A few years ago the idea of having cross-platform apps to reach wider audiences was a pipe dream. Demand keeps rising and soon tools were released on to the market that could do exactly that. React Native is perhaps the most popular and well-known of these tools to create high quality and feature full apps that provide users with a rich user experience.
React Native is not the sole player in this game and a younger upstart has come to shift the balance. That player being Flutter, which while new has caused a lot of buzz namely for being created by Google . The article will look at some of the most popular apps that have been developed for both React Native and Flutter.
Developers will draw battles lines between the flutter vs react native camps, Flutter came out swinging challenging developers to adopt a new framework other than React Native. Developed using Flutter, the mobile app is a scaled-down version of Google’s Ads service and made mobile friendly. The app seamlessly allows users to follow up on ad campaigns when away from the office. Been able to check up on stats, budgets, and enable keyword editing on the move has proven a great tool for online marketers. It has also been a great use case for the possibilities of Flutter.
Created by a Danish duo, Reflectly has looked to change how we approach our mental health by creating an app that is essentially a journal for our thoughts and feelings. By using Flutter the app’s developers were able to reach a far wider portion of the world’s population. Giving both Android and iOS access to not only a journal but also insights from leading self-help experts to help during those difficult times.
React Native is most certainly the popular choice when it comes to developing a cross-platform app. This popularity is in part due to the usefulness of the framework and that Facebook were early adopters of the technology. The Facebook mobile app was designed and implemented with React Native. By using React Native, Facebook found that they only needed one team to convert the desktop application to a mobile one. It was also found that React Native allowed for quick version iterations, an obvious advantage.
The retail giant does nothing without a massive vision in mind, especially when improving customer experience. This is vital if the company wants to be the largest online retailer in an already competitive market. By developing a cross-platform app to work with both Android and iOS the decision was taken to use React Native. A year later upon release of the app, a significant improvement in performance was seen across the various platforms. A further advantage allowed the company to share 96% of its codebase across platforms.
React Native vs Flutter
When choosing which framework to use to implement a cross-platform app the debate will center around which one is better. Both come with pros and cons. For example, because Flutter is new there aren’t a lot of libraries for it. Other disadvantages to Flutter include that the framework is currently small, this is expected to change, and because the technology is new best coding practices are still been developed. Advantages to Flutter include that it relies on a single code base and Flutter’s widgets incorporate critical platform differences such as scrolling and navigation. This combined provides a fully native experience on Android or iOS.
React Native’s disadvantages include a lack of custom modules meaning developers might have to spend extra time developing a custom solution. Another disadvantage encountered has been certain navigation problems resulting from bugs which slow development affecting deadlines. Been able to hot reload, employ smaller development teams, as well as drastically decrease development time despite the disadvantages are all worth considering when choosing a framework.