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Table of Contents
What is the Flutter?
Flutter is Google’s free and open-source UI framework for creating native mobile applications.
Flutter is created by Google and released in May 2017.
Flutter is the newest framework to make a splash in the world of mobile app development.
This means that you can use one programming language and one codebase to create two different apps (for iOS and Android).
Dart was created by Google in October 2011, but it has improved a lot over these past years.
Why you should learn Flutter?
1. Simple to learn and develop
Flutter is a modern framework, and you can feel it! It’s way simpler to create mobile applications with it. If you have used Java, Swift, or React Native, you’ll notice how Flutter is different.
I personally never liked mobile application development before I started using Flutter
2. Uses Dart Programming
Flutter provides a widget based UI library, which is a set of UI elements (text boxes, image blocks, buttons, etc) that are used to create and personalize the application as needed. Think of Flutter as the front-end UI you use to develop the app, and Dart as the backend code that is automatically generated.
Dart’s internal rendering engine (called Skia engine) also compiles native code without the need of any additional software. This gives Flutter its hot-reload feature*,* which means changes are reflected to the front-end as soon as the code is saved.
3. Ideal for MVPs
MVP, or a Minimal Viable Product, is a minimal version of the final app. It is usually built to run beta tests through focus groups and to pitch the product to investors.
Here are reasons to use it for your MVP:
Develop a mobile application with Flutter because you don’t need to create and maintain for both Android and iOS
The performance of an app built on Flutter is on par with a native application
You can easily use widgets provided by Flutter and personalize it to create a valuable UI for your customers
The ease of use also reduces the number of resources (man and machine) needed
You won't notice the difference between a native application and a Flutter app.
4. Available on different IDEs
An IDE, or Integrated Development Environment, is software that provides the tools needed for application development.
Tools like a source code editor, debugger, compiler, interpreter, etc, are integrated onto a single program, the IDE, to simplify the process of software development.
The advantage of learning Flutter is that it has extensions for different IDEs, like Android Studio and Visual Studio (VS) Code, the two most popular code editors.
5. A growing Community
Google continually invests in improving Flutter and Dart. They recently released the Fuchsia programming language policy which stated Dart is one of the primary languages to build apps for the OS.
There are constant on-going Flutter events that bring the community together, helping developers grow and solve problems.
6. A Good Documentation
It’s important for new technology to have good documentation. But it’s not always the case that it has it!
You can learn a lot from Flutter’s documentation, and everything is very detailed with easy examples for basic use cases.
Advantages of Flutter
Flutter doesn’t need any platform-specific UI components to render it’s UI
Dart compiles into native code and there is no need to access OEM widgets as Flutter has its own. This means less mediated communication between the app and the platform
One of the most lauded features of Flutter is hot reload which allows you to instantly view the changes made in the code on emulators, simulators and hardware
Both Flutter and Dart are open-source and free to use, and provide extensive documentation and community support to help out with any issues you may encounter
Any updates are available to both the designers and developers in a matter of seconds. They do not have to wait for updates and can continue using the framework to develop other features with no interruptions
It improves the performance of the application as compared to any other app development platform
All you need to do is create a UI element once and it will adapt to different resolutions, screens, and platforms
All one needs to do is to test a Flutter application just once and save a lot of time and money for the developer
Flutter provides advanced OS features like GPS coordinates, sensor data collection, permission handling, Bluetooth, credentials, and other features in ready-to-use plugins that are supported by Google
Disadvantages of Flutter
The look & feel is not 100% the same as with native solutions. Basically, Flutter doesn’t create native components.
One big loophole that cannot be ignored is the large file size of apps developed in Flutter.
Flutter applications currently have problems with autocomplete input fields. This is especially noticeable if you need to implement password extraction from built-in or third-party password managers.
Third-party libraries and packages have a significant impact on software development as it enables some features for developers.
There are no single “guidelines” when it comes to developing Flutter apps, which can be problematic when building more complex software.
Flutter does not support Android TV and Apple TV.
Though Dart Language is suitable for Flutter, its challenging nature sometimes makes coding difficult. But, you can overcome this with the support of Java, C++, C#, and Objective-C.