Microsoft launches Visual Studio for Mac

Software giant Microsoft today released Visual Studio for Mac, its integrated development environment that contains all the tools you need to develop apps and games for the macOS, iOS, tvOS, watchOS, web, cloud and Android platforms. Previously, Mac owners who wanted to use Microsoft’s development tools needed a Windows computer or a virtual machine.

Available at no charge via, Visual Studio for Mac lets you code, debug and diagnose your apps, use version control, collaborate efficiently with other programmers and much more. The Windows maker released a preview of Visual Studio for Mac last November.

“Developers get a great IDE and a single environment to not only work on end-to-end solutions—from mobile and web apps to games—but also to integrate with and deploy to Azure,” said Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of the Microsoft Cloud and Enterprise group.

“Whether you use C#, F#, .NET Core, ASP.NET Core, Xamarin or Unity, you’ll get a best-in-class development environment, natively designed for the Mac.”

As a new member of the Visual Studio family, the integrated development environment allows developers on macOS to build apps for mobile, web, and cloud with Xamarin and .NET Core, as well as games with Unity.

Key highlights include:

  • Designed natively for Mac—Visual Studio for Mac brings the developer productivity you love to macOS. The experience has been meticulously crafted to optimize the developer workflow for Mac.
  • Collaborate efficiently—Manage your code in Git repos, hosted by any provider, including GitHub and Visual Studio Team Services. Share projects seamlessly with developers using Visual Studio across Windows and Mac.
  • Deliver quality mobile apps—With Xamarin’s advanced debugging, profiling tools, unit tests, and UI test generation features, it’s faster and easier than ever for you to build, connect, and tune native mobile apps for Android, iOS, and macOS.
  • Launch modern web apps—With support for ASP.NET Core in Visual Studio for Mac, you are empowered to create beautiful, modern web applications. Craft the front-end with the same web editor experience you know and love from Visual Studio and Windows and publish to the cloud directly from the IDE.
  • Create intelligent services—Visual Studio for Mac enables the creation of .NET Core solutions, providing the back-end services to your client solutions. Code, debug, and test these cloud services simultaneously with your client solutions for increased productivity.
  • Build cross-platform games—Using Unity and Visual Studio for Mac, you can create awesome games that run on any platform. Use the powerful coding, refactoring, and debugging features in Visual Studio for Mac to enhance your productivity.

System requirements are available in a support document on the Visual Studio website.

Microsoft says the software contains support for Voice Over. Many parts of the user interface, including the editor and solution explorer, have been made accessible through Apple’s assistive technologies.

The software released ahead of Microsoft’s Build 2017 developer conference, which kicks off later this week. In 2105, the company launched Visual Studio Code, its free of charge cross-platform code editor for developers.