used mobile devices, including Android-based smartphones and tablets, iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
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What are some alternatives to Qt and Xamarin?
wxWidgets
It is a C++ library that lets developers create applications for Windows, macOS, Linux and other platforms with a single code base. It has popular language bindings for Python, Perl, Ruby and many other languages, and unlike other cross-platform toolkits, it gives applications a truly native look and feel because it uses the platform's native API rather than emulating the GUI. It's also extensive, free, open-source and mature.
KDevelop
It is a feature-full, plugin extensible IDE for C/C++ and many other programming languages. It offers a seamless development environment to programmers that work on projects of any size. It helps you get the job done while staying out of your way.
React Native
React Native enables you to build world-class application experiences on native platforms using a consistent developer experience based on JavaScript and React. The focus of React Native is on developer efficiency across all the platforms you care about - learn once, write anywhere. Facebook uses React Native in multiple production apps and will continue investing in React Native.
Ionic
Free and open source, Ionic offers a library of mobile and desktop-optimized HTML, CSS and JS components for building highly interactive apps. Use with Angular, React, Vue, or plain JavaScript.
Flutter
Flutter is a mobile app SDK to help developers and designers build modern mobile apps for iOS and Android.
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Decisions about Qt and Xamarin
Greg Neumann
Greg Neumann
Indie, Solo, Developer | 6 upvotes 76.6K views
TypeScript
TypeScript
Vue.js
Vue.js
Electron
Electron
Quasar Framework
Quasar Framework
ASP.NET
ASP.NET
Xamarin Forms
Xamarin Forms
.NET Core
.NET Core
Xamarin
Xamarin

Finding the most effective dev stack for a solo developer. Over the past year, I've been looking at many tech stacks that would be 'best' for me, as a solo, indie, developer to deliver a desktop app (Windows & Mac) plus mobile - iOS mainly. Initially, Xamarin started to stand-out. Using .NET Core as the run-time, Xamarin as the native API provider and Xamarin Forms for the UI seemed to solve all issues. But, the cracks soon started to appear. Xamarin Forms is mobile only; the Windows incarnation is different. There is no Mac UI solution (you have to code it natively in Mac OS Storyboard. I was also worried how Xamarin Forms , if I was to use it, was going to cope, in future, with Apple's new SwiftUI and Google's new Fuchsia.

This plethora of techs for the UI-layer made me reach for the safer waters of using Web-techs for the UI. Lovely! Consistency everywhere (well, mostly). But that consistency evaporates when platform issues are addressed. There are so many web frameworks!

But, I made a simple decision. It's just me...I am clever, but there is no army of coders here. And I have big plans for a business app. How could just 1 developer go-on to deploy a decent app to Windows, iPhone, iPad & Mac OS? I remembered earlier days when I've used Microsoft's ASP.NET to scaffold - generate - loads of Code for a web-app that I needed for several charities that I worked with. What 'generators' exist that do a lot of the platform-specific rubbish, allow the necessary customisation of such platform integration and provide a decent UI?

I've placed my colours to the Quasar Framework mast. Oh dear, that means Electron desktop apps doesn't it? Well, Ive had enough of loads of Developers saying that "the menus won't look native" or "it uses too much RAM" and so on. I've been using non-native UI-wrapped apps for ages - the date picker in Outlook on iOS is way better than the native date-picker and I'd been using it for years without getting hot under the collar about it. Developers do get so hung-up on things that busy Users hardly notice; don't you think?. As to the RAM usage issue; that's a bit true. But Users only really notice when an app uses so much RAM that the machine starts to page-out. Electron contributes towards that horizon but does not cause it. My Users will be business-users after all. Somewhat decent machines.

Looking forward to all that lovely Vue.js around my TypeScript and all those really, really, b e a u t I f u l UI controls of Quasar Framework . Still not sure that 1 dev can deliver all that... but I'm up for trying...

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Interest over time
Reviews of Qt and Xamarin
Review ofXamarinXamarin

I'm working in Huge company and I'm in charge to choose the cross-platform environment to develop Mobile application for all our services. I choose Xamarin but because the error i get everytime in Visual Studio, I want to leave it and recommand another solution. In fact that's why I'm here.

Weird, Install VS2017 with Xamarin on a new PC Create a new app GOT ERRORS.....!!!!!

Thank you for considering this

How developers use Qt and Xamarin
Avatar of Foundbite
Foundbite uses XamarinXamarin

Xamarin enables us to develop for 3 platforms (iOS, Android and Windows Phone) with one core codebase coded in C#. Xamarin has allowed us to release an app on all three platforms and develop them simultaneously - not bad for a team of 2!

Avatar of Ana Phi Sancho
Ana Phi Sancho uses XamarinXamarin

Self taught : acquired knowledge or skill on one's own initiative. Platform: OSX 10.8 or later. Mac computer user.

Avatar of Robert Brown
Robert Brown uses XamarinXamarin

Build & ship OS X & iOS apps from Visual Studio on Windows. Requires paid team license.

Avatar of Daniel Kovacs
Daniel Kovacs uses XamarinXamarin

Mobile app development with PCL and Xamarin.iOS and Xamarin.Android.

Avatar of Olo
Olo uses XamarinXamarin

Cross platform, white labelled native mobile apps

How much does Qt cost?
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