Kotlin Releases Jetpack Compose to Build Android UIs for Desktops

Kotlin Releases Jetpack Compose to Build Android UIs for Desktops

JetBrains, the creator of the Kotlin programming language, has launched an open-source UI framework for Android apps. The framework enables Android app developers to build UIs for Windows 10, macOS, and Linux. JetBrains has been working on the Jetpack Compose for Desktop, the UI framework, to make Kotlin even more attractive for app developers.

Kotlin is becoming an astonishingly popular platform, whether it’s native Android app development or cross-platform apps. It’s a rising star among developers, as some industry experts put it. Being a Google-endorsed coding language, Kotlin has proven its reliability over the past few years. With the addition of Jetpack Compose, the platform is likely to become even more widespread among app developers.

What is Jetpack Compose for Desktop?

Jetpack Compose is a modern framework for building native UI for Android apps. The framework simplifies and speeds up UI development for Android. You can quickly create a UI with less code and using intuitive Kotlin APIs.

Jetpack offers an array of functional advantages for Android developers. It’s an intuitive framework, and you need minimal effort to build the UI. Just describe your UI, and the framework will take care of the rest. With Jetpack Compose, you also need less and avoid potential bugs associated with coding. Besides, the UI framework accelerates your app development process. You can effortlessly use existing code and iterate faster using live previews. Jetpack Compose provides full Android Studio support.

Compose for Desktop gives you direct access to the Android APIs. It also features built-in support for Material Design, Dark themes, animations, and many other design elements. And you don’t have to worry about configurations. Jetpack lets you painlessly set up the development environment per your project’s requirements. Additionally, for Android app developers, the framework offers curated pathways of code-labs and videos for quick learning.

Google first announced the release of Jetpack Compose at its 2018 I/O conference. The tech behemoth released Jetpack’s alpha version in August 2020. Jetpack is said to be used by 80% of the top 1,000 Android apps.

What Compose Means for Kotlin Developers

With Kotlin support, Jetpack Compose aims to expand its reach beyond Android. The framework will now support all major desktop operating systems, namely Windows 10, macOS, and Linux. Since Kotlin is interoperable with Java, Android developers can seamlessly build app UIs to run on desktops.

The Android-to-desktop conversion program announced by JetBrains is still in the early stages. But once fully blown, it promises to help Android app developers to leverage Oracle’s Swing toolkit for Java. Using Swing, you can mix component elements and with regular elements and migrate an existing app to Jetpack Compose.

Jetpack Compose has also introduced early support for Apple’s M1 chip. It facilitates apps built on Compose to run on the new Apple hardware with native-like speed. Additional capabilities released by the framework include support for Gradle version 6.6 and 6.7 and better interoperability with JavaFX, among others.

An Evolving Development Environment

JetBrains has bundled the Compose framework with version 2020.3 of its IntelliJ IDEA. It’s the latest version of the integrated development environment. Whether you work with a Kotlin Android development company or as a freelance app developer, this framework is likely to boost your efficiency.

With this latest release, JetBrains has made it easier to build Compose desktop applications. The framework is built inside the Kotlin wizard. You can start developing your Kotlin app without having to write the Gradle configuration. Compose for Desktop also provides support for Android’s XML-based vector images. It enables you to render the images directly on your desktop app.

Wrapping up

If you are not a developer yourself, these updates still bear significance in terms of your app’s capabilities. Just make sure that you hire Android app developers who fully understand the nitty-gritty of these additions. As mentioned earlier, this Android-to-desktop project is still in the early stages and is likely to evolve significantly over the coming years.

At Android Developer, we continually rely on the most advanced languages and toolkits to build top-notch applications for clients. Whether you need a minimalist app or want to start a chatbot app development project, we have the right team and tools to address your needs.


Q. What is Jetpack Compose for Desktop?

Jetpack Compose for Desktop is Android’s modern toolkit for building native user interfaces. It simplifies UI development for Android app developers. Compose enables you to quickly build an app with less code, powerful tools, and Kotlin APIs.

Q. What is interoperability programming?

The interoperability of programming languages is the ability for two or more languages to interact as part of the same system. Frequently, this means passing messages and data between potentially very different languages.

Q. What is native mobile app development?

Native mobile apps are built in a specific programming language, for the specific device platform, either iOS or Android. Native Android apps are written in Java or Kotlin programming languages.

Q. How much does it cost to build a Kotlin-based Android app?

The costs of developing a Kotlin-based Android app depend on several factors. Design complexity, development time, type of features, etc. play a key role in calculating the costs. We develop feature-rich Kotlin-based apps at a competitive price.