Finally! Microsoft Acquires Mobile Cross-Platform Development Startup Xamarin

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Microsoft said Wednesday that it has inked an agreement to acquire mobile application development startup Xamarin, nearly two years after CRN first reported that the two companies were in talks about an acquisition or strategic investment.

Terms of the deal weren't disclosed.

Xamarin's technology lets developers build native iOS and Android apps using Microsoft's C# programming language, which means they can write one set of code and use it for apps targeting multiple platforms.

[Related: Microsoft In Talks To Acquire Mobile App Development Startup Xamarin -- Sources]

Xamarin has more than 1.3 million developers and 15,000 customers using its technology, including more than 20 percent of the Fortune 500, Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of Microsoft's Cloud and Enterprise Group, said in a blog post Wednesday.

"The combination of Xamarin, Visual Studio, Visual Studio Team Services, and Azure delivers a complete mobile app dev solution that provides everything a developer needs to develop, test, deliver and instrument mobile apps for every device," Guthrie said in the blog post.

Xamarin's co-founders, CEO Nat Friedman and Chief Technology Officer Miguel de Icaza, founded Ximian in 1999 and worked together to build Mono, an open-source implementation of the Microsoft .Net development framework. They joined Novell in its acquisition of Ximian in 2003 and left to start Xamarin when Attachmate bought Novell in 2011.

A Microsoft spokeswoman told CRN that de Icaza and Friedman will be joining Microsoft in the acquisition. "This isn’t just about acquiring innovative technology, it’s also about acquiring a strong team, and we want to keep that team together," said the spokeswoman.

Xamarin has been a Microsoft partner since 2013, and has had a large presence at the software giant's Build conferences since then. Xamarin also has partnerships with IBM,, SAP and Oracle.

Acquiring Xamarin is the latest in a series of moves Microsoft has made in the past two years to make it easier for developers to build mobile apps by reusing code across multiple platforms. Microsoft has also open sourced parts of .Net to make it more suitable for cross-platform development.

Microsoft app development partners told CRN they're pleased to see the software giant stepping up to acquire Xamarin.

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