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Kotlin, everything they haven’t told you

Anabel Castro

7 minutes of reading

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Programming is one of the most important areas of knowledge in the last decades; nowadays there are numerous programming languages. One of the most recent, one of the most named, and one of the most requested is Kotlin, designed for the development of Android applications.  

In a short time, the combination of Android with Kotlin has become one of the most widely used in the programming world. Currently, most mobile development experts use Kotlin, and 70% of the most used applications worldwide have been programmed with this language. According to Google data, 70% of the top 1000 on Google Play use this language. This popularity is due to the simplicity and efficiency of its code, allowing programmers to work more comfortably and productively. 

Cover-Kotlin

What is Kotlin?

Kotlin is a “pragmatic” programming language of the static type, free, open source, and general purpose. It mainly focuses on interoperability, security, clarity, and tool support. Google declared it the official language for Android app development in 2019. 

Now that we know about Kotlin, what are its main features? 

– Concise: it is a more concise language; it estimates to reduce 40% of code lines compared to Java. 

– Interoperability: it is highly interoperable with Java. You will not have any problem using Kotlin in a Java project. 

– Feature-rich: it provides several advanced features such as operator overloading, lambda expressions, string templates, etc. 

– Easy to learn: if you have Java experience, it will be easy for you to learn Kotlin. 

– Less error-prone: it is a static programming language, letting you to detect errors at compile time. 

Currently, Google recommends starting Android projects with Kotlin, being the fastest-growing language on GitHub. This is a trend that has not gone unnoticed among industry professionals and, therefore, more and more programmers are leaping to this code. For 2017 and 2018, 352,000 active users were using Kotlin, but this number exceeded one million between 2019 and 2020.  

Kotlin-Active-Users

For a long time, Java has been the first language that revives the memory of any Android development; however, as we have mentioned, another language that has knocked on the doors of the Android community with force and irreverence has been Kotlin. That is why learning Kotlin has become one of the mandatory requirements for any Mobile developer. 

Reasons to learn it

  1. Simplicity, one pillar of modern languages: Kotlin opts for simplicity. This language was born with the intention of simplifying Android developers the process when creating applications, translating into time, costs, stability, operability, and clarity. 
  1. Permutability with Java: another pillar of its creation is the absolute interchangeability with Java. It is possible to have code in both languages, at the same time and in the same project that the compilation will not give any error. In addition, most Java frameworks and libraries can be also used in Kotlin projects. 
  1. Absolute support and integration with Android Studio: Kotlin has been developed by JetBrains, the company behind IntelliJ, or, in other words, the IDE on which Android Studio is based. Hence, its unique and extraordinary support with Kotlin. Just by installing the Kotlin plugin, Android Studio makes setting up Kotlin in your project as easy as a couple of clicks. Remember, getting everything running smoothly right out of the box is a potential advantage. 
  1. Quick and easy learning: even though is a standalone language, it seems to be an improvement for Java. That is, most of the skills you already mastered in Java will still work for you and will apply to your new projects with Kotlin, allowing the learning curve to be quite fast. 
  1. Maturity of the language and its environment: Kotlin, unlike other Mobile programming languages, starts in a mature and stable phase. This maturity, both in the language and in its environment, makes working with this code simple and enjoyable. 
  1. Great impact on the industry: well-known companies such as Pinterest, Basecamp or Flipboard already use Kotlin. Everything points at the fact that this trend will continue growing thanks to the power and simplicity of this language. 
Hello-World-Kotlin

With the right method, Kotlin can be learned in a very short time. Programming with this language means “less to write, less to test, less to maintain”. For this reason, the attraction of programmers and the migration of companies to this code is increasing. And you, will you start learning this great code? In our next blog, we will talk about tips and recommendations when programming in Kotlin and if you need a strategic partner, let’s talk.

Sources:  

  • Google quiere que aprendas este lenguaje para hacer apps, El español, julio 2020
  • Introduction to Kotlin, GeeksforGeeks, diciembre 2021
  • Android con Kotlin: Presente y futuro, KeepCoding, enero 2022

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