DataPages

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The DataPages preview currently requires a Xamarin.Forms Theme reference to render.

Xamarin.Forms DataPages were announced at Evolve 2016 and are available as a preview for customers to try and provide feedback.

DataPages provide an API to quickly and easily bind a data source to pre-built views. List items and detail pages will automatically render the data, and can be customized using themes.

To see how the Evolve keynote demo works, check out the getting started guide.

Introduction

Data sources and the associated data pages allow developers to quickly and easily consume a supported data source and render it using built-in UI scaffolding that can be customized with themes.

DataPages are added to a Xamarin.Forms application by including the Xamarin.Forms.Pages Nuget package.

Data Sources

The Preview has some prebuilt data sources available for use:

  • JsonDataSource
  • AzureDataSource (separate Nuget)
  • AzureEasyTableDataSource (separate Nuget)

See the getting started guide for an example using a JsonDataSource.

Pages & Controls

The following pages and controls are included to allow easy binding to the supplied data sources:

  • ListDataPage – see the getting started example.
  • DirectoryPage – a list with grouping enabled.
  • PersonDetailPage – a single data item view customized for a specific object type (a contact entry).
  • DataView – a view to expose data from the source in a generic fashion.
  • CardView – a styled view that contains an image, title text, and description text.
  • HeroImage – an image-rendering view.
  • ListItem – a pre-built view with a layout similar to native iOS and Android list items.

See the DataPages controls reference for examples.

Under the Hood

A Xamarin.Forms data source adheres to the IDataSource interface.

The Xamarin.Forms infrastructure interacts with a data source through the following properties:

  • Data – a read-only list of data items that can be displayed.
  • IsLoading – a boolean indicating whether the data is loaded and available for rendering.
  • [key] – an indexer to retrieve elements.

There are two methods MaskKey and UnmaskKey that can be used to hide (or show) data item properties (ie. prevent them from being rendered). The key corresponds to the a named property on the data item object.

Xamarin Workbook

If it's not already installed, install the Xamarin Workbooks app first. The workbook file should download automatically, but if it doesn't, just click to start the workbook download manually.