Mobile app development is the process when a mobile application is developed for mobile devices. Since smartphones gained popularity in around 2007 many programming tools emerged for developers to use. In the early stages, mobile developers were struggling with having to work on different platforms in order to create an app for Android and iOS. However, later on, many platforms were introduced that made developers’ lives much easier, those that allowed an app to be developed on a single platform for both iOS and Android. This is when Google took the floor and introduced Flutter in May 2017.

What is Flutter?

Flutter is a product of Google, created to develop apps for Android, iOS, Mac, Windows, Linux, Google Fuchsia and the web from a single codebase. Flutter is an open-source mobile SDK allowing developers to create native mobile apps with one code base and programming language. A Software Development Kit is one of Flutter’s two parts. These are tools that help developers build an app. The UI library with widgets is the second part of Flutter, that are customizable UI elements.

In order to develop Flutter applications developers must use the programming language Dart. Dart is an object-oriented programming language used to code on Flutter. Dart is much like C, so developers familiar with C or Java will not meet too many challenges in getting used to Dart. Overall, Dart is considered not only as a tool for mobile development but as a programming language as well.

How does Flutter work?

Flutter mostly focuses on its widgets, which enable developers to build the whole UI on. It has already developed widgets stored that fit with native Android and iOS apps, while developers can also create some custom widgets as well. As Flutter uses Dart, it keeps away from performance problems coming from using a compiled programming language that serves as a JavaScript bridge. This cuts the need of JavaScript bridge for Flutter and today it is also considered to be the single software development kit offering reactive views without the JavaScript bridge.

Flutter’s programming language Dart is mainly focusing on front-end development. It also includes stored software packages that allow developers to extend the potential of the apps. Some packages offer access to Firebase in order to build serverless apps, while others also help accessing a Redux data store, platform services or even hardware like the camera.

Flutter’s Competitors

Even though Flutter is not the only platform offering stunning capabilities for mobile app development, it does stand out from its competitors. There are many software development companies out there but the challenging part is to choose the right one. Some competitors of Flutter are Progress Kendo UI, Xamarin, DevExpress and React Native. These are only a few software companies competing with Flutter and despite the number of its all competitors, Flutter still tends to be confidently chosen by a huge number of mobile developers.

Flutter’s Brilliances

– Time-Saving

Flutter can be considered as a quick development tool for two major reasons. Firstly, Flutter is a cross-platform tool and this way it saves time as developers can use the same code base to build an app for both iOS and Android. Its cross-platform abilities play a crucial role in mobile app development. Secondly, software developers can bring the app to life in milliseconds with Stateful Hot Reload. Flutter also provides a rich variety of fully customizable widgets that allow you to create native interfaces in a very short time!

– Cost-Effective

Flutter is an easy to learn and use platform that doesn’t require a big number of developers to build an app. The quick development and small team give companies an amazing opportunity to develop a mobile app with limited resources and put in most features for less money. These advantages of Flutter allow companies and mainly startups to kick-off and effectively develop an MVP.

– Ideal for Startups and MVP Developments

When launching a startup and beginning the development of an MVP, the main target is to use the least number of resources and time to get the best result. In this case, Flutter cannot be more perfect than ever. Startups seeking to get a mobile app developed and present it on the following investment rounds should be aware of Flutter! It will save them precious money and time, while it does not affect the quality at all. An MVP developed on Flutter could not be differentiated by a native mobile application.  

– Performance and Productivity

Many people believe that as Flutter is not native it may have issues with performance but that is by far a false statement. Flutter is usually compared with Facebook’s open-source mobile development software React Native, while Flutter overcomes it in performance by a large margin. All-important platform variations, such as scrolling, navigation, icons, and fonts, are integrated into Flutter widgets, while the Flutter code is adapted to native ARM machine code that uses Dart’s native compilers. For scalable initiatives, Flutter mobile app development is the perfect solution. Considering that developers on Flutter can use a unified code for different platforms is fascinating in terms of efficiency, maintenance, and, most importantly, business-wise.

– Concise and Flexible UI

Flutter’s concise and flexible UI allows developers to ship features easily when concentrating on native end-user experiences. In addition to that, because of the layered architecture, complete customization is possible, resulting in extremely quick rendering and expressive and dynamic designs. Besides this, as Flutter has its own widgets this will lead to reduced compatibility problems on different OS versions. Since Flutter doesn’t use native widgets, whenever a new version of iOS and Android come out, Google’s Flutter will have to update their widgets as well in order to keep up, while developers can be confident that their apps will work on future versions as well.

Flutter’s Downsides

– App’s File Size

Flutter is a great software to develop mobile apps on, however the apps’ size in their final stage might be frustrating for some people. Sometimes this issue is more significant and forces mobile developers to choose a different platform. The big file size might not be a great deal of a problem for many users but still older devices are unable to store big apps and people might be struggling to organize their phone’s storage.

– Dart

Even though Dart is a great and easy to learn programming language for Flutter, some developers might be criticizing it for not being quite as good as other languages, such as JavaScript or Objective C. Developers will still need some time to get familiar with Dart and companies should keep this in mind too, when planning to develop a cross-platform app.

Why Is Flutter the Best for Mobile Development?

While considering Flutter’s both benefits and downsides, it is clear that it has more positive than negative aspects for mobile app development. Flutter is an amazing software to build stunning, high-performance and incredible cross-platform apps. Flutter is really worth considering when looking to develop an app both on iOS and Android in a short period of time and with reduced costs. Its expressive and flexible UI alongside its native performance allow developers to build an ideal app on different platforms.

Written by Luka Botchorishvili

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