Pros and Cons – Is Flutter Actually Good For Cross-Platform Development?

This is the world of diverse mobile technologies. And the mobile marketplace is changing at a dynamic pace. iOS and Android are the major platforms of mobile application development. The concept of cross-platform mobile development has revolutionized the complete process for businesses. Microsoft, Facebook, and Adobe gave a great go. Developers are looking for an efficient and light tool to create high performing app. Flutter is the best option for having multiple features. According to StackOverflow Developer Survey 2019, Flutter is among one of the most loved frameworks.

What is Flutter?

Flutter is Google’s mobile app SDK that lets mobile app developers write apps for iOS and Android with the help of the same language and source code. Presently Flutter is helping to build a new platform called Fuchsia that Google is creating.  

Moreover, this cross-platform has gained a lot of popularity in a very short time span. 

Flutter Succeeds at Cross-platform Development

Google development kit is creating 2D mobile applications. This can be used to create full-featured apps inclusive of support for cameras, geolocation, network, storage, and more. If impressive branded designs are in mind, then Flutter is the best cross-platform framework which should be considered.  

Google developers were working rigorously on Flutter. Here is the list of things they worked on:

  • Bug fixes
  • Support Firebase APIs
  • Tools
  • Enhanced documentation
  • Better engine performance
  • Android Studio and Visual Studio Code tools
  • Windows development
  • Multiple language support
  • Add-on features huge inline videos, charts, and ads.

The Comprehensive Ecosystem

Dart package manager lists approximately 2000 Flutter compatible packages coded in the current Dart version. The packages implement SDK for common APIs, although the offering isn’t as complete as for native apps. This clearly and unquestionably depicts that multiple third-party services can be integrated with Aflutter without extra code.

Flutter vs. Different Cross-platform Framework

Xamarin and React Native are the biggest competitors of Flutter for cross-platform mobile app development. Flutter resembles React Native and Xamarin in terms of concepts, but there is a lot of difference in the technical architecture.

Recommended Read: React Native vs Flutter – Choose Your Hero

Where Flutter Gains a Hand?

  • 2D mobile app support
  • Stock platform app development
  • Splendid and creative designs
  • Support for storage, camera, location, network, and more.

Pros and Cons of Flutter for Cross-Platform Development

Pros and Cons of Flutter App Development

Pros:

1. Compatibility with Different Operating Systems

First and foremost is the compatibility with multiple operating systems. The app having flutter experience has no issues related to the compatibility with different types of operating systems. This saves a lot of precious time of the Flutter developer that they spend on debugging.

2. Same Code, Different Platform

Coding once and employing it on both the platforms i.e., iOS and Android platform. Most importantly, special widgets and unique design on the platform make it capable of developing the same app to cater to a different platform.     

3. Detailed Documentation

Flutter’s documentation has made it a favorite platform among the developers. The clutter-free and simple details make the platform developer’s favorite. They don’t have to make an extra effort to learn the language. Furthermore, the document encompasses exclusive information and tools for cross-platform development.

4. Extensive Catalog for Open Source Packages

The large set of open source packages creates app faster with ease and there are plenty of packages available, making the complicated tasks easier. The package library continues to grow by leaps and bounds every day, and the credit goes to the growing popularity and interest of developers.

5. Supports a Variety of Widgets

Dedicated Flutter developers can choose from a number of Integrated Development Environment (IDEs) Android Studio and Visual Studio, to name a few. VS Code is lightweight, quick, having most of the features available in Android Studio and IntelliJ. There is no need to switch to start working on Flutter.

6. Receptive Frameworks

Having advance receptive feature. Flutter builds complex APIs of UI in a simple way. Moreover, the establishment of widgets and rich formats allow the developer to create 2D and UI animation. In addition, this futuristic cross-platform development tool is built to make high-end mobile apps for iOS and Android tailored to suit the business needs.

7. Perfect for MVP

If investors have to see the product, build a Flutter mobile app that looks native on Android and iOS. The clients then have a clear idea about what MVP looks like. Creating two different apps takes a lot of time and money.

8. Less Code

Flutter programming language is Dart. Dart is strongly typed object-oriented language that resembles React Native maybe because the programming style is declarative. Flutter doesn’t use JavaScript bridge, and this is the reason why it improves app start-up time and overall performance.

Apart from this, Dart uses Ahead-of-Time and Just-in-Time compilation that improves the workflow allowing the hot reload capacity. This refreshes the user interface during the development phase without developing a new build completely.

9. Access to Native Features

Camera & geo-location require native features access and Flutter gives the feel of developing on the native platform. It also allows reusing the existing Java, Swift, and Object-C code to access native features and SDKs on iOS and Android.

10. Easy Set-up

Flutter is easy to set up and coding on low-end machines. No need to think that any operating system will not be able to handle Flutter.

11. Flutter Excels in Faster App Development

Designing and developing go simultaneously. Sometimes, the designer makes an amazing design for a page, but when the development process started the output is not the same. This may be because of framework inability.

Last but not least, Flutter developers are able to see all the changes in the code immediately with the help of a hot reload option. Changes are seen within a second, so the development team has a good chance to add features, fix bugs and experiment.

Also, the development doesn’t have to be done from scratch. Hot reload enables better collaboration between developers as they can improve the aesthetic appeal and check the effects immediately. So, if you are planning for cross-platform development, hire Flutter app developers and kick start your project!

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Cons:

Flutter also holds a few limitations because the framework is still young and in its developing phase. The toolkit shortcomings are:

1. Mobile-Friendly Only

Flutter only caters the mobile applications. Desktop web browsers don’t support them, so when you choose mechanism, it is likely you have an impact on your decision. If you are looking for optimal device flexibility, Flutter is not a good choice.

2. Libraries Limitations

Flutter has various important libraries but because the framework is new, there won’t be all the required functionalities.

On the other hand, the native app has all the functionalities in the SDK. This includes Twilio, Stripe and services like Ustream and WoWza. Flutter developers have to develop these libraries and this is a time-consuming affair.

3. Continuous Integration

Native Android and iOS app have ready-made solutions, and this allows them to work with CI platforms like Travis and Jenkins. However, setting up a toolkit for these platforms is important.

4. Limited TV support

Apps build with Flutter are unable to run on Android TV and Apple TV. Well, Flutter offers no support for both the TVs.

Wrapping up

Google is paving the way for Flutter’s future as developers don’t have to compromise between productivity and quality. Although there are a few concerns of Flutter, giants like Alibaba and Tencent use it successfully. If you want to build apps on a budget, investing in the cross-platform mobile platform- Flutter is the best choice without a doubt.

Recommended Read: Top 8 Reasons to Invest in Flutter Development

Since the launch of the stable release of Flutter from Google and adoption by major companies, this framework is gaining popularity because of some of its killer features. The platform guarantees unified experience, reduced time and effort required to spend while mitigating the risk of errors.

Would you like to reduce your app development cost up to 60%? Choose the road to outsource and hire offshore developers from India!

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