Two new releases for Android development have hit the market, with drag-and-drop functionality and simple scripts to allow designers unfamiliar with Java to quickly learn how to create and deploy applications for the mobile platform.

Xamarin, a provider of development software for Android, iOS and Windows, today announced Xamarin Designer for Android. Designer allows developers to create Android applications from within Microsoft’s Visual Studio or Xamarin’s IDE, according to the company.

Xamarin Designer, according to COO Joseph Hill, allows C# developers to write code in C# and utilize .NET libraries to create applications, and then the tool renders the Android XML files to the device.

Hill said designers can create applications for all Android-supported hardware by selecting different options for different hardware models directly in the designer. Developers can edit all properties and components for native Android applications from within Xamarin’s IDE or Visual Studio, using the Designer plugin. Xamarin Designer supports Android API levels going back to 4, as well as the Froyo, Gingerbread, Honeycomb and Ice Cream Sandwich versions of the operating system.

Meanwhile, the recently released Designer4android allows Java developers to create and test Android applications for any Android-based device, according to Erel Uziel, founder and CEO of Anywhere Software, the tool’s creator.

Anywhere Software, based in Israel, started in 2005 with Basic4ppc, a tool used to create applications for Microsoft’s Pocket PC. Basic4android is a desktop-based application for Microsoft Windows-based PCs, and provides an additional tool for native Android development, according to Uziel. The tool’s user interface is very similar to Visual Basic and allows developers who are not familiar with Java to easily create Android applications by converting simple scripts to standard Java.

About Victoria Reitano