Android Studio vs Eclipse

Native android apps can be developed using Android Studio or Eclipse. When i decided to venture into android programming, I was unsure which of both IDEs to start learning with because when i was looking into starting android development, Android Studio was in beta and Eclipse was the buzz. Having encountered this, I am sure several other beginner android devs may have faced this issue or maybe facing this issue.

Android Studio is currently the ideal IDE for developing Native Android apps. While some may disagree with this statement or consider this just an opinionated statement, I intend to point out several facts to support this statement and also try to make you see why you should be using Android Studio for your new Android project and why you should stick to Android Studio if you are just starting out as an Android programmer.

  1. Google has announced that they are ending development and official support for the Android Developer Tools (ADT) in Eclipse by the end of the year. This specifically includes the Eclipse ADT plugin and Android Ant build system. This move according to Google, is to allow them focus more efforts on making Android Studio better and faster.
  2. Android Studio offers better app development experience to Android developers. Google has received positive feedback regarding Android Studio from many impressed developers and it has become the official Android IDE.
  3. User interface in Android Studio is easy to navigate and straight-forward to get to where you want to be with little effort while Eclipse seems to somewhat big and overwhelming especially if you are just starting out with it.
  4. Android Studio was built purposely for Android development, while Eclipse was built as an all-purpose IDE that can be used with any language and platform.
  5. Eclipse IDE is quite a large IDE thus requiring a large amount of RAM and high CPU speed to function properly on your machine while Android Studio is relatively small and does not grab so much system resources to run. Android Studio builds complex projects in seconds that will take minutes to build in Eclipse.
  6. Android Studio has drag-and-drop features which is absent in Eclipse. This may not seem a big deal, but this feature will be greatly appreciated when you wish to rapidly develop an app without having to worry about writing code to display your visual elements.
  7. Advanced code completion in Android Studio is better than what Eclipse offers. Although Eclipse offers code completion, it sometimes doesn’t provide precise results for your code completion. Bear in mind that code completion is a vital productivity tool for developers.

Conclusion

Android Studio has immensely grown and has been received positively by the Android community. This has already began to cause a gradual “dying away” of Eclipse for Android development. If you are starting out in Android programming or starting a new Android project,  I advise you use Android Studio while if you are already using Eclipse, i suggest you have a look at Android Studio and consider how you can switch over to Android Studio without any trouble.

 

Happy coding !

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  • p nelson

    I disagree that Android Studio is (as of 2.1.1) is user friendly, at least to anyone used to a more modern IDE (Eclipse, Visual Studio, etc). I find Android Studio too old school –

    1. Compile errors and warnings are embedded as text messages in a stream of random output from gradle that you have to scroll through, where as more modern IDE’s have a panel just for compiler errors and warnings that you can click on and be taken directly to the offending line in a source editor. If such a thing exists in A.S I haven’t been able to find it.

    2. Many build settings and options that other IDE’s let you set in a GUI can only be set by hand editing .gradle files using a proprietary scripting language – Gradle. It’s like getting in a time machine and going back to the 1980’s with your 8-track tape deck and Sony Walkman and hand editing make files to build C programs.

    • mistafloss

      You have made some really valid points here. Since writing this post I have moved to making mobile apps more with Ionic. Thanks for your contribution