Flutter vs React Native – which one should you choose and why?
Development of a Mobile App for both Eco-system Android or IOS is a basic necessity now as if not then you might be missing many users for your product. Development of Apps for both Ecosystems can be a tough task if your developer has not had very good familiarity with both of the ecosystems. Thanks to the Modern world we now have Cross Platform Mobile App Development Frameworks which can enable a Developer to write a code/ Business Logic once and ship to both or even multiple more eco-system just from one codebase.
In our Previous Post, Best Programming Language for App Development we discussed the best Programming language for Mobile App Development in extension to that in this article we’ll discuss
Which one is best among Flutter vs React Native`, two of the most famous Cross Platform App Development Frameworks.
Flutter is a Cross Platform App Development Framework developed by Google in 2017. Since then its popularity has been constantly increasing day by day due to its Open Source community and easy-to-use and install nature.
It targets Android, IOS, macOS, Windows, Linux, and Web from a single codebase taking dart compiler to create platform-specific hardware optimized apps.
Traditionally a Company would require multiple developers to build Apps for Multiple platforms, due to flutter it’s been reduced to One, and from just a single codebase, a developer can ship apps on all of the major platforms.
Advantages of Flutter
- Faster Development and Deployment: Thanks to the built-in feature like hot-reload. The compiler compiles the code at the time of development and displays the app preview while developing only.
- Quality Documentation: One of the most important things about Open Source projects. Flutter.dev is enough for a beginner to start developing projects as a beginner.
- Feature-rich UI: Components in Flutter is completely customizable due to every component in this is Widget and Widgets get painted on the UI of the App.
Disadvantages of Flutter
- Framework age: Dart and Flutter are very much young in the market, so they do not have any different use-case other than App Development.
- Dynamic Evolution: As it’s pretty much young in the market, it’s constantly evolving with the help of developers’ support. It’s the possibility that after a major update, there can be a breaking change in Flutter itself.
- Project sizes: We’ve already discussed that the flutter app comes packaged with all of the app components which can easily lead to huge app sizes.
React Native is a Cross Platform App Development Framework developed by Facebook back in 2015. Since then its popularity has been increasing day by day up to the point where its GitHub Repository was ranked as the top second repository in 2018 judging from its community contributions.
React Native was initially built from React library which is popular for its modern UI development for Web Apps. What makes it more popular is that any React Developer can easily develop React Native apps too depending upon the level of understanding of React.
If you want to learn React Native you first have to learn React to help you with that we already have curated a beautiful and interactive course React JS for beginners and Advanced React Concepts for intermediate react developers.
Advantages of using React Native
- Code Re-usability: Just like in React Project a Developer can reuse the components built previously with even further customization.
- It has an Active and supportive Community: As based on React itself many developers step up from just a React Developer to React Native Developer, which in turn gives the community better support by welcoming new Developers.
Disadvantages of using React Native
- Does not have many Components: React Native works on customization and it already has a huge set of components but when compared with Flutter it does not have huge pre-built components.
- Abandoned Packages and Libraries: Due to huge community support the maintenance of the Libraries and Packages is not possible. This is the only reason why most of the packages are left unmaintained by the community.
Comparison between Flutter and React Native
Now, we’ve got a basic introduction about what Flutter and React Native is, we can now focus on what’s the difference between them.
We’ll differentiate between both of them based on these factors:-
- Programming Language
- Installation and initial configuration
- Development tools and documentation
- User Interface (UI)
- Developers Productivity
- Community Support
With Flutter, The Developer has to use Dart programming language which is again developed by Google. Dart has many advantages, such as Productive App Development.
Learning Dart can be frustrating just for developing apps with Flutter, luckily Dart resembles C language also known as the Mother of all Programming languages, due to the syntax of most programming languages resembles C syntax only. Which makes learning Dart programming language easier for Java, C++, and other programming languages which follow OOPs concepts.
In contrast, Flutter doesn’t need any bridge to communicate. It has all of the components packaged with the app itself like the components and the various native code for UI. This is the very reason why Flutter apps are considered to be more stable when compared to React Native.
Installation and Initial Configuration
Installation of React Native is fairly simple, as it only requires React Native CLI installed globally alongside Nodejs. You can also use Yarn in place of Node Package Manager which comes bundled with Nodejs.
Installation of Flutter can be a tricky one. As it needs the zip file for you platform-specific should be downloaded and added to the path to be executable in your system. Installation is quite simple in React Native when compared to Flutter.
Development Tools and Documentation
Despite the low speed of Development against React Native, Many developers still prefer Flutter due to the good and rich documentation. Perhaps the only drawback of Flutter is that you’ve to go on the Website for the Documentation each time. But the documentation is well structured and for anyone.
While Flutter has UI packed within itself only, which means developing UI which is native to the platform is easy when compared with React Native. Also, Flutter has a huge component library bundled without the need for any third-party libraries, making it consistent over all platforms.
Developers’ Productivity and Community Support
React Native is an Open Source framework, the developers around the globe contribute to many reusable companies to speed up the app development process of a Developer, with the Hot reload feature built-in React Native the development of the App becomes super fast with quality in mind.
Flutter on the other hand supports the Hot Reload feature and with a huge amount of pre-built components, Flutter already gets what any developer would ever need. Flutter also being an Open source framework welcomes the community to contribute to flutter with even more amazing components with quality and stability as priorities.
There is no such winner here. It all depends on the use case of a developer or the need of the company. Every framework comes with its advantage or Disadvantage.
When to choose React Native??
If you’ve already a Web App setup and you just need to Develop an App for Android or IOS or even Desktop Apps. If you ever want to create an App that is likely to be large and deeply rooted, due to stronger and more extensive documentation. Due to its huge community, it’s likely to be a very good choice for your complicated but responsive Cross Platform App.
When to choose Flutter??
If your app is UI centered and you need a quick but clean UI prefer Flutter. With the help of Hot Reload and Dart compiler, you can easily build your MVP app within a short period with a clean UI.
Try out the Apps
Try out the Apps built with React Native
There are many apps in the market which are built with React Native, even some of them you’ve already used them:
Try out the Apps built with Flutter
Well, it might be the case that you might have not used the apps built with Flutter but wait, Haven’t you used Google Pay?? Yes, Google Pay is built with Flutter
Apps built with Flutter:
- Google Pay
- Google Ads
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- React VS React Native – The complete guide