WALTHAM, Mass., April 6, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Novell today announced the availability of Mono® for Android, the first solution for developing Microsoft* .NET applications for the Android* platform using Microsoft Visual Studio*. With the addition of Mono for Android to its existing Mono development tools, Novell is enabling Microsoft .NET and C# developers using Visual Studio and other environments to utilize a common code base to easily create applications for the industry's most widely-used mobile devices, including Android-based smartphones and tablets, Apple iPad*, Apple iPhone* and Apple iPod* Touch. According to statistics released by research firm Nielson, Android has a 29 percent consumer market share, making it the most popular smartphone platform. With Mono for Android, .NET developers and independent software vendors (ISVs) can utilize Visual Studio and their existing skills to build a vast array of Android-based applications and sell their products into this massive market. "Since the introduction of MonoTouch in 2009, developers have experienced how Mono streamlines mobile application development," said Miguel de Icaza, Mono project founder and vice president of Developer Platforms at Novell. "As a result, many asked us to build a similar tool for Android. We developed Mono for Android to give both individual developers and businesses a way of sharing their code across multiple mobile platforms, increasing efficiency and reuse of their C# and .NET expertise across the board." Mono for Android consists of the core Mono runtime, bindings for native Android APIs, a Visual Studio 2010 plugin to develop Android applications, and a software development kit that contains all the tools needed to build, debug and deploy applications. Developers trained in Microsoft Visual Studio can stay within their preferred IDE, while using their existing skills and .NET code, libraries and tools, as well as C# programming knowledge, to create mobile applications for Android-based devices. With the Visual Studio 2010 plugin, engineers can develop, debug and deploy their applications to an Android simulator, an Android device or the Android Application Store.