React Native vs Flutter, pros & cons?

Jul 10, 2019

Flutter vs React Native, both offer some of the best options for cross platform mobile development and both have some advantages and disadvantages over each other. To go through some of the pros and cons of each Flutter and React Native,

What is React Native?

React Native is a cross-platform framework launched by Facebook. Earlier, this framework was used to create in-house applications. Later, a decentralized development model was adopted, and React Native was declared open source in 2015. It is based on React JS and Javascript to develop apps similar to native applications. Hence, the name – React Native.

Pros:

1.Use of Native UI components
2.Library of pre-developed components
3.Access to native features of devices
4.Highly reliable
5.Fast reload process
6.Can write platform-specific code

Cons:

1. Complex UI structure
2. Sticky navigation

Apps Developed

1. Facebook
2. Skype
3. Artsy
4. Vogue
5. Bloomberg
6. Tesla

What is Flutter?

Google launched its open-source cross-platform framework under the name Flutter. It is based on Dart language.

Pros:

1. A complete development package
2. Highly customizable and reliable
3. Support by Google
4. Fast reload process
5. Open source and free to use

Cons:

1. Size of application
2. Need native tools to create a build

Apps Developed

1. Alibaba
2. Hookle
3. Topline
4. OfflinePal
5. Hamilton

Although both frameworks are open-source and backed by large organizations, they are very different from each other in many areas. Major differences are Language, User Interface, Performance, Developer Support, Adoption, Stability, Corporate Support, and Popularity. Let’s go through all the points mentioned above, one by one, to understand the difference between these two hybrid platforms.

Language

React Native is based upon React JS and Javascript. If a business wants to develop a custom mobile app, then it can do so with ease if an in-house team is present and fluent in Javascript.

On the other hand, Flutter is based on Dart language – an object-oriented language based upon C launched by Google in 2011. Dart language is not well known to most developers, so the learning curve is more for the in-house team.

User Interface

As React Native uses native UI components of iOS and Android with the help of 3rd party libraries, so it behaves the same as a native application. React Native enables a mobile app development company to deliver code specific to a single platform and have full control of the application life cycle and optimization.

On the other hand, the Flutter user interface is based on widgets, which are customizable as per the need of an application. Due to the use of widgets, there is no control over the mobile app life cycle.

Performance

Flutter uses the Dart language, which is based on C language. There is direct communication between the application and device hardware. There is no bridge or 3rd party library required to perform communication. Hence, Flutter is fast in terms of performance.

On the other hand, React Native is mostly for web-based applications, so it needs a bridge that will communicate with the application and device hardware. As there is no direct communication between application and hardware, the performance of the application is low as compared to Flutter.

Developer Support

Being backed by Google, Flutter has detailed and descriptive documentation, which enables a mobile app development company along the way. On the other hand, React Native documentation is not as descriptive as compared to Flutter. Support can be expected on some other forums, but official React Native is lagging in terms of documentation.

Adoption

React Native earned enough attention in the mobile application development industry and has support from most 3rd party libraries. More prominent applications like Facebook, Instagram, and more are developed in React Native.

On the other hand, Flutter is new in the mobile application development industry. But, if we compare the tenure spent by React Native, Flutter has more adoption rate as it is backed up by Google. Alibaba, Hamilton, and more are developed in Flutter.

Popularity

According to the Stack Overflow Developer Survey 2019 report, People voted Flutter as the most liked platform. So Flutter is gaining popularity rapidly with time as compared to other platforms.

As we read significant differences between React Native and Flutter, both have their own merits. You should select the best framework as per your project needs. You can differentiate whether apps need complex UI or need to use native device hardware like a camera or microphone etc. Based on this, you can choose the right framework for your needs.