The recent years have seen an immense increase in the popularity of cross-platform mobile app development. It has been catering to the needs of many businesses with cross-platform app development, helping them save their efforts and time. Various tools have been developed to facilitate cross-platform development of apps with web-based tools like Xamarin, PhoneGap, and React Native.
Even though the opinions vary on whether Flutter is suitable for cross-platform app development, it offers a complete package of development tools, widgets and frameworks. This enables the app developers to get a better experience and also eases up the process. Flutter is a software development kit (SDK) for mobile apps, developed by Google to build mobile applications for the various app development platforms. Although Flutter is a comparatively new tool, it has already proven its importance in developing native apps using a single code base.
Apps built with Flutter are comparatively speedier than the ones built with other cross-platform technologies because it supports JIT and AOT compilers for building and compiling apps. It solves one of the biggest problems of mobile app development services which is to help all devices and OS versions. It can become quite a headache if you choose native app development or other cross-platform mobile app development platforms. Flutter has its engine and widgets that provide support for both Material Components for Android and Cupertino for iOS. Once you develop an app with Flutter, it will support all versions of OS and devices.
The hot reload feature of Flutter is one of the core aspects, which assists developers in perceiving any change introduced in the code in real-time. It eliminates the need to restart the app as the updated source code can be injected to the app when its running. Flutter automatically builds a widget tree which shows changes on a real-time basis. The benefit of hot reload is that the dramatically faster process improves development and helps developers in quickly identifying the bugs, no sooner than they appear. Eventually, testing of new features or UI without any hassle.
You can add Flutter to your existing apps too, instead of building a new one from scratch. If you want to explore the framework, you can import a Flutter module inside of an existing native app. Such a work environment enables more efficient app development, helps streamline the maintenance of different apps and new feature development. Flutter also makes it possible to reduce the cost to maintain the project and develop twice as many features. Native platform development requires developing app icons and minor tweaks which can be quickly done with Flutter.
Flutter’s main value proposition is to enable developers to design exceptional apps with native performance. And it delivers it by isolating almost everything within the engine from the native platform, including the UI components. It tremendously impacts the final performance because the costliest operation in cross-platform apps is switching between the framework and the native components. With the isolation, the structure can perform at full speed, delivering a native-like experience.
Now, since it doesn’t use native UI components, it needs a method to render UI on the screen. So, Flutter builds its UI by using an “atomic component”. It means the screen will display everything from the smallest possible building block. By utilizing widgets, it renders each component in a screen. Whether it is the simplest text to a full-blown animation, everything becomes a widget as each UI component inherits characteristics from a widget class and add its own functionality.
Flutter has an extensive library with all sorts of customizable widgets that enable developers to reuse, extend and customize them in any way. The way Flutter implements its widgets allows developers to manage layout components and their effects as a single entity. They also don’t have to worry about platform-specific behaviour as Flutter makes automatic adaptations to match the nature of each platform. So, if you are scrolling a list either in iOS or Android, you won’t need to implement one list for each OS. This is because Flutter’s list widget already knows which platform the app is running and handles that for you accordingly.
Since the widgets have the components and the animations of the layout in the same places, developers can embed animations or screen transitions directly in the widget tree. It eases the entire process of creating complex animations and makes it look like creating a button. Additionally, with a fast rendering engine, apps built with Flutter can now have any kind of animation with 60 frames per second. This also includes the whole screen, rotations, zooming capabilities, any other predefined animation. Flutter provides an infinite range of possibilities that enables developers and designers to create innovative layouts with custom stylings and exciting animations.
Flutter is getting the attention of many companies for building commercial apps. Cross-platform development tools have always been a popular segment that helps deliver lovable apps more quickly and efficiently than before. Whether you’re a developer or a team of developers, this new cross-platform development framework from Google is a programming framework to rule them all. 9series is a leading mobile app development company that develops cross-platform apps with Flutter. We build apps that work across mobile, connected products, and desktops with beautiful designs and features, allowing development & deployment of UI using a single code.