React Native vs Flutter is one of the most commonly asked questions today. This article explains the key differences between React Native and Flutter to help you choose which platform to use for your mobile application development project. If you’re thinking about using React Native or Flutter, then this comparison of the two platforms can help you weigh the pros and cons and make an informed decision about which technology is best for your needs.
What is Flutter?
Flutter is Google’s mobile application development framework for crafting high-quality native interfaces on iOS and Android in record time. Created by a team of former Apple engineers, Flutter works with existing code, is used by developers and organizations around the world, and is free and open source. Flutter uses Dart programming language for building native mobile apps.
What is React Native?
Advantages of React Native
Advantage #1: Fast Development and easy maintenance
Almost 95% or more of the code is cross-platform, meaning it is compatible with both Android and iOS, developers only need to build one app, and in the end, two apps are created. This saves time in the development of the app. In addition maintenance and updates are done on both apps at the same time which saves on future costs once the apps are built and launched.
Advantage #2: Performance
In the initial days of React Native release, there was a very noticeable performance lag when compared to the native mobile apps, due to which many companies and developers didn’t want to switch from native mobile app development to cross-platform. But, as time went on React Native matured, with the help of the dedicated and large community, React Native not only matches the performance of its native counterparts but sometimes even surpasses them.
Advantage #3: Augment existing React App with Native code
React Native allows to combine it with native code to augment the existing experience for its current users without the need to rebuild already functional mobile applications. This can be a boon when you just want to augment an existing app without fully rewriting it.
Advantage #4: Community
React Native has a very powerful developers community. Chances are if you are having an issue with something related to code, someone would already have that issue before and that developer can help you from his experience.
Advantages of Flutter
Advantage #1: One Codebase
Advantage #2: Simple and Flexible Layout
Flutter allows you to use a very simple and flexible layout system to build beautiful user interfaces. This is one of the biggest struggles that modern app developers have to deal with.
Advantage #3: Hot Reload
When we are developing apps one of the biggest pain is you have to run the app. Because often on IOS it can take anywhere between 10 and 30 seconds between saving your code, running your app, compiling it, and finally seeing it on screen. But when you are working in Flutter as soon as you update your code and you hit save your user interface will change instantly.
Advantage #4: Rich in UI Components and Built-in APIs
Flutter framework comes tied up with rich UI rendering components, device APIs, navigation, testing, and loads of other libraries. This means your reliability on third-party components will be very less as compared to Flutter counterparts.
When to use React Native and When to Use Flutter?
Both are leading mobile development frameworks today in the market as both are open source and are developed and maintained by leading companies: Flutter by Google and React Native by Facebook.
Flutter is still a relatively new development platform compared to React Native. But it is quickly gaining ground on React Native. We can surely say both these frameworks will be the giants in the mobile apps development world for a long time in the future.