Logos of the Integrated Development Environment Microsoft Visual Studio on a heap on a table. Copy space. Web banner format.
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In a software development organization, the choice of the integrated development environment for projects is determined by several factors such as speed, cost, debugging capability, programming language support and ease of use. Visual Studio is one of the IDEs that has gained wide adoption for featuring almost all the above-stated capabilities.

Visual Studio is Microsoft’s IDE that offers developers a modern environment to develop cross-platform applications and innovative tools for sharing coding sessions within teams, cloning repositories and setting up workflows for deployment in the cloud.

Although Visual Studio might be one of the best IDEs around for developers, there are other quality alternatives to Visual Studio that can also support your company’s development.

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However, before we delve into the available alternatives for Visual Studio, below are some of the features of Visual Studio to bear in mind when you seek an alternative.

Features of Visual Studio


Visual Studio features a fascinating AI-powered code completion in their latest release. Almost every developer prays for a powerful code completion ability in an IDE. With this feature, software developers do not need to break a sweat in completing code lines. The AI-powered completion will identify your code context and help you handle things like variable names and functions according to the type of code you write.

Hot reload

Visual Studio also allows you to quickly rebuild and deploy every change made in the code base. This reload feature makes it easy for developers to create and deploy apps quickly. Apart from your code lines, the hot reload feature also works for changes in your CSS files.

Quick Search

Many files for different projects could sometimes be stored on your computer, making a manual file search tedious. Cutting down on the amount of time you spend searching for these files is every developer’s dream. Visual Studio has a feature that helps you quickly access your files for each project.

.NET 6 support

The .Net 6 is currently one of the most sought-after frameworks within IDEs. It’s a complete framework with multi-dimensional functionalities. The framework supports client, web and mobile applications in Mac and Windows operating systems.

64-bit IDE

As a 64-bit IDE, developers can now enjoy faster time in project loading and execution in the latest version of Visual Studio. This feature makes this tool a great fit for enterprise projects with many complexities.

Debug cross-language

Visual Studio also has a debugging capability to support a clean code base. You can easily view debugging information in the editor and use tips provided within the IDE to manage values and names of variables.

Version control

Visual Studio also provides flexible and extensible version control that supports team collaboration. An in-built GitHub extension and Azure DevOps integration support your remote operations on the IDE. There is also an option to add other version control providers by installing their extensions.

Top alternatives to Visual Studio


Xcode is Apple’s free IDE for software development. It is integrated with the Cocoa Touch and Cocoa frameworks, which give developers an edge in productivity.

Xcode contains a built-in Assistant Editor that offers useful codes in the side pane to help speed up your task. Additionally, the Xcode IDE has the right tools for connecting to Apple’s developer website. This implies that software developers can enable Apple services on the apps they create, publish them on the Apple store once they’re finished and then use them.


Apache NetBeans is a free and popular IDE that can be a perfect alternative to Visual Studio. NetBeans works seamlessly on most operating systems and offers some great features you might need to try.

For instance, NetBeans offers fast and smart editing and other intelligent features such as name and parameter suggestions, code folding, custom keyboard shortcuts and smart code completion. Additionally, Apache NetBeans allows users to view, add or update code templates within the IDE.


Google’s Firebase is a paid IDE that accelerates app development with a powerful toolset that helps developers to build, improve and scale their applications. The code-enhancing features in Firebase make it easy for developers to focus more on user experience. Developers can access integrated features like analytics, databases, authentication, push messaging and other powerful configurations. With the services being hosted in the cloud, you can easily scale your application to meet other needs when you deem it necessary.

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Developers can also rely on Firebase extensions to automate some development tasks. Some of these extensions include stream collections to BigQuery and running payments with Stripe.


OutSystems is a paid Visual Studio alternative that offers almost everything a developer needs to complete a development task easily. Widely regarded as a low-code IDE, OutSystems helps software companies to create, deploy and manage enterprise applications faster without writing many codes.

OutSystems also offers many capabilities such as real-time monitoring and reporting of app usage and performance, application scalability through APIs and full DevOps automation.

Syncfusion Essential Studio Enterprise Edition

Syncfusion’s Essential Studio Enterprise Edition offers developers a platform for developing web, mobile and desktop applications. This tool has a powerful user interface that makes your coding flexible and optimized for quality performance. With Syncfusion Essential Studio Enterprise, you have a framework that can assist you in creating functional UI easily.

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