These days, the market is full of well-established technologies with the new ones and Flutter is one of them. Released on the 4th December, 2018, it become more popular as compared to other app development technologies. The main reason for its popularity is its a new simple and productive approach to develop mobile applications. Numerous teams are thinking about it as a perfect technology for next app development project because of the advantage of of the native framework while being cross-platform. It can be used for developing apps for android and ios platforms.
The foundation teams and communities work on their constant improvement and develop new front-end frameworks that makes software developers’ work simpler and faster. Teams’ decision is normally determined by providing the users with the most ideal set of features and flexibility. And obviously, they are happy to take advantage of creating the cross-platform apps that look and feel like native ones.
Initially, this framework was made for the Android operating system. However, the main goal was the help of both major mobile platforms. The same codebase offers smooth performance and eliminates the need to make separate applications for Android and iOS platforms. This is beneficial for the developers and users who will have the better experience.
The first stable version, Flutter 1.0, with the help of the two iOS and Android was released on the 4th of December, 2018. Flutter toolkit includes a lot of features that make it the great cross-platform framework. It is preferred by the developers due to it’s smooth performance, focused on details and UI, and broadly supported by the developers’ community. Also, the team was exploring it to support the web. They created a few demos that effectively performed desktop and mobile browsers too. The results of the demos have proved that this framework is a great choice for web development also.
On the 7th May, 2019 the Flutter development team released the first technical preview of Flutter for the web. And, they reported development towards the desktop-class app implementation. It has just opened new ways for mobile app expansion. Here we will focus on Flutter for iOS developers since this is the most curious innovation in this technology and a large pool of iOS developers are looking at it as a potential framework for their upcoming project.
From the beginning, the framework is an open project that attracts more and more app developers which increases the community contribution. Generally, Google provides guidance and all important documentation for those who choose to use Flutter mobile app development. It releases the most recent updates related to the Material components, iOS widgets as well as App Store iOS SDK requirements.
Any Flutter application development company is focused on being capable of creating native-like applications though having all the advantages of hybrid ones. Flutter framework is based on Google’s in-house programming language Dart and this enables compilation to the native code of Android and iOS. Hence, Flutter mobile development can deliver distinct functionality and meet users’ expectations. To improve the Flutter’s development, Dart was recently upgraded to 2.3 and now includes significantly more cool features.
When the iOS developers began to work with this framework, they admitted the fast development process. Flutter offers a Hot Reload tool which is used for building UIs experimenting and adding features. The developers can observe the changes on the go that allows to fix the bugs immediately. The framework is capable of rebuilding the widgets automatically. The layered structure supports customization that results in flexible and noteworthy UIs. Therefore, Flutter mobile app development process is simpler and faster, while more cost-effective.
You can also know- Why Flutter is Setting the Trend in Mobile App Development?
Previously, this framework was known as a tool capable for working only with Google products like Chrome and Android. Everything changed when it was introduced as the cross-platform framework. The native-like performance, overall productivity for iOS developers and other distinctive features are admitted by the experts. To provide all these features, it uses the tools which vary from native iOS ones. Let’s try to explore more about what Flutter iOS development focuses on.
Know the features of Flutter 1.12 at- Flutter 1.12 features that will rule 2020.
1. Programming language – Dart
Initially, the Flutter application development is structured with an absolutely different way. iOS teams use Objective-C or Swift while it is based on Google’s in house programming language Dart. The iOS applications built with Dart perform the different functionality because this programming language is capable to compile to the native iOS code. It uses the unique structure which runs the code on the device in the Dart context. Hence there is no need for communication with native modules. It is characterized by simplicity and accessibility. In short, its engine owns everything for providing native iOS performance without including other approaches and meets all the requirements by its own structure. The team presents clear guidance and detailed documentation for their community.
2. User Interface development-
The UI building is a long decision-making process and similarly can be eased with the help of already created solutions. Apple supports UIKit to create powerful and fast interfaces. Whereas Flutter iOS development applies own approach where the widgets are used rather than UIView classes. Being immutable and lightweight, the widget can differ by their lifespan and are applied for building the complex UIs as a tree of widget instances. Flutter mobile development provides the design guidance by the Material Components library which is adaptable for both Android and iOS. Also, the Cupertino widgets can be used for Flutter iOS development.
3. CI and CD-
The Apple team provides the Xcode Server for native iOS applications. Also developers can integrate Fastlane and Jenkins just as other CI/CD frameworks. This framework offers Codemagic CI/CD approach. It was created by Nevercode with the end goal of no configuration. This implies that Codemagic promptly characterizes, builds, tests, and packages the mobile applications.
4. Hot reload-
Many mobile developers experienced that feeling when waiting takes more than coding. This is all because of required changes, recompiling, deploying to the device and bringing back to the point you make the change. Hence, the team has introduced the hot reload option. This tool changes the overall development process by allowing you to manage changes in the shortest time. Time required for change had reduced to milliseconds and hence the productivity increased to the great extent. iOS developers and designers prefers this option as a great solution for their collaboration and ideas implementation. Flutter for iOS developers also uses its own dependency management system and doesn’t rely upon third-party tools.
The testing of native and cross-platform applications will also vary. The XCTest is a special native tool with various features provided by Apple. However, the most cross-platform frameworks are known and chosen for the simplicity of testing, there won’t be the exemption here.
Google team provides Flutter Driver to implement the tests just as detailed documentation on it. This testing incorporates unit, UI, widget and functional levels. It can check separate processes and run on different devices like real devices, emulators and simulators.
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Flutter development has a lot of pros for both the engineering and business sides of any project. One of the big surprises is that Google is dealing with making it a fully-featured web and desktop framework for macOS and Windows. Hence, started as a mobile app will be easily turned into a web platform or desktop app by the same team. With such distinctive features, Flutter development has various advantages that we will be described next.
1. Fast development –
Clearly building one codebase will saves development time and resources. However, there is another thing that needs to be emphasized here. Developers admitted that a hot reload is a super valuable tool. It helps to manage the changes hence they are capable of adding, fixing and testing in a shorter time.
2. The free and open source-
Flutter app development has offered the opportunity for making new marketing approaches. This framework is accessible and free for use to any iOS developer. It is user-friendly and completely open to the community. Google provides users with multiple options and support. Hence, open-collaboration is a strong foundation for future achievements.
3. Impressive designs –
Flutter mobile app development results in attractive designed apps. The open collection of widgets allows structural, interactive and visual implementation. All these are categorized and effectively accessible on the official website as well as have clear guidance. The Flutter developer is capable to work on creating new or customizing the existing widgets.
4. Cross-platform solution-
This is extremely beneficial for companies and developers that need to manage one codebase for the both platforms. Flutter mobile app development doesn’t depend on a particular platform as it has it’s own design and widgets. It is one solution for two tasks that can be also differentiated when required.
5. Accessible documentation-
If you consider this framework relatively new, Google may amaze you here. It makes constant upgrades and encourages the new opportunities. You can easily find all documentation, recent updates, and the firmly supported community.
6. Easier to test-
Developing one codebase simplifies testing because it can be tested at once for both platforms. It is also possible to divide it after adding specific features. The Google team provides clear and updated documentation on each feature and Flutter Driver will help with checking your applications.