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August 27, 2014

Xamarin to Expand Microsoft's C# Programming Language with $54M Funding Round

The only way to describe Microsoft’s (News - Alert) assessment of the smartphone market is catastrophic. The company completely missed the boat in an industry that shipped close to 300 million units in Q2 of 2014, and unfortunately for Microsoft it only had 2.5 percent of the market share. Android (News - Alert), on the other hand, had 84.7 percent of the market, and iOS managed 11.7 percent, which together made up 96.4 percent. Only time will tell if it will be able to increase the meager 2.5 percent it currently has, but one area in which it can make inroads is with app development.

Xamarin, a company pushing the Microsoft C# programming language to allow developers to code apps for different platforms, has received a $54 million new round of funding to further that goal.

Allowing developers to code applications using Microsoft’s C# programming language could help Microsoft indirectly increase its smartphone presence in the market place. The $54 million Series C round of financing was led by Ignition Partners, Lead Edge Capital, Insight Venture Partners, Floodgate and Charles River Ventures. This brings the total the company has raised so far to $82 million, with $12 million coming from Series A and $16 million in Series B rounds.

According to the Xamarin, the funds will be used to increase its presence in the mobile market which so far has resulted in triple-digit year-over-year revenue growth. The company plans on branching to other countries around the world, including the opening of an office in London later this fall to focus more on the European market as well as possible acquisitions to help the company solve problems for mobile developers.

Xamarin apps share code across all platforms by targeting iOS, Android, Windows and Mac with a single, shared C# codebase. Developers can use the same language, APIs and data structures on every platform to build interfaces with Xamarin forms and share nearly 100 percent of the code.

This makes Xamarin apps more connected by using NuGet and a choice from over 20,000 existing .NET libraries, or pull in curated SDKs like Microsoft Azure, SAP (News - Alert) and Salesforce from the Xamarin Component Store. Apps can be tested on hundreds of real devices with Xamarin Test Cloud by running automated UI tests for any iOS or Android app across hundreds of real devices in the company’s secure testing facility. Any defects can be detected before the product is launched to market by monitoring performance across device models, OS versions and screen sizes.

“The broad collaboration between Microsoft and Xamarin is targeted at supporting developers interested in extending their applications across multiple devices. With Xamarin, developers combine all of the productivity benefits of C#, Visual Studio 2013 and Windows Azure with the flexibility to quickly build for multiple device targets,” said S. Somasegar (News - Alert), corporate vice president of Microsoft Corporation.

Edited by Alisen Downey

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