Why should you consider Flutter for your next mobile app?

Why should you consider Flutter for your next mobile app?

What is Flutter?

Flutter is an open-source framework created by Google. It is used to develop cross platform applications for Android, iOS & web from a single codebase. It also supports Linux, Mac, Windows & Google Fuschia.

Flutter is a cross-platform UI toolkit that is designed to allow code reuse across operating systems such as iOS and Android, while also allowing applications to interface directly with underlying platform services. The goal is to enable developers to deliver high-performance apps that feel natural on different platforms, embracing differences where they exist while sharing as much code as possible.

How does it work?

During development, Flutter apps run in a virtual machine that offers stateful hot reload of changes without needing a full recompile. This allows your app developers to work in an efficient way without having to constantly recompile to test their new code.

For release, a flutter app is compiled directly to machine code, whether Intel x64 or ARM instructions, or to JavaScript if targeting the web. 

The framework is open source, with a permissive BSD license, and has a thriving ecosystem of third-party packages that supplement the core library functionality.

When is Flutter a good option for mobile app development?

  • You need an iOS, Android with a single codebase/ hybrid approach
  • You might want to go beyond mobile in the short to medium term (ie web, desktop app, etc)
  • You want to build/release fast.
  • You are willing to either learn Dart or upskill your team to learn Dart. 
  • You don't want to rely on a bridging framework (ie React Native)
  • You want to leverage Google products. Flutter being a Google framework, they offer many modules/widgets ready to go.

Here are a couple of interesting stats/points about Flutter 

  • 91% of developers agreed that Flutter reduced the time it took to build and publish an app.
  • 85% of developers agreed that Flutter made their app more beautiful than before.
  • 85% agreed that it enabled them to publish their app for more platforms than before.
  • Flutter supports iOS, Android, Web, Windows, MacOS(intel and Apple Silicon) & Linux from a single codebase
  • Flutter is used by a broad range of clients (WeChat, Betterment, SHEIN, Trip(dot)com, Tabcorp, My BMW, Brazilian Government)
  • PUBG Mobile has started using Flutter for non-game UI. They have over 30 million daily active users
  • Today there are over 500,000 apps built with Flutter. (May 2022)
  • You can keep your existing native app and gradually build new features using Flutter so no need to start from scratch.

Anything else I should know about Flutter?

Flutter is becoming more and more popular in the mobile app development space however it is important to note that Flutter relies on Dart. Dart is quite easy to learn however if you are looking for a language which is widely used, this is not yet the case for Dart. It can be difficult to find Dart developers as it is still quite niche.

If you have an existing codebase built on React and are looking for code uniformity across your stack then a good alternative is React Native.

If you are considering Flutter for your mobile app, let's discuss this together as we've helped many companies pick the right solution based on their requirements and specific needs.

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Confetti Image from Rocket Lab - Sydney App Developers