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Android Studio 2.0 zeroes in on improved workflow

Android Studio 2.0 zeroes in on improved workflow

A preview version of the IDE also highlights emulation and GPU profiling

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Fresh from a point release of its Android Studio IDE last week, Google on Monday will preview version 2.0 of the software development platform, which improves development workflows and emulation.

"One the most requested features we receive is to make app builds and deployment faster in Android Studio," said Jamal Eason, Android product manager, in a bulletin. "Today at the Android Developer Summit, we are announcing a preview of Android Studio 2.0 featuring Instant Run, [which] will dramatically improve your development workflow." Instant Run lets developers quickly see changes running on a device or emulator, Eason said.

Android Studio 2.0's faster version of Android Emulator has a new user interface that exposes common emulator actions in a toolbar, with additional controls in another window, said Eason. Users no longer have to solely rely on command-line options. For the preview, the Android emulator toolbar enables such actions as volume control, screen rotation, screenshots and windows zooming of the emulator window, said Eason. "You can also drag and drop APKs on to the window and even rescale the window by dragging the corner of the emulator window."

The GPU Profiler tool in version 2.0 makes it easier to profile OpenGL (Open Graphics Library) ES code in Android. The profiler is still in an early preview stage but shows details about the GL state and commands and lets developers record entire sessions. Developers can walk through the GL Framebuffer and Textures as an application is running OpenGL ES code. Developers who want to access the profiler have to download GPU debugging tools form the Android Studio SDK Manager.

Android Studio 2.0 preview is available in the Android Studio Canary Channel. A stable release is scheduled for early next year.

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