Android mobile application development is a growing industry with new mobile apps coming almost daily. It was the time when we did not have many options but code the application right from the scratch for each platform. But, wow with the constant innovation in the technology, we may easily code our own mobile apps quickly and efficiently by using various functions in it.
Kotlin today has become quite an emerging and prevalent language at a contemporary time. The language was released in 2011 and is rising till today. This is the cross-platform and general-purpose modern programming language. Kotlin programming language can be used for android app development. However, before you start using the Kotlin language, it is important to select an IDE where you can write its source code. Here, we will try to reveal some Best IDEs names by which you may understand which is the best IDE for Kotlin.
Which IDE is good for Kotlin and how do you find the right one? There are many editors and IDEs available today that is good for Kotlin programming, but some popular names I recommend include:
- IntelliJ IDEA
- Android Studio
- Sublime Text
- Visual Studio Code
But, before understanding each IDEs in detail, let us know more about them first.
What’s an IDE?
Integrated Development Environment or IDE is the comprehensive solution, which allows the mobile application developers to carry out the software development cycle at a faster pace. The development cycle includes writing, designing, testing, compiling, and debugging a code. For the fast development, it is suggested that you use IDE’s.
7 Best IDEs for Kotlin
1. IntelliJ IDEA
Having an exquisite and clean interface, this IDE specializes in enterprise web & mobile application development with help of Scala, Java, Groovy, Kotlin, and different frameworks for Android app development. Furthermore, detailed documentation will help in the seamless integration that is simple to understand.
Furthermore, multiple plugins are accessible for the IntelliJ IDEA to carry out any task. This framework-based assistance, unobtrusive intelligence, productivity boosters, inspections, and duplicates are offered with the IDE. By using IntelliJ IDE, you may do in-depth Kotlin coding, fast navigation as well as error analysis too.
Community edition in IntelliJ IDEA can easily be accessed free for developing Android and JVM app development, however, in its Ultimate Edition, you can access at the cost for applications.
- Runs on: Linux, Windows, and macOS.
- The editor offers in-depth coding.
- With help of IntelliJ IDE, you can fast navigate any code.
- Suppose you have some errors in the code then IDE can bring errors you have performed in the code.
- It smartly compiles the source code.
As per PYPL Index, Eclipse is an open-source IDE and is the second most popular IDE used, and Eclipse Foundation says their current version is downloaded over 1.8 million times. This IDE started as the Java IDE and has grown to support several programming languages.
For many years, the Eclipse version with an Android plug-in was one highly recommended development for various Android platforms. Even though Google has ceased their support for ADT, several mobile app developers continue using Eclipse for creating Android applications. This IDE comes in various versions, which includes many tailored for Java EE, Java, C/C++ & PHP.
- Runs on: System supporting Java, Windows, Linux and macOS.
- Support for various languages & operating systems
- Huge customization options
- Big plug-ins marketplace
- Integration with Maven, Git, and popular development tools
- Big community & user base
3. Android Studio
This is the only mobile development suite you can find on this list! Android Studio offers web developers the fast tools to build applications on every Android device possible. Android Studio IDE has had complete support for Kotlin, with their support for the standard components & Android templates too.
As there’re huge design similarities between the Android Studio & IntelliJ IDEA, this makes it simple for the developers to create mobile apps with such IDE. They’re out of box tools include search tools and code refactoring to seek out or find performance issues and version incompatibilities. One can do editing with their Drag-and-Drop feature, whereas Gradle looks after automatic assembly & generation of .apk. Programmers and developers can view layouts on various mobile screens so that they may control differing resolutions and sizes.
- Programming languages supported: C, C++, Java, Kotlin.
- Runs on: Windows, Linux and macOS
- Android Studio is quite helpful to run apps instantly.
- It includes a fast emulator that is useful for running any applications much faster.
- Has intelligent code editor.
- Remarkably helpful in developing applications for various devices.
- Allows you to connect with firebase.
Atom is the free & open-source editor for Linux, macOS, and Windows. This is highly preferred by a lot of developers for the clean interface, design, and excellent ecosystem of the community-built packages.
This IDE is primarily used for web development and is created by GitHub founder Chris Wanstrath. This is 100% free & open-source IDE and can be used for Linux, Windows, and macOS. This is customizable and has several useful plugins too. The primary benefit of Atom is it has an attractive interface, colour-coded syntax and more. But one disadvantage is it suffers from the start-up time.
- Runs on: Linux, macOS, and Windows.
- Syntax checking
- Autocomplete is included in their IDE packages.
- Move the cursor to variable and highlight references of the variable.
- Find references that show you references of the class and variable.
5. Sublime Text
Sublime text editor IDE has become a popular Integrated development environment (IDE) in modern times. There’re a lot of advanced functions that are added within the editor and the editors are very useful for developers and programmers.
This is the cross-platform & open-source IDE that you can use for many languages. Moreover, common markup languages support the editor. The IDE was written in Python and C++ programming languages and was developed by Sublime HQ in 2008.
- Programming languages supported: C++ & Python.
- Runs on: macOS, Linux, and Windows
- The text editor provides auto-completion.
- Within the editor, you may jump your cursor and go anywhere.
- Select multiple codes, words, or columns.
Vim is a configurable text editor made for creating or changing any type of text efficiently. Support of Kotlin can easily be added to Vim just by using Kotlin Plugin. Vim IDE is made with help of the C programming language. This is considered as an improved version of the VI code editor & is recommended for Unix systems.
Without any doubt, Vim is the oldest editor on the list around 26 years old. Though it may be simple to get totally lost in Vim, certainly there is one reason why this IDE has remained quite popular as various technologies come and go.
The ubiquitous option is configurable and makes it simple for the developers and programmers to adapt to any problem, which comes in their way. It’s quite valuable for programmers and thus it is known as the programmer’s editor.
- Programming languages supported: Perl and Python.
- Runs on: Windows, Linux, and macOS
- Command-centric editor
- Many plugins available in this IDE and beneficial for programmers
- Supportive on multiple windows
- Supports multiple buffers
7. Visual Studio Code
Visual Studio Code is a prominent editor & IDE for developers and programmers. Most of the programmers make use of this editor to create codes. This is an open-source editor that you can use easily and was made by Microsoft.
- Runs on: Windows, macOS, Linux.
- It is the fast source code.
- Supports hundreds of languages.
- Provides you features like bracket matching and syntax highlighting.
- Box selection snippet comes embedded.
Each of the IDE mentioned in this post comes with its unique benefits, which probably suit the demands of different users. Thus, some developers might suggest other tools that are based on the requirements and experience. But, developers’ experience & research recommend these are the top IDEs available right now in the market.
However, as use of the Android applications continues to increase, new platforms are going to emerge very soon. And, we should be ready for such changes.