Go-Live License Next for .NET MAUI in .NET 8, but Criticism Persists
Microsoft announced a go-live support license is the next step for .NET MAUI, an improvement on mobile-centric Xamarin as it targets desktop apps too.
In announcing Preview 7 for .NET 8, the dev team revealed it has now switched its focus to .NET 8 after .NET 7's final service release and now will polish things up in two Release Candidates before a November debut with .NET 8.
That team has been plagued by various problems, came in late (the pandemic didn't help) and last year was criticized by some developers for rushing out a product, as detailed in the September 2022 Visual Studio Magazine article, "Did .NET MAUI Ship Too Soon? Devs Sound Off on 'Massive Mistake'"
Developer discontent continued in this week's announcement post by David Ortinau, which garnered an unusually high number of 25 comments, including ones that contained comments like:
- I'm sorry but you've finally managed to break me.
- MAUI should be discontinued. It's an acceptable concept which has been failed by poor management, poor talent, poor sense of responsibility.
- TLDR: It's not production ready, and propably won't be for 3-4 more years (optimistic), possibly even more.
- With each release we must decide if the bugs in the old or the new release are more critical and if we should update or not.
- I wonder if all the hard work has been for nothing sometimes with Maui and wish I had never heard of it and could have just kept the original fully working Xamarin applications.
- cannot wait to find out how the new preview messes up my layout again. Grid, one of the most basic Layout classes is broken for months now
- My recommendation is to run away from MAUI.
Which is not to say that all feedback or even the majority was negative, but this seems to exceed the usual number of such derogatory comments, coming from a long observer of the .NET development blog from Microsoft.
The release notes list more than 40 items that were changed in this final preview.
In noting what's fixed and improved in the release, Ortinau provided a more succinct highlight list:
- Memory Leak Resolutions: Several memory leak issues were addressed in various UI controls, including Border, Editor, and Entry on different platforms, such as iOS, Android, and Windows. These fixes ensure improved memory management and application stability.
- Enhanced UI Control Functionality: UI controls like Border, WebView, and Entry received updates to their behavior, performance, and customization options on different platforms (iOS, Android, Windows). These enhancements contribute to a more user-friendly and feature-rich experience.
- Platform-Specific Improvements: Each major platform (iOS, Android, Windows) saw targeted improvements, ranging from memory leak fixes to performance enhancements, ensuring that the app runs smoothly and efficiently across diverse environments.
- Bug Fixes and Refinements: Several bugs, ranging from appearance issues (Shell TabBar) to functionality (SelectedItemChanged in ListView), were resolved across different platforms. These fixes contribute to a more polished and error-free application.
- Input and Interaction Enhancements: Improvements were made to user input and interaction features, such as cursor preservation in text boxes, menu key accelerators, and InputTransparent behavior permutations. These updates enhance user engagement and application usability.
Ortinau noted that 25 contributors helped with the release, for which the team is preparing to introduce Xcode 15 support in the next .NET 8 release for the new versions of iOS, iPadOS, macOS, Mac Catalyst, tvOS and CarPlay. "From that point forward .NET 8 will use Xcode 15 which we anticipate to be the stable Xcode at the time .NET 8 ships in November," said the principal product manager, .NET Multi-platform App UI.
David Ramel is an editor and writer for Converge360.