So, what is a mobile app development all about?
Mobile app development is the making of software intended to run on mobile devices and optimized to take advantage of those device’s unique features and hardware. There are mainly two operating systems in the market as Android and iOS. Considering these two OS platforms, app development gets split into two types as Native App development and Hybrid Cross-platform App development. Both Native and Hybrid platforms are having their own advantages but differ in cost and time of implementation/development. In this blog we are going to focus on hybrid cross-platform app development technology Flutter, as it saves cost and time of development because of single source code which runs on both Android and iOS devices.
Points to consider while starting an app development:
Mobile app development is a continuous process as typically, every six months or so, a new version of an operating system rolls out with new features that developers can utilize. Developing for a specific version of the operating system, or even for a native operating system, usually requires developers to try multiple solutions to find the one that suits their development needs.
There are few aspects we need to take under the considerations while starting for the actual app development such as Rich user experience, Database, Web API integration, third party library integration, application security. All these things are crucial for smooth app update with added new features.
Businesses these days need to make critical choices on their selection of mobile app development technologies. They are constantly testing and evaluating technologies to form powerful digital experiences, regardless of the user’s mobile device or operating system. Organizations that fail to produce products and services that are simple to use, regardless of channel or device, risk falling behind the competition.
Reasons to choose Flutter as a mobile development platform:
Cross-platform app development has always been a challenge for a developer because of wide range of devices and OS versions. In many cases, despite a developer’s exceptional efforts, the apps user experiences lags in comparison to that of actual native apps. In recent years we have seen the emergence of various mobile frameworks like React Native, Xamarin and Ionic that help make it easier to produce these digital experiences.
And then there is a new player entering the game — Google’s Flutter. It is based on Dart, Google’s in-house programming language, which gives Flutter access to the Skia graphics library — which is what Chrome uses.
Let’s see reasons to choose Flutter as a development environment or even to start off your career in flutter.
- Flutter overcomes the traditional limitations of cross-platform approaches.
With Flutter, you create a high performance, “native” experience because a Flutter is an app Ahead Of Time compiled (AOT – compiles before the application is deployed or launched), machine binary executable. It removes several of the normal challenges that go with cross-platform hybrid approaches.
- Frontend & Backend with a single code
Unlike in Android/iOS coding, where there are separate files for fronted (xml, xib) which are referenced by backend (Java, swift), Flutter uses a single language (Dart) which does both the job and uses a reactive framework.
- It is a powerful design experience out of the box.
Due to the Google Flutter team’s careful implementation of the Material design specification, it is easy to create powerful UI experiences right out of the box. It helps produce the smooth, rich user experience you typically only see with native applications because Flutter’s release build is a native application.
- There is an extensive catalog of open source packages.
The huge set of open source packages and plugins available helps you create apps faster, with ease, and there are a lot of packages current available which make many complicated tasks much easier. Although still relatively young, the package library is growing by leaps and bounds everyday thanks to an ever-growing population of developers actively contributing to Flutter.
- UI Compliance — Everything is a Widget.
In flutter everything is a widget, the Appbar, Drawer, Snackbar, Scaffold, etc. It is easy to wrap one Widget inside another to give this to do things like center something, by wrapping it in a Center Widget. This is all part of helping make sure your users have a nice experience no matter what platform they are running on. You should read the article from flutter as well : Everything’s a widget.
- Different themes for Android/iOS
Assigning the proper theme for a user’s platform is as easy as using a ternary if to check which platform the user is running on; allowing your UI to make run time decisions about which UI components to use. g) Animations are even easier using 2Dimensions Flare.
Google introduced during Flutter live 2018 summit, this amazing online tool can be used to create extraordinary UI or animations with ease. It fills the gap between the UI designer and the developer, reducing the time required to apply UI or animation related changes.
How flutter makes things easier for development:
Flutter has many built in features which makes it really cool technology. It saves a development time with hot reload/restart features and ready to use code snippets. Debugging tool is also powerful and analyze how the code behaves. Below are some cool and key features of flutter which makes developers life easy.
- Developers increase productivity ten-fold.
This Flutter’s productivity increase with the features called as “hot reload” (A.K.A. “Stateful Hot Reload” and “Hot Restart”. Together, these functionalities allow developers to see and analyze changes they make to the state of an app in no time; and changes to the app structure in less than ten. Time for development is always reduced by 30–40% compare to the android’s Gradle plugin which rebuild times that slow Android developers down typically take longer with every code change being applied.
- Flutter has support for a variety of IDEs.
When coding with Flutter you can choose from various Integrated Development Environments like Android Studio, VS Code, IntelliJ Idea, XCode.
- Continuous Support from the Flutter team & Flutter Community.
There is a lot of support and encouragement from the Flutter team & Flutter Community. You will find a tons of plugins and libraries on https://pub.dev/ and many other online resources are available for free.
- Flutter on desktop and the web.
Everyone was stunned by the revelation that the Flutter team now has prototype Flutter apps working in a web browser. The previously top secret project, “Hummingbird” was unveiled to the world during Flutter Live. Soon, you will be able to use the same code to create apps for mobile, desktop and the web with ease.
Resource: https://morioh.com/p/b576a71cb674 at Sander Horpestad post