Announcing Xamarin

Today we start Xamarin, our new company focused on Mono-based products.

These are some of the things that we will be doing at Xamarin:

  • Build a new commercial .NET offering for iOS
  • Build a new commercial .NET offering for Android
  • Continue to contribute, maintain and develop the open source Mono and Moonlight components.
  • Explore the Moonlight opportunities in the mobile space and the Mac appstore.

We believe strongly in splitting the presentation layer from the business logic in your application and supporting both your backend needs with C# on the server, the client or mobile devices and giving you the tools to use .NET languages in every desktop and mobile client.

Development started early this morning, we will first deliver the iPhone stack, followed by the Android stack, and then the Moonlight ports to both platforms.

The new versions of .NET for the iPhone and Android will be source compatible with MonoTouch and Mono for Android. Like those versions, they will be commercial products, built on top of the open core Mono.

In addition, we are going to provide support and custom development of Mono. A company that provides International Mono Support, if you will.

As usual, your feedback will help us determine which platforms and features are important to you. Help us by filling out our survey. If you give us your email address, we will also add you to our preview/beta list for our upcoming products.

Fighting for Your Right to Party

We have been trying to spin Mono off from Novell for more than a year now. Everyone agreed that Mono would have a brighter future as an independent company, so a plan was prepared last year.

To make a long story short, the plan to spin off was not executed. Instead on Monday May 2nd, the Canadian and American teams were laid off; Europe, Brazil and Japan followed a few days later. These layoffs included all the MonoTouch and MonoDroid engineers and other key Mono developers. Although Attachmate allowed us to go home that day, we opted to provide technical support to our users until our last day at Novell, which was Friday last week.

We were clearly bummed out by this development, and had no desire to quit, especially with all the great progress in this last year. So, with a heavy dose of motivation from my music teacher, we hatched a plan.

Now, two weeks later, we have a plan in place, which includes both angel funding for keeping the team together, as well as a couple of engineering contracts that will help us stay together as a team while we ship our revenue generating products.

Update: although there was a plan to get Angel funding, it turns out that we self-funded the whole thing in the end.

Next Steps

Our plan is to maximize the pleasure that developers derive from using Mono and .NET languages on their favorite platforms.

We do have some funding to get started and ship our initial products. But we are looking to raise more capital to address the shortcomings that we could not afford to do before, these include:

  • Tutorials for our various developer stacks
  • API documentation for the various Mono-specific APIs
  • Dedicated Customer Support Software (assistly or getsatisfaction)
  • Upgrade our Bug system
  • Training
  • Consulting and Support
  • and Marketing: we have a best of breed developer platform, and we need the world to know. Our previous marketing budget is what the ancient Olmec culture referred to as Zero.

Stay tuned for more, meanwhile, hope to see you in July at the Monospace conference in Boston!

Posted on 16 May 2011 by Miguel de Icaza
This is a personal web page. Things said here do not represent the position of my employer.