Flutter development - hybrid apps for business development
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Faster and more efficient development of mobile and web applications. The platform is developed and supported by Google. It is a part of the latest multi-platform technology, which is becoming increasingly popular.
Flutter allows for creating native, cross-platform apps with the use of a single code base. It assures a smooth development process and a multi-channel user experience both for web and mobile applications.
Flutter is a software development kit (SDK) designed to create cross-platform apps from a single code base by using a modern, reactive framework. Flutter apps are built with the use of Dart - a simple object-oriented programming language.
The main point of Flutter are widgets. The entire user interface is a combination of different widgets, each of which defines a structural element (e.g., button or menu), stylistic element (e.g., font or colour scheme), layout part (e.g., padding) and many more. Flutter does not make use of OEM widgets but provides its own ready-made ones that look native to Android (Material Design) or iOS (Cupertino) apps. There is also a possibility to create customised widgets.
Efficient mobile development
The speed of development of user interface. As we have already mentioned, widgets and Hot Reload function allow for creating a project that is not limited by the technology. Because of the fact that Flutter provides a full control over interface design, a developer is able to quickly build an amazing graphic layer. The high quality of user interfaces is the same on iOS and Android platforms.
Flutter offers a wide range of features that can speed up the process of mobile app development.
Performance similar to native one. One of the main advantages of Flutter is its performance. The Skia graphics engine, which is used within the app, provides a possibility of smooth integration with the mobile operating system platform and rendering graphics quickly. Moreover, the Dart programming language uses its own widgets, which is why the application has fewer points of contact with the platform. It results in faster application launch and fewer performance errors.
Multi-platform development. It saves time and resources. The cross-platform programming provides a possibility of using a single code base to create apps for both iOS and Android. This feature allows for saving a budget. That is because Flutter is an SDK, so fewer developers are needed to create an application. Another important aspect is the saving of time with the use of hot reload function. The changes that are made in the code are visible instantly, which, in turn, allows for quick changes without having to restart the app. Free open-source toolkit. Flutter and Dart programming language are developed by the Google team and are open source. Google provides ongoing support for both of these technologies, and the tool community allows for extensive documentation. As a result, the application allows for creating beautiful and extensive apps quickly.
Access to phone functions. Thanks to the mobile device communication channels, the applications created with Flutter can use the address book, camera, Bluetooth technology, and GPS
Flutter has won the hearts of its users with the efficiency, uniqueness, and smoothness. According to the statistics, about 42% of programmers around the world choose Flutter. As a result, it has become the most popular framework for creating multi-platform mobile applications
Flexible user interface
Widgets are like fundaments in Flutter. Each element is a brick forming it. A widget may be visible, such as buttons or forms, and invisible (column or row) used to define the layout structure.
Building from widgets is remarkably similar to building from blocks, each element can be combined into larger segments. A big advantage of Flutter is that it offers a lot of ready-made components that allow for easy designing of beautiful applications.
Another advantage of Flutter is a possibility for developers to access the lowest code level, on which they can create new widgets tailored to the needs of a user. This is possible with the same tools that the Flutter team used to build the default widgets.
The widgets from Flutter are built using a modern development platform that draws inspiration from React. Widgets describe how their view should look like, with a view to their current configuration and status. When the widget status changes, the widget modifies its description.
There are two types of widgets:
- Stateless – which does not have its own state, so is unchangeable. It is not possible to change it while the application is running.
- Stateful – which may have a state of which it is dependant. Each time the widget status changes, it is rebuilt with a modification.
Flutter comes with a set of powerful basic widgets; the commonly used ones are:
- Text which makes it possible to create a stylized text in the app.
- Row, Column - which allow for creating flexible layouts both vertically and horizontally.
- Stack - allows for making a layer of widgets by putting them on top of each other. There is also a widget "Positioned" to be used on child items to position them against the top, right, bottom, or left edge of the stack.
- Container - which provides a possibility of creating a rectangular-shaped visual element. The Container can be decorated with BoxDecoration such as background, border, and shadow. It may also contain margins, padding, and size.
In addition to an enormous range of widgets, Flutter offers a Hot Reload feature that increases the productivity of the application development process. The Hot Reload function provides developers with a possibility to see the before-made changes in real time, which allows for faster and more accurate coding.
This feature assures quick and easily building of user interface, adding features, and fixing bugs. Hot Reload implements the updated source code directly into the running Dart VM. All the changes are applied during the operation. When the VM updates the classes with new field and feature versions, the Flutter structure automatically rebuilds the widget tree, allowing for instantly viewing the effects of changes
Dart - programming language
Dart is a programming language used in Flutter. It is compiled into a native code, which assures an excellent application performance, so that users are given a smooth, failure-free, and native application environment. What is more, Flutter applications work on different platforms using the same code, which speeds up the process of creation and development. From Flutter the native Activity or UIViewController can be displayed.
Dart is a customer-optimized language for quickly creating apps on any platform. The aim of its creators was to offer the most productive language for cross-platform programming, and a flexible execution platform for application structures.
Dart is also the basis feature of Flutter. It provides the language and runtimes that power Flutter applications. However, Dart also supports many basic development tasks, such as formatting, analysing, and code testing.
Dart has a rich set of core libraries, which provide the necessary elements for many daily programming tasks:
- Built-in types, collections, and other basic features for each Dart program
- Richer collection types such as Queues, Lists, Maps, and Sets
- Encoders and decoders for conversion between different data representations, including JSON and UTF-8
- Constants and mathematical functions and random number generation
- Support for files, sockets, HTTP, and other non-web applications
- Supports asynchronous programming with classes such as Future
- Foreign function interfaces to interact with C language libraries
- Simultaneous programming with the use of isolates
- HTML elements and other resources for web applications that must interact with the browser and the DOM (Document Object Model)
Flutter technology development
The first version of Flutter, under the brand name "Sky", was announced in 2015 at the Dart Developer Summit. It made it possible to create applications for the Android mobile operating system.
The improved version of Flutter 1.0 was released on Flutter Live, December 4, 2018. It allowed for creating applications simultaneously on various platforms (iOS and Android). The most important advantages of this version of the framework are smooth operation at the level of the native app and maintaining the status of an app Hot Reload.
In the 2.0 release, Flutter's creators introduced a stable null safety function, the result of using Dart 2.12. Web and desktop support has also been given a stable channel. Flutter 2.0 was succeeded by its next version, Flutter 2.5. The latest version introduced corrections and improvements to the framework and new text editing functions. Also, DevTools and plugins for Visual Studio Code and IntelliJ / Android Studio have been improved.
The version that is currently used by developers is Flutter 2.8. It has improved performance and accelerated the launch of the app. There is also a new feature for DevTools called “Enhance Tracing” that helps to reduce the number of bugs in the software. It is also worth mentioning that new versions of libraries created by Google have appeared in the current variant of Flutter.
Flutter - the future of e-commerce?
The rapid development of the e-commerce sector forces companies to look for innovative solutions and ways to reach the customer. The currently designed mobile applications use a number of valuable technological solutions. They have become a basic element of people's lives, due to the presence of smartphones.
Flutter can revolutionize the market and significantly reduce spending. A big advantage of the application, apart from its functionality, is the relatively low cost of production. This means that more and more, even small online stores can afford such an investment.
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