When comparing Android Studio vs Visual Studio Code, the Slant community recommends Android Studio for most people. In the question“What are the best IDEs for Android development?” Android Studio is ranked 2nd while Visual Studio Code is ranked 4th. The most important reason people chose Android Studio is:
Android Studio is the software built by Google themselves to be used for Android Development. As such, it's certain that support for it will never drop as long as Android apps are still being developed. Studio is also the tool that Google recommends using for Android development and it's the IDE that gets updates related to Android first.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Officially supported by Google
Android Studio is the software built by Google themselves to be used for Android Development. As such, it's certain that support for it will never drop as long as Android apps are still being developed.
Studio is also the tool that Google recommends using for Android development and it's the IDE that gets updates related to Android first.
Pro Based on the powerful IntelliJ IDEA
Unlike its predecessor, which is based off Eclipse, Android Studio is build on top of Jetbrain's Flagship Java IDE which offers over a number of features. It's also open-source too (Community Edition only).
Pro Live code updates and renderings of app
Layouts are built and can be observed in real time and are automatically updated after every change. You can even see these changes on different screens.
Pro Extremely easy to integrate Google Services
Because it's made by Google to be the tool to be used for Android Development, it's also very easy for Google to add great support for their services in the IDE and make it easier to integrate Google Services into Android applications built with Studio.
Pro Pushes fast to the built-in emulator
Pushing to the built-in Android emulator can be up to 10 times faster than pushing to a physical device.
Pro Extremely fast preview
Since Android 2.0, Google have been focusing more and more on the IDE's speed, going so far as making it 2-2.5 times faster than older versions.
But the greatest feature when it comes to speed though is the new feature called "Instant Run". This is comparable to writing HTML, where you write the HTML and just refresh te page to see the changes. On mobile though, updating anything would take a lot of time for the system to rebuild.
Instant Run allows developers to build their app once (on physical devices, emulator or both) and as they change their code, AS does hot code swapping where it only updates the parts of the code that have been changed and the developer can see those changes after a second or two.
Pro Supports many platforms
Linux, Windows, and Mac are supported.
Pro Uses the powerful Gradle build tool out of the box
Android Studio uses Gradle as the official build tool for projects, moving away from the now outdated Apache Ant.
Gradle is a powerful build tool, especially for Android development with which it's very easy to do things that are otherwise impossible or very hard to do on other build systems, thing like: upgrading the build system without breaking the project itself or allowing you to separately define the development and production versions.
Pro Allows GPU tracking
For graphics-intensive apps or games, Android Studio has a GPU profiler baked in. With this you can see exactly what is happening inside the device when a new image is drawn on the screen.
Pro Intelligently replaces values
References are automatically replaced with their real values, so you can easily view which color you are using for example.
Pro Can test Google Play Services API straight from the emulator
Since the built-in emulator has Google Play Services like a physical device, you can test a lot of API calls without having to deploy your application to a device.
Pro It supports naked
Pro TypeScript integration
There is very solid TypeScript integration in Visual Studio Code. Both are developed by Microsoft and VSC itself is written in TypeScript.
Pro Extendable through plug-ins
Visual Studio Code comes fairly complete out of the box, but there are many plug-ins available to extend its functionality.
Pro Embedded Git control
Visual Studio Code has integrated Git control, guaranteeing speed, data integrity, and support for distributed, non-linear workflows.
Pro Integrated debugging
Pro Ready to use out of the box
You don't need to configure and add plugins before being productive. However, you can add plugins if needed but for the basics you're well covered.
Pro Integrated terminal
There's no need to press alt+tab to go to a terminal: it is directly integrated into the editor.
Shift+~ is a handy hotkey to toggle the integrated terminal.
Pro Great performance
For a 'wrapped' web-based application, Visual Studio Code performs very well.
Pro Updated frequently
There's a new release of Visual Studio Code every month. If you are one of the insiders then releases are daily.
Pro Integrated task runners
Task runners display lists of available tasks and performing these tasks is as simple as a click of the mouse.
Pro ESLint integration
ESLint integrates great. You can define your rules trough .eslintrc.* as usual and vs code will autofix your code on save. So your code is always in style.
Pro Active development
It's really nice to see how the code editor evolves. Every month there is a new version with great communication of new features and changes.
Pro Libre/open source
Released under the MIT License.
Pro Custom snippets support
Snippets are templates that will insert text for you and adapt it to their context, and in VSC they are highly customizable.
Pro Fast and powerful
VS-Code has the speed of Sublime and the power of WebStorm. Perhaps this is the best software that Microsoft has ever created.
Pro Huge community behind it
The ease of getting assistance and finding tutorials is increasing as the community grows.
Pro It has gotten really good
All it takes is one stop for all the features many people need.
Pro JS typechecking
It leverages TypeScript compiler functionality to statically type check JS (type inference, JSDoc types) with
Pro Python support
Excellent Python plugin, originally created by Don Jayamanne, now hired by Microsoft to extend and maintain the extension.
Pro Good support for new Emmet syntax
Pro High fidelity C# plugin
The Omnisharp plugin is very powerful providing full sln, csproj, and project.json support.
Pro Support RTL languages
It supports pretty web rtl languages like arabic languages when most of other editors don't support it.
Pro Inline definition picking and usages finding
These features allow you to have a glance at code without opening it as a whole in a separate tab. Moreover, editing is allowed.
Con Many errors that are almost impossible to remove
Gradle sync fail
Class can't be found
Update SDK (even with latest version)
Con High memory use
Con Many offline issues
Con Apps run slow on the ARM version of the emulator
While the Android team have recently fixed issues that had to do with emulation on an x86 architecture and greatly improving emulator speeds, emulating an Android device and running apps on an ARM architecture is still pretty slow.
Con Android development only
Android Studio is the official IDE for Android and it works great as an Android IDE. Unfortunately, that's the only thing it can do. If you want to develop applications for other platforms in Java, you have to learn another IDE as well.
Con The autocomplete and code check is not as powerful as the one on WebStorm
Sometimes it doesn't tell you if you made a typo in a method name or if a method is not used and several other important features.
Con Embedded Git isn't powerful enough
You can do nothing but to track changes, stage them and commit. No history, visualization, rebasing or cherry-picking – these things are left to git console or external git client.
Con Project search limits results
Because file search is so slow your results are limited in order to simulate a faster search.
Con Very bad auto import
VS Code is a general code/scripting IDE built to be lightweight and for people familiar with their language of choice, not directly comparable to Visual Studio in power or scope.
Con Memory hog
Allegedly, VS Code is "lightweight". Yet, running multiple instances of it at once, you may get many "out of memory" messages from Windows despite 16 GB RAM. (While of course also running other things. The point is the comparison with some other IDEs/editors where running them alongside the same number of other applications doesn't cause Windows to run out of memory)
Con Poor error fix suggestions
Error detection and suggestions/fixes are poor compared to IntelliJ platforms
Con A "me too" offering from MS, far behind other well established editors that it attempts to clone
Other IDEs specific to a language often offer better tools for deep programming.
Con Slow launch time
Than it's competitors, e.g. Sublime Text.
Con Emmet plugin often fails on even simple p tags
Con Have no good default js style analyzer
In WebStorm there is analyzer that checks for warnings and highlight this in yellow, here you cannot find or add it even with plugins. It is possible to have it as errors with linter but while you are actively changing file that's not very nice.
Con File search is extremely slow
It's absolutely not possible to use this tool with big projects given how long it takes to search for files.