Unity and Android Studio on a Mac

by Andrew on January 17, 2014

Having recently acquired a Macbook Pro and being a relatively new user of Mac/OS X and having very little experience of *nix systems in general I thought I’d give keep track of any issues I have to overcome with my work/development.

So the first challenge, along with Unity (unity3d.com) that I use for development I want to be able to publish to Android. This requires having the Android SDK (software development kit) installed too. Normally this is no problem as you would install the Android SDK separately along with Eclipse IDE (integrated development environment) for separate Android development, now recently Google along with Jetbrains (well it’s really Jetbrains doing it for Google/Android) have developed Android Studio (android.com) based on their existing IntelliJ IDE, which while though in early preview is clearly the way Android development is likely to go for new starters.


What’s the problem with Android Studio? Well the application as installed on the Mac version actually has the Android SDK contained within the application itself and not obviously accessible to Unity. Now you could install the android SDK separately but that seems a bit messy and inelegant to me. The challenge here is getting Unity to see the Android SDK that is actually there in the Applications folder.

Assuming you’ve installed Android Studio in a normal way for the Mac by putting it in the root of the Applications folder the following should work without the need for change. I had to allow the install in the security settings as an unverified third party install but it will depend on your own security settings if you have an issue with that.

Open the Terminal program, this is the only command line you will need

sudo ln -s /Applications/Android\ Studio.app/sdk /Applications/AndroidSDK

This will create a symbolic link in Applications called “AndroidSDK” (you can change this to be whatever you want) that actually links to the SDK that’s within the Android Studio application.

Now in Unity in the Preferences under the main Unity menu you will find the option to browse to the Android SDK in External tools. Browse to the newly created link and select it as your Android SDK and now you’re ready to publish to Android from the Mac using only the new Android Studio IDE.




Unity Subscription Licensing

by Andrew on May 23, 2013

So Unity have announced a subscription licensing option https://store.unity3d.com/products/subscription http://forum.unity3d.com/threads/183365-Unity-offers-subscription, rather like Adobe’s Creative Cloud (which I am a paying subscriber to).


It sounded interesting until you look at the figures. With Adobe’s Creative Cloud you are getting a lot of value in terms of the software made available compared to buying the software. But with Unity’s pricing structure I can’t see the value in the current subscription cost.


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As you can see from the quick charts (based on what I paid for a Pro license and the last upgrade), even assuming an extremely frequent 12 month upgrade cycle (which would be pushing it) there’s not much to justify a subscription over time even if you wanted the latest upgrade. And as we consider more realistic upgrade cycles such as 18 months (which is still quite frequent considering the last upgrade cycle, 4.0,  came about 26 months after the previous, 3.0) the differences in license costs become even more pronounced.


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Of course it may be convenient for those with no capital at all who really need the Pro license but if that’s the case then be warned these subscription license costs require a 12 month commitment anyway! I have a feeling these costs will be revised since there’s not much to tempt people unless they don’t look at the figures properly.



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