It is one of the most important tasks for a developer to design an easy-to-use graphical interface to deliver the best user experience to the client. This is why I searched the whole internet to find .NET components that satisfied my needs to build a great GUI without the necessity to write a lot of code. After testing lots of suites and tools from different vendors, I had a look at DevExpress's website – and I was astonished: all the things I needed to develop my applications in one place! Not only that they are handy to use and easy to configure, they also give me the ability to create eye candy applications in no time!
At once I redesigned all my older applications giving them a great look (I just love the new Ribbons in XtraBars!) – all this was done in about one day!
Example A. Ribbon Interface Created Using the XtraBars Suite
What makes DevExpress's components different from other vendors' tools is their ease of use: Just drag e.g. an XtraChart to the window you design, set the chart's type and data source using the wizard – and it is done. Like that you can design great interfaces in minutes without writing any code. As a developer, I want to concentrate on the functionality I have to implement and I really don't want to spend several days on creating the GUI – especially not if I can have the results I want in minutes using DevExpress.
Example B. Wizard Dialog Available in the XtraCharts Suite
Additionally, I don't want my applications to be similar to every other application available on the market. Using different styles is no problem with DevExpress components: Just create a new skin with the Skin Editor, save it to disk and apply it to your controls. They'll change their view automatically, again, without writing one line of code.
Example С. Skin Editor Application
I've tried several different vendors before I used DevExpress – and most of the time I was trying to figure out, whether a new bug was actually my fault – or if the buggy components didn't work as excepted. This stopped immediately after migrating to DevExpress: I never experienced bugs; the components did exactly what I wanted them to do and in a fast way.
Another cool feature of DevExpress XtraComponents is their ability to imitate the popular styles of e.g. Office 2007. This gives you the possibility to create applications that look exactly like the new versions of Windows and Office – just by selecting the appropriate value in design view. The client's benefit is a graphical interface that he or she is already used to, so there's no time wasted on becoming familiar with a complete new application design.
Example D. Office 2007 Look and Feel
During my development I needed a component that made it possible for me to display advanced statistics and reports (both numerical and as a chart) to the user – not an easy task. But with XtraCharts, XtraGrid and XtraReports this was no problem at all. XtraCharts provided fast and beautiful types of charts (ranging from 3D Pie to financial charts) – everything you need to present data. XtraReports included the great designer that makes creating reports an easy thing to accomplish – just as it should be. The possibility to convert reports written in MS Access or Crystal reports makes this solution invaluable. Again, this whole functionality is available without writing a single line of code, so I can concentrate on the functionality I need to implement. Combining these two components (and by displaying advanced numerical statistics clearly arranged in the XtraGrid component) created a really amazing interface that gives all the information the user needs on first sight.