Among the many technology options in the market for mobile development, native mobile app development has been popular for over a decade. Native applications are created exclusively for iOS or Android. Microsoft also promoted a wide range of new handsets that run on the Windows Phone operating system. However, they were on their way out as they had trouble building an app ecosystem like Android and iOS had. The key advantages of native applications are their smooth user interface and powerful, operating system-specific features. If native apps for iOS and Android are developed separately, this would take a lot of time, work, money, and resources.
As the market for native apps grew, companies wanted to reduce the time to market, costs, maintainability, and improve adaptability. Long-term gains for developers and business owners include getting reusable code supported by increased productivity and efficiency. This is where a cross-platform app development framework gains a competitive edge over other alternatives.
Cross-platform apps are created with the same codebase and can run on any operating system. The expenses and work associated with development reduce when code is written once and used across various platforms. Cross-platform apps are gaining traction due to the rapid advancement of cross-platform app technologies. They have gained so much popularity because of their quicker time to market, reduced cost, and adaptability to a wide range of platforms and operating systems.
Given the prevalence of mobile apps, app companies have started preferring cross-platform app development technologies over native ones. The two most popular technologies for creating cross-platform mobile applications are React Native and Flutter. Flutter and React Native are the top cross-platform mobile application development frameworks and share feature similarities. Both have numerous features, open-source frameworks, and the power to create nearly any application.
Use cases of React Native
- Simple cross-platform apps
- Quick prototype applications
- Apps with simplified UI
- Apps that look nearly native with responsive UX
- Apps with reusable components
- Stability (5+ years in the market)
- Many successful, prominent market players using React Native
- Mature, vast community
- Easy-to-learn technology
- Plenty of tutorials and libraries, which allow quick and easy development
- Code can be easily reused for both web app and desktop app development
Facebook, Walmart, Bloomberg, Instagram, SoundCloud, Wix
Google launched the open-source framework Flutter in December 2018, which works with the Dart programming language. It is a cross-platform software development toolkit that has an enhanced user interface. It enables the creation of natively performing expressive and adaptive user interfaces. Additionally, it receives support and contributions from the entire flutter community and several Google developers. The documentation for Flutter is more comprehensive, detailed, and user-friendly.
Google announced Flutter 2 on March 3, 2021, as part of the Flutter Engage online event. This significant upgrade introduced early-access desktop application support for Windows, macOS, and Linux, better Add-to-App APIs, and formal support for web-based applications with a new Canvas Kit renderer and web-specific widgets.
Use cases of Flutter
- Apps with Material and Cupertino designs
- Apps that function with OS-level features
- Advanced OS plugins with simple logic
- High-performance apps
- Flexible UI with high-level widgets
- Great look and feel thanks to rich widgets.
- Rapidly growing community, and popularity.
- Excellent documentation with strong support from the Flutter team (which makes it easy to start developing with Flutter).
- Improving Flutter for Web, offering the potential for one codebase across mobile and web platforms.
- Difficult to beat time-to-market length.
Google Ads, Tencent, Alibaba, eBay, BMW, Reflectly
Comparison - Flutter Vs React Native
Choose Flutter if,
Choose React Native if,
• Complete native capability is not necessary for your concept.
• Your financial and delivery schedules are tight.
• You want to write codes more quickly and get them out into the market.
• You wish to use less third-party libraries and components.
• Less testing and UI customization using widgets are required.
• Your concept does not need full native functionality.
• You want a more mature and stable technology.
• You wish to use cross-platform modules to scale your current apps.
• Your requirement is to develop native applications that are lightweight.
• You want to develop an application with a very responsive user interface.
• You have enough time and resources to dedicate to the project.
CCS team experimented and implemented both Flutter and React native for various customers and discovered that we can get similar outcomes from both. It's a tough battle between React Native and Flutter, with the younger generation leaning towards Flutter, though React Native is not lacking either. We help our customers by taking a technology agnostic approach and help derive the best choice based on business and solution needs.