What is Flutter? Benefits and limitations – An Informative Guide
The mobile app development market is evolving at a rapid pace, driven by massive tech advancements and innovations. A report states that “The mobile applications market size will grow at a CAGR of 18.4% from 2019 to 2026 and is projected to reach $407.31 billion.” With the increasing size of the mobile development market, a number of programming tools have also marked a severe jump. Flutter is one such tech-enabled mobile app development framework.
A lot many questions may hit your mind such as will companies accept Flutter despite having limitations?
Will it be able to fulfill the development needs of high-functionality apps?
Will it ever replace Native or other frameworks? Should native android apps be replaced with Dart?
Let’s delve into what flutter is and its benefits and limitations to answer all these questions.
What is Flutter?
Flutter is Google’s open-source UI framework for developing native mobile apps. The platform is used by developers to build cross-platform android and iOS applications with a common code base and programming language called Dart.
The flutter framework is built with both a software development kit (SDK) and the widget-based UI library. This makes the development process easy and fast, saving developer’s time and efforts to a great extent.
Benefits of Flutter For Mobile App Development
Google-based Flutter offers plenty of benefits to both developers and entrepreneurs that compels them to use the platform for app development purposes.
1 – Free and Open Source Mobile UI Framework
With this benefit at the end, Startups can use it free of cost, regardless of the purpose. The open-source feature makes it a user-friendly framework that is easily accessible by the active community of developers. It provides wide scope to the programmers enabling them to develop and design engaging resources. Furthermore, in addition to extensive documentation options, it also offers guidance to the community to address any issues they may encounter.
2 – Easy to Understand and Use
Effortless and easy-to-operate, this is what Flutter is!
It’s simpler to use as compared to Java, Native, or React. And while building native mobile applications using Flutter, developers are neither required to practice excessive coding or access OEM widgets nor any prior knowledge.
Furthermore, the user-friendly user interface makes the mobile app development process much easier. Utmost convenience improves user satisfaction and hence, draws the attention of more developers/developing companies towards the app.
3 – In-built Widgets
Flutter is built with an extensive collection of widgets that are quick, customizable. This makes the app more functional and creates a frictionless experience while using it. With widgets as their integral part, you’ll not face any compatibility issues while surfing on different OS versions.
4 – Fast and Seamless Development
Flutter’s hot reload feature instantly allows you to view the changes amended in the code on hardware, simulators, and emulators. Once the code is changed, it automatically gets reloaded in seconds without hitting a restart button. This makes Flutter a key app for quick UI development, adding engaging features and bug fixing.
5 – Reduced Testing Needs
The framework allows developers to build an app with a single codebase, both for iOS and Android. This implies less testing and assured results. Having only one codebase, developers conduct automatic tests just for once. Additionally, quality assurance experts are benefited from less workload as they have only one application to analyze, supervise.
6 – Enhanced Performance
Flutter ends up lending better performance for two main reasons – usage of Dart and extensive graphic library. Flutter uses Dart which compiles into native code and hence, doesn’t require to access OEM widgets. As a result, minimal interactivity between the app and platform makes it quite faster as compared to other frameworks.
Besides, Flutter has a wide variety of widgets that can be used by developers to create a complex UI. Having built-in widgets, the application maintains consistency and looks the same on varied OS versions.
7 – Supported by Varied IDEs
Flutter is available on several IDEs and is connected with IntelliJ and VS code as their main code editors. IntelliJ or Android Studio is a full-fledged software integrated with numerous efficient functionalities. It allows you to install Flutter and Dart plugins effortlessly. VS code is also configurable through several different plugins, making it a smooth developing experience.
Limitations of Flutter For Mobile App Development
Although Flutter has remarkable advantages, there exists a few issues that are yet to be addressed.
1 – Absence of Third-Party Graphics Libraries
Flutter does not consist of any third-party widgets and hence, it limits the developers to implement advanced functionalities to some extent. Although it gives interesting UI and user-friendly design, the lack of third-party libraries restricts the extensive development needs.
For instance, React Native has a large assortment of libraries which makes the development process swift, effective. Also, some graphics support only one platform which may disappoint developers overusing the Flutter.
2 – Time Consuming
As flutter is still new and does not consist of many libraries having essential functionalities, it becomes a time-consuming affair for developers. They are required to build the functionalities needed in applications by themselves, which can take a lot of time as well as effort.
3 – Unsupportive of Code Push
Code push is a function that allows developers to rapidly push patches to their apps without any need of accessing the app store release process. Such a feature makes bugs fixing an instantaneous task, lending a web-like uninterrupted development process.
Flutter doesn’t support the code push function, whereas frameworks like React Native and Cordova do.
4 – Limited Support
Some features of Flutter are not accessible by both iOS and Android. For instance, apps for WatchOS, CarPlay, or Android Auto can’t be built using Flutter due to restricted functionalities. If you are up to building these apps, you’ll need to develop them either with another platform or add native code.
The Bottom line
Flutter is leading the mobile development space ever since Google launched it. Overseeing various benefits and engaging developing features, the Flutter framework is the future of the mobile development industry.
It is one of the most advantageous technologies that allow development teams to build apps at maximum convenience without requiring much effort and costs.
With more developing companies shifting towards the use of Flutter, it seems an alarming element for native app developers that Flutter will probably lead the market soon.
That being said, if you’re planning to leverage Flutter in your mobile app development project, get in touch with us to ensure a smooth development of your project.
We, at Horizoncore Infosoft Private Limited, have mastered the art of Flutter app development, with a proven track record of building successful mobile apps based on the Flutter framework in various industries. To know more about our expertise & experience in Flutter technology, contact us at any time for consultation.