App and game reviews by Mobilism's Android Reviews team
Feb 11th, 2016, 5:23 pm

App: DroidEdit Pro (code editor) v1.23.1
Developer: André Restivo
Category: Productivity
Price: $2.49 (Google) / $1.99 (Amazon)

DroidEdit is a robust text and code editor that strives to be a definitive solution for Android by offering a bevy of essential functions in a compact package that can boost productivity exponentially. By default, Android offers no reasonable method to create, edit and manage complex text-based documents in multiple formats with required features for production on the move. DroidEdit prevails and provides an experience somewhat comparable to the quintessential Notepad++ for the PC platform; both of which I use exclusively to generate and edit the text and formatting of these reviews. While DroidEdit lacks the modern appeal of Material Design, complete theme customization and impressive support for nearly any task far exceeds expectations and shadows any trendy visuals. As the app offers complete flexibility for a wide array of different applications, one doesn't need to be a programmer to benefit from the convenient ways it handles basic text files with thoughtful safeguards implemented to preserve them.

The interface is decidedly minimal with an uncluttered design that effectively hides more complex functions until the need arises to utilize them. Similar to Notepad++, DroidEdit uses a system that maintains each file available in a tab until you manually close it, while caching the contents safely out of reach. This means you can close the app without saving your work and the contents will remain, even if Android crashes or you reboot the device. Adding to this convenient security, SFTP/FTP support, Box, Dropbox, and Drive cloud services are available to load and save files directly, allowing few ways to lose your current work and to share files easily between devices. Full sharing capability is included to send your text files to others easily through whatever means your device supports. Infinite undo and redo, search and replace, bracket matching, go to line, auto and block indentation and previewing HTML files in the browser will also help bolster productivity and make editing much easier. Switching between tabs to access other text files can be a remarkable productivity booster as this greatly reduces searching and file opening time; miscellaneous resources can be recalled with a single tap of stored text files. Having several text templates conveniently loaded and readily available in DroidEdit creates a streamlined work flow with little hassle to jump into new projects afresh.

For a more productive coding experience, syntax highlighting exists for several languages such as C, C++, C#, Java, HTML, CSS, Javascript, Python, Ruby, Lua, LaTeX, SQL and more. Combined with the amazing and free Hacker's Keyboard or a Bluetooth input device, DroidEdit becomes a very powerful remote development tool chock full of time saving features. Git support lets you check out, edit, commit and push directly from your device, and Emmett will expand simple expressions into full fledged HTML code automatically. An extra keyboard line is conveniently available for those tricky coding symbols, and you may open and modify virtually any file on your rooted device. Writer mode will toggle spell checking and text prediction to keep the code uncluttered as coding and creative writing greatly differ in nature, but many keyboard shortcuts will accommodate both. External commands can be run through SSH, shortcuts can be created to aid in redundancy and the theme editor, font type and size will completely custom tailor the look of DroidEdit to suit your tastes and environment. Please note that DroidEdit is a fantastic tool for generating source code, but an external compiler is required to generate any executables or final products beyond text files.

In my tests with several keyboards, I had some issues with Flesky and SwiftKey using the delete key at times, being unable to delete previous characters. Either selecting and retyping that text or saving the file and reloading DroidEdit solved the problem temporarily, but seems to reoccur in some instances. Also, the copy, cut and paste buttons in the Flesky editing bar don't work well or at all at times, but using the standard Android editing commands fare well as expected. As those keyboard apps update constantly and worked well in the past, I would have to assign the blame to those individual products being the culprits as it also occurs in other editors I have tried using those keyboards. Also, by default, the keyboard will launch every time you start DroidEdit, which can be slightly annoying when you simply want to parse files without editing them. An option in settings to toggle this behavior would be more than welcomed as the keyboard takes up quite a bit of screen real estate as it launches. Additionally, large files can be a bit slow with syntax highlighting on, depending on the speed of your device, but this is to be expected as DroidEdit parses every line and there can be a lot to process. Even given these slight anomalies, there is usually a reasonable workaround to avoid most of these issues and the benefits far outweigh any minor incompatibilities or limitations.

As simple as DroidEdit appears to be at a glance, it offers a wealth of handy options and tools under the hood when you need them, and out of the way when you don't. Flexibility is indeed a key aspect with DroidEdit as it will handle creative writing projects just as well as complex coding tasks and nearly everything in between. If your projects combine both elements such as web-based applications and design, DroidEdit will accommodate your needs better than anything else I have found in the market thus far. For anyone who requires a proper text or code editor, or for those who need a handy way to access and manipulate multiple text files conveniently, DroidEdit is the closest thing to Notepad++ for Android, which is a stellar compliment in itself.

  • An extremely flexible text and code editor.
  • Tab system that retains multiple files by caching.
  • Full customization of themes, hotkeys and shortcuts.
  • Robust features and options to suit many applications.
  • Supports SFTP/FTP, Box, Dropbox, and Drive cloud services.

  • Additional cloud services would be nice.
  • Syntax highlighting with large files can be slow.
  • Incompatible editing functions with some keyboards.
  • Keyboard always launches upon startup with no toggle option.

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Reviewer rating: Image
Device/OS used: Galaxy Nexus, Galaxy Note 3, Nexus 7 2012, Nexus 7 2013 / KitKat v4.4.2, KitKat v4.4.4, Lollipop v5.1.1

Purchase at Google Play
Purchase at Amazon
Mobilism: DroidEdit Pro (code editor) v1.23.1

Feb 11th, 2016, 5:23 pm