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How to Speed up Xamarin.Forms UI Development Process Using Xamarin Forms Player

If you are using Xamarin.Forms to develop a UI for your mobile app, then you probably feel crippled by the lack of a designer. It can take a couple of minutes when making a simple change in your XAML file until you can see your change in action on your favorite emulator or device. This lag is known to cause a lot of frustration for developers working on UI design and can negatively influence productivity.

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How Are Mobile Devices Impacting US Retail?

In 2012, Deloitte Consulting LLP discovered that smartphone usage influenced 5.1% of all retail store sales in the US. That translated into approximately $159 billion in forecasted sales for that year. The consulting firm predicted that by 2016, smartphones will influence 17-21% of total sales, which amounts to $628-$752 billion.

Even anecdotal evidence points to the strong and pervasive influence mobile devices have on retail in the US. How many times have you walked into a store and seen customers milling through the aisles, engrossed in what’s taking place on their smartphone screens?

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Mobile BI Solutions: Leveraging Mobility to Make Better Business Decisions

Imagine having information you needed to make an important business decision right at your fingertips. You don’t have to think very hard about it – such a thing is possible, thanks to business intelligence software.

“Business intelligence” refers to a technology-driven process for analyzing data. Managers and business leaders rely on this data to make better decisions for an organization. Business intelligence software (known as BI) is software solutions which analyze information.

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What Will the Future of Mobile App Development Look Like?

A little over a decade ago, most people had no idea what a mobile application was. Today, it’s hard to find someone who doesn’t know what they are. Mobile applications have become so entrenched in our lives that it can be difficult to believe there was a time when they didn’t exist.

Much like mobile applications themselves, the technology used to develop them continues to change and improve. New technologies will enable developers to deliver a higher quality user experience, making it easier for users to accomplish their goals through their mobile devices.

What does the future of mobile application development hold if it continues to change and improve rapidly? Here are some predictions.

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Empower Your Employees to Capitalize on Mobile Moments

Business leaders need to ask themselves this crucial question: is our company enabling our employees to make the most of mobile moments? The way you answer this query says a lot about your company, including whether it has a chance of succeeding in our increasingly mobile world.

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Gatekeepers or Business Enablers: IT’s New Role

Human beings have a tendency towards nostalgia. We long for (what we believe to have been) simpler times. IT departments the world over are nostalgic for the days in which they could dictate what platform, operating system and device employees could use. In the days of BYOD and mobility, the power of IT departments to make those rules has severely eroded.

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B2B Mobile Moments: Why They Matter

Mobile technologies such as applications and mobile devices (which include smart phones and tablets) are excellent tools to connect with customers. B2C opportunities are not the only ones that exist when it comes to mobile technologies, though. Many companies overlook the business-to-business prospects associated with mobility.

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Implementing Navigation Drawer in Xamarin Forms

Every mobile application which is going to be used as real world app requires navigation solution. On Android platform recommendation for effective navigation is Navigation Drawer. It is a panel that transitions in from the left edge of the screen and displays the app’s main navigation options. More info about Navigation Drawer and it's capabilities you can find on Android developer site.

Other platforms have similar solutions, so if you are developing in Xamarin Forms, it is a good idea to empower this kind of navigation. Plus side for Xamarin Forms it that you would write Navigation Drawer in only one codebase.

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COUNTDOWN: Microsoft Ignite & Merit Solutions Walk Off

Merit Walk Off Countdown

Merit Walk Off at Microsoft Ignite - Win a Trip to the Caribbean!

Microsoft Ignite Attendees: Do you know McCormick Place is the nation's largest convention center?

With a combined 2.6 million square feet of exhibit space, 1.2 million square feet all on one level, you can assume that you will be walking A LOT at Microsoft Ignite next week. 

That's why we're holding the Merit Walk Off at Ignite - a competition that measures how far you walk during Ignite and lets you compete against other attendees for a 5-night all-inclusive stay for 2 in the Caribbean! We're not asking you to walk MORE at Ignite, we're just asking you to track how far you are already walking.

The person who walks the most miles each day of the conference will be entered into a drawing for the Grand Prize, a five-night all-inclusive stay for two (2) in a Junior Suite at one of the following hotels (the winner gets to choose!):

  • Hotel RIU Palace Punta Cana (Punta Cana, Dominican Republic)
  • Hotel RIU Palace Cabo San Lucas (Los Cabos, Mexico)
  • Hotel RIU Palace Costa Rica (Guanacaste, Costa Rica)

Reward yourself for all the walking you'll do at Ignite by competing in the Merit Walk Off!

Simply download the Merit Solutions Mobile application from your device store. (Here are the links to the application in the iPhone, Android, Windows stores.) Once you download the app, you can enter the Walk Off two ways:

  • Prior to Monday, May 4th: Open the Navigation Pane and select App Settings. Enter your contact information, select Enter Walk Off Contest, and click Save.
    Microsoft Ignite Walk Off for a trip to the Caribbean!
    Microsoft Ignite Walk Off for a trip to the Caribbean!
    Microsoft Ignite Walk Off for a trip to the Caribbean!
    Microsoft Ignite Walk Off for a trip to the Caribbean!

  • Beginning on Monday, May 4th: A tile will appear on the homepage of the application that will direct people to the contest landing page. Once registered, this is where you can view the real-time leaderboard!
    Microsoft Ignite Walk Off for a trip to the Caribbean!
    Microsoft Ignite Walk Off for a trip to the Caribbean!

The app will then track the distance you travel each day and will let you compete with other attendees. The person who walks the most each day will be placed in the Grand Prize drawing. The more days you win - the better your chances are at winning the trip!

One Microsoft Ignite attendee will win this trip - why can't it be you? Good luck and good walking!

(NOTE: The Merit Solutions Mobile application DOES NOT track or store any geographic location data of contestants.)