If you are a startup founder or someone who intends to build an application, your journey typically starts with a bright idea. This is usually followed by feedback sessions with your potential customers to validate your idea. Once you are confident, you can go ahead with actual development… But this is usually where the problem lies.
For most startup founders, choosing the right technology stack for building your mobile application is a big challenge. Friends and colleagues end up suggesting multiple options that leave you more confused than before. The internet can further confuse you as it bombards you with unending suggestions and information.
Choosing the wrong technology can lead to irreversible damage and a huge loss of money, time, and effort, which are crucial resources for a startup.
In this article, we will explore Flutter, which is a software development kit built by Google. We will understand the benefits of using Flutter and how Flutter app development could shape the future of mobile application development.
A Brief Introduction to Flutter
Flutter is an open-source, UI SDK (Software Development Kit) created by Google. Flutter was first unveiled at the Dart developer summit back in 2015. Google’s main intent with Flutter at the time was a technology that could render consistently at 120 frames per second. Flutter was originally called ‘Sky’ and ran on the Android operating system. Flutter’s first stable version was released in December 2018.
Google built Flutter with an intent to provide scalable and robust technology to make integrations with multiple platforms extremely seamless. Flutter offers rapid development for multiple platforms like iOS and Android platforms, Linux, Mac, and Windows using a single codebase.
Let us further understand Flutter app development and why you should hire flutter developers for building your mobile application.
A) Code Reusability
Mobile development usually follows two approaches:
a) Native mobile app development
Programmers need to code separately using a programming language for each operating system
b) Cross-platform mobile app development
Programmers code once and reuse the code for other operating systems
Flutter is a cross platform technology and thus allows code reusability. This means developers can use the same code to run on multiple operating systems like Android and iOS. With Flutter, you can use the same widgets and designs across multiple platforms. This Flutter advantage is a welcome sign for most developers.
Flutter building apps can thus enable startups to quickly launch application modules on multiple platforms so you can cover a larger customer base. Startups can save a lot of time and effort in flutter building apps.
As the market becomes more competitive every day, a robust technology like Flutter can help you stay ahead of the curve and develop for multiple operating systems with a single codebase. Flutter can also streamline the process of determining your app development cost.
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B) Widget Library
If you are a mobile application developer or have worked on building an app before, you would be well aware of the effort, time, and energy that is spent on building UI components for multiple platforms. Even for cross-platform technologies like React Native or Xamarin, the UI rendering is not full-proof and developers usually have to spend time curating the UI components for each platform.
Flutter is a game-changer thanks to its rich collection of widgets. Flutter comes with a widget library that includes everything from scrolling and fonts to navigation and icons. This contributes to convenience and ease of use in mobile app development.
Here is a list of some of the best offerings from Flutter’s widget library. With widgets, building UI components becomes extremely easy. Beginners can also quickly learn and start building through a simple drag and drop method. Developers can also edit or change widgets according to their desire, making the overall development experience extremely flexible. In this manner, Flutter for mobile app development becomes an obvious choice to make.
C) Perfect for shipping MVP’s
Startups are a high-risk business. If you are developing a mobile application for your startup, building an MVP (Minimum Viable Product) before actually launching your application could be a good idea. MVP’s are basically feature experiments or prototypes that you release just to make sure if you are heading in the right direction. Often, investors would ask you for an MVP before you commit time, money, and effort to build a full-blown product.
Flutter app is an excellent option to ship quick MVP’s and experiment with your product due to its rapid development potential. It could be the ideal technology platform to run tests with your core features and improvise according to customer feedback. This is among the top reasons to choose Flutter for mobile apps.
D) An Extension to Dart
This is one of the best, and innovative features offered by Flutter. While developing a mobile application, developers have to experiment with certain changes and eliminate them if they don’t work out. In such situations, developers have to program the code and then render the UI components to finally see their changes. Rendering is usually a time-consuming process. This delay makes it impossible for developers to quickly run experiments while programming.
Flutter’s Hot Reload feature breaks this restriction and makes development highly dynamic and fun. With Hot Reload, developers can see UI changes at run-time while they develop in parallel. This allows developers the freedom to try out their changes at the same instance.
While mobile app development, it thus becomes easy for your design and development team to collaborate as UI changes can be rendered on-the-go and trial-and-error experiments can be quickly performed.
The Hot Reload feature has become a favorite amongst the developer community and has revolutionized the way app development is handled. Both Android and iOS app development can benefit greatly by this advantage of Flutter. Further, it also improves application performance.
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F)Faster testing due to a single codebase
Testing plays a major role in your application development journey. In native testing, however, since developers work with separate codebases for different platforms, it can get tricky to handle bugs. Further, developers face a variety of issues for each operating system and tracking bugs and consistently keeping your mobile application stable might become difficult.
With Flutter as your framework, since you work on a single codebase, it becomes easy to track and resolve bugs over all platforms at the same time. This results in faster testing which can help you in building stable versions more consistently.
G)Great Community Support
Finally, it is important to understand that developing your own mobile application can be intimidating, especially if you are building one for the first time. The process might get lonely and challenging since you may encounter questions and problems daily. Solving these problems can be tedious and time-consuming.
Thankfully, Flutter is an open source platform backed by Google. This has allowed Flutter to build a massive community of developers from across the globe. Click here to check out Flutter’s official community support. It is a little similar to Native in this respect.
Flutter provides detailed documentation, tutorials, guides, and solutions. It catalogs problems that are being faced by developers around the world and records solutions that you can use as well.
Developers who choose Flutter for mobile app are also active on various social networks in the form of groups. You can be a part of these groups and ask your questions whenever you run into any problems. In a way, Flutter has managed to build a family over the past few years. This support that Flutter allows has helped many developers build applications right from scratch.
The way of the future
Flutter for mobile app development has garnered a lot of support in the last few years. The technology is exciting, flexible, dynamic, and allows developers much-needed freedom. The single codebase and the cross platform approach allows for faster development time. The widget library has made UI rendering easier and faster than ever before.
If you are planning to build a mobile application, the Flutter app offers you some of the best features that could make the development process easy and manageable. Besides faster development, you will be able to run quick experiments and progress according to your customer feedback. Hiring Flutter developers will help you save a lot of time and cost. Flutter will also help you test quickly and efficiently due to its singular codebase.
With a strong community, a seamless app design experience, third party incorporations and a reduced app complexity, Flutter looks like a strong candidate that could dominate the future of mobile app development. Flutter advantages also include a lower app development cost if planned properly. We hope this article gave you a better idea of what the hype is all about and the reasons to choose Flutter.