Google kicks off this new year with a stable release of Android Studio 3.3, with noteworthy enhancements and updates for developers who thrive for quality. There are no flashy new features but significant updates aiming to reduce the number of crashes, errors and memory leaks.
Android Studio 3.3 includes refinements in each of these sectors: development, build variants, testing and of course, optimization.
Android Studio’s “Navigation Editor” feature is now stable! The navigation editor basically comes up with a visual way to construct the navigation & transitions between various destinations inside an app. You can now specify the transitions among the screens using this visual tool. This navigation editor allows visualizing the entire application flow in a more comprehensive way as simple as drag-and-drop to link among the screens. To know more about how to use navigation drawer with navigation components, follow the instructions from this repo.
Ever got annoyed by the increasing file size when you try to build your past project with newer versions of Android Studio? Say no more! With Android Studio 3.3 and higher, a new dialog pops up to allow safe removal of the past installations of Android Studio. No, that’s not all! This release of Android Studio promises to help in cleaning unused cache directories and old configuration settings too!
One of the numerous headaches of the developers working and maintaining large Android application projects, includes build time and project sync time, especially if they have multiple build variants. After updating the IDE, navigate to Settings/Preferences > Experimental and under the section “Gradle”, check the box to enable active variant sync as the following suggests:
I personally get excited whenever I find out any line of code, if added to gradle.properties, makes my developer life less time-consuming! Whether it’s a Gradle performance factor like Build Cache, Parallelize Build Optimization or Offline builds, I always keep my Gradle config updated to reduce project build times. On top of that, APK size has always been a significant factor and hence, we always use code shrinking solutions to get rid of unused code and resources and thus, making the APK file size smaller. On that note, a preview of Google’s new code shrinker, R8, has been included in this stable release. R8 detects and removes unused classes, fields, methods, and attributes from a packaged app, faster than ProGuard:
Just add this one line in your project’s gradle.properties & off you go:
This version also includes 2 emojis in the bottom bar, used as sentiment buttons for those who share usage statistics to help improve Android Studio:
There are a number of minor updates, changes & added options in the optimization profilers too, naming Memory, Network & CPU Profilers to use these tools more conveniently. Head over to the Android Studio release notes andAndroid Gradle plugin release notes to give a quick read.
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