Building for iOS, Android and Blackberry in Visual Studio coming soon

The Amethyst IDE for Visual Studio is about to get a major upgrade, with support for building Android, iOS and BlackBerry apps through Adobe’s Flex platform currently in beta.

Amethyst is a tool for Visual Studio which allows developers to use the tools they are already familiar with in Visual Studio to help build Flash applications. It comes with support for the Toolbox, projects, call stack, locals and everything you would expect from a full language integration with Visual Studio.

The company behind Amethyst, Sapphire Steel, is now working on bringing Flex support to Visual Studio too. Flex is a cross-platform system developed and open-sourced by Adobe which compiles a single codebase into native apps for iOS, Android and BlackBerry.

“We are pretty well advanced in our mobile support” said Huw Collingbourne of Sapphire Steel, talking to developerFusion. “Our aim is to remove as many ’steps’ as possible from the whole mobile deploy/debug process.”

“It really shouldn’t be harder to develop mobile apps than desktop or browser-based applications.”

Beta 2 of the mobile-supporting Amethyst release is expected in the next week or so, and brings a number of improvements over the previous release, including a wizard to kick-start projects and configure them easily for various platforms.

For more on the product, check out the demo on YouTube.

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