In the rapidly evolving landscape of mobile app development, cross-platform solutions have surged in popularity. Among these, two standout contenders have emerged: Flutter and React Native. At Droids On Roids, we specialize in crafting apps for partners using a tailored approach, whether it be native development, Flutter, or React Native.
If you’re an App Owner, you likely have pressing questions:
With over a decade of experience in cross-platform development, we’ve compiled this article to share the insights we provide our partners. Our goal is to empower you with the knowledge needed to make an informed decision regarding the best cross-platform app development solution for your unique app concept.
We playfully refer to it as a “battle,” but in reality, both Flutter and React Native possess their own strengths and weaknesses. Of course, choosing native development for your app is a valid option as well. However, if you’re reading this, chances are you’re considering the tech options available for cross-platform app development. In this article, we’ll dissect these two contenders to simplify your decision-making process. But before we dive into the comparison, let’s briefly explore the history of mobile app development.
In the not-so-distant past, mobile app development was platform-specific, requiring developers to juggle multiple languages and tools. For iOS, it meant coding in Objective-C (later Swift) using Apple’s Xcode, while Android development relied on Java alongside Android Studio or Eclipse.
This setup resulted in duplicating code for an app aimed at both platforms, leading to increased development time, higher costs, and the challenge of ensuring feature and performance parity. Keeping updates synchronized was a constant struggle, often resulting in inconsistencies between versions.
The choice of framework has a profound impact on your app’s performance, scalability, maintenance, cost, and development speed. Making the right selection streamlines the entire process, guarantees a seamless user experience, and reduces long-term expenses. However, a poor choice can lead to a host of issues. In the following sections, we’ll help you determine the best cross-platform app development solution for your project by comparing Flutter and React Native.
Let’s start by covering the fundamental details about Flutter and React Native.
Flutter is an open-source UI (user interface) toolkit developed by Google. It’s often referred to as a Software Development Kit (SDK) or framework. But what is Flutter’s purpose?
Flutter empowers cross-platform app development by providing developers with a straightforward way to build and deploy visually appealing, natively compiled applications for mobile platforms (iOS, Android), web, desktop, and embedded devices—all from a single codebase.
When it comes to creating desktop applications with Flutter, developers have the ability to compile Flutter source code into native Windows, macOS, or Linux desktop apps. Moreover, Flutter’s desktop support extends to plugins, allowing developers to leverage existing plugins supporting macOS, Windows, or Linux platforms or create their own.
Flutter’s web support ensures that experiences on the web mirror those on mobile devices. This means you can develop Android, iOS, and browser applications from the same codebase. According to the official Flutter website, Flutter’s web support is particularly valuable in the following scenarios:
Additional facts about Flutter:
Flutter emerged as an open-source project developed by a team at Google. Consequently, both Google and the Flutter community actively contribute to its growth and improvement. To provide some context, let’s take a brief look at Flutter’s evolution and key milestones.
In the sections that follow, we’ll delve deeper into React Native and then compare Flutter and React Native across various crucial aspects. Ultimately, this will help you determine which framework aligns best with your project’s specific requirements and goals.