How do I use Absolute Layout in Xamarin?
5 minute(s) read
Published on: Nov 04, 2021
Updated on: Nov 25, 2021
All UI frameworks contain some sort of layout system. Even if you don’t need to use it, it can be useful to understand how layouts work in general. The absolute layout in Xamarin, is the simplest type of layout. It allows you to place items on a page without any consideration for other items on the same page or other pages.
What is Xamarin?
Xamarin is an open-source, cross-platform mobile app development platform. It allows developers to share C# code across Windows, macOS, iOS , Android and Linux. The layout options available in Xamarin are Absolute Layout and Relative Layout. Which one should you use?
Here’s the differences between the two:
Allows developers to position UI elements relative to each other based on predefined measurements. When it comes to positioning UI elements relative to another element within the layout container, you can either use percentages or pixels.
Absolute Layout is a layout system that allows developers to place their UI elements, such as Buttons and Text Boxes, at specific coordinates on the screen.
It can be used to achieve an exact position for UI elements that would not be possible with Relative Layout alone.
The Absolute Layout is also different from Flexbox in that it does not interpolate between the four possible values of the Flexbox, "start", "end", "center", and "baseline".
Why Absolute Layout is Preferred?
An absolute layout is a type of web design that arranges the page's elements in absolute positions on the screen, regardless of the user’s preferences. They are often used for professional-looking websites where the layouts are set up to show designs with accurate dimensions and proportions such as eWorldTrade and many other b2b platforms. This layout style is also popular because it takes up less space than other methods, leaving room for more content.
So, why would you want to use an absolute layout? Here are some major reasons:
- It can be easier to implement than fluid layouts
- Easier to work with specific software like Photoshop
- Easy to build a responsive website from one code base
- Faster loading time
How Does It Work?
Let’s assume I have two pages, index.xaml and initializer.xaml. When you write a C# code in the project, the first page is imported and initialized. It’s either an empty page with no content or it has an active initializer. In the code, there’s an IBOutlet named navService. This IBOutlet has an initializer that’s invoking the initializer of the index page. When you call the initializer, the IBOutlet moves over to the page.
At this point, I need to tell the system what to do about the pages. Absolute layout does that. The system will remember everything and act accordingly for subsequent calls to the navigation service.
How To Use Absolute Layout in Xamarin?
Absolute layout allows you to easily place items on a page without any consideration for other items on the same page or other pages. The advantage is that items can’t overlap, or else your layout code will fail.
Here are some steps, which you can take to create an application using Absolute Layout.
Step 1- Make a New Project:
Create a new Visual Studio project. In the New Project dialog, select Xamarin – Framework for Windows and Android , for iOS or macOS, select Xamarin – Framework for Mac and for Linux, select Xamarin – Framework for Linux. In the dropdown menu at the top of the next window, select Xamarin.Forms.
Step 2- Add the Xamarin Forms Starter App:
In the New Project dialog, select Xamarin – Framework for Windows and Android, for iOS or macOS, select Xamarin – Framework for Mac and for Linux, select Xamarin – Framework for Linux. Now select the same project with the Microsoft Xamarin Forms NuGet Package, open the NuGet Package Manager window and navigate to the NuGet Package Manager Console by clicking on the “New > Package” button and selecting “Manage NuGet Packages” under Visual Studio.
Step 3- Make the layout file:
There are a few available layout formats in Xamarin. In this section we will work with a layout called Logo.
Create a folder and name it “Logo”
Create a new Xamarin.Forms file in it, let’s name it “Logo.xaml”.
In the new Xamarin.Forms file, create a new Class, we will name it “Logo Appearance” and in the line below you have to create the Logo class.
Step 4: Operating Main Activity Java File:
The MainActivity.java file represents the primary application activity of the project. This is the only file that you’ll need to modify to use the Absolute layout. This file doesn’t include any logic, nor does it contain any UI functionality. This file is best to be used as a template. The application templates were shipped with Xamarin Studio , and is the best place to start with.
On Windows, change the layout to Absolute from Relative by default.
The choice of which layout option is best will largely depend on the design you’re trying to achieve. Based on that and other factors, let’s have a look at Absolute and Relative layout in Xamarin.
Starting with Absolute Layout, you simply have to place everything in the layout you want to use and avoid the additional details. Relative Layout allows you to make a finer-grained adjustment in relation to your layout’s component. If your layout isn’t as constrained as Absolute Layout, you can use Relative Layout for better control over the layout.About our Android and iOS app development services