The Future of Flutter: Mobile App Development in 2023
24 Oct 2022
We live in an age where there is a mobile application for everything. The increasing use of smartphones drives more and more businesses to invest in mobile application development and reach out to their target audience more effectively. As a matter of fact, mobile apps offer a myriad of advantages and beneficial features that websites simply cannot provide.
However, having an app developed for your business is not enough to successfully engage with your customers. You should offer much more than that - something that will ensure an easier and faster access to your services. To achieve this, your app should work smoothly and meet all the expectations of your users from all aspects - an eye-catching design, seamless flows, intuitive UI, easily manageable and customizable settings, and the like.
One of the first steps you’re going to take in this journey is choosing the right technology stack, which will be the main building block of your mobile app.
The selection is quite wide without a doubt but the one in question here is Flutter. The latter, despite being relatively new, is in the spotlight these days and there is no sign of this status changing anytime soon.
So, what’s up with Flutter? Why has it become so popular within a very short time? What are the advantages and benefits that it offers? Why do we believe it is future-proof? Let’s dive right in to find the answers to these questions and more.
On a different note, if you are on the business side of things, this article will especially come in handy for you as it will help you understand whether to outsource app development to a tech partner working with Flutter or not.
What is Flutter?
Being Google’s offspring, Flutter is an open-source software development kit (SDK) based on the Dart programming language and officially released in 2018. This technology is used to create mobile, desktop, and web applications using a single codebase. It is by far one of the best tools for cross-platform app development that will ensure a secure, well-supported, and stable life-cycle for your software solutions.
What Puts Flutter in the Limelight?
Such prominent names as Airbnb, Alibaba, Uber, BMW, eBay, and of course, Google, use Flutter in their mobile applications. Let’s have a look at the main advantages and benefits that make such big names choose Flutter over other technologies.
1. Single Codebase
Flutter essentially speeds up the mobile app development process with its simplified features and functionalities. Having a single codebase for all platforms is one of those. It allows developers to create code only once for both iOS and Android platforms.
This feature comes in handy not only for developers, but also business owners. It highly decreases the time required to develop your app, which in turn reduces the time to market. Here are a couple of other benefits that come with a single codebase:
- the amount of tests and maintenance to be conducted on your app is highly eliminated
- business efficiency and productivity are enhanced thanks to the lower cost for development
As you can tell, the single codebase is one of the main reasons why Flutter has become the go-to technology for developers and business owners alike.
2. The Best Choice for an MVP
Flutter is used by businesses of all size and scale but here is a small bonus point for startups - Flutter can be especially useful for companies on a tight budget because, more often than not, they tend to fail and cannot afford to dive into it all headfirst. The wiser decision is to start with an MVP (Minimum Viable Product) in order to save time, money, and resources while at the same time, getting some tangible results from their idea.
Having an MVP can give you vital insights into the results the final product could have in the market. You can gather the feedback from your consumers, look into the new features that they need, build a more detailed development plan, and form a client base with only the initial version of your product.
So, you use MVPs to test your ideas, services, or new technology with minimum loss but what is Flutter’s role here?
Flutter is the best and most efficient tool that you can use to develop your MVP. Let’s look at a few reasons why:
- Low development costs, as mentioned above
- Reduced time to market
- One-stop shop that contains all the tools you need for the development of your app. At the same time, Flutter makes it incredibly easy to integrate such prominent cloud platforms as Firebase and AWS that offer a plethora of features (analytics, authentication, hosting, cloud functions, crash reporting, cloud storage, etc.).
With Flutter, limited time and resources are no longer an issue.
3. Simplified Customization
Thanks to the single codebase, apps developed via Flutter are highly flexible when it comes to making changes or alterations. All the upgrades can be immediately seen both on iOS and Android.
Additionally, any issue that arises with the code, can be taken care of right away. This essentially cuts the costs of maintenance thus allowing business owners to spend their money on other aspects of their organization.
With Flutter you get a huge library of widgets made for various industries. The right widgets will make your app easy on the eye and will attract more customers. You can find a widget for about any functionality: scrolling, fonts, effects and navigation, to name a few. Not to mention that these widgets can be easily used across multiple platforms and layouts. What more could you wish for?
5. The Flutter Community
Flutter has quite the support, both from its creator, Google, and from the community of developers. This technology is not going out of use anytime soon for the mere reason that a giant like Google stands behind it. As noted above, Google has used Flutter in many of their products (e.g., Google Fuchsia) and will definitely keep developing and investing in it for much longer.
The Flutter community is also growing and is quite active with frequent face-to-face and digital meetups and events. The support within the community is also noteworthy - the dedicated developers that master Flutter’s nuances are there to help your tech team with knowledge-sharing when need be.
Flutter has solid animation support which greatly simplifies the creation of rich animated features. Adding animations to your software solution will still be a time-consuming task; however, with Flutter, the process is much easier than with native tools. So, if your app’s idea revolves around animations, you should definitely consider developing it with Flutter.
7. Safety First!
You should be mindful of your app’s security right from the start. It’s something you and your tech team should be in control of throughout the whole development process and beyond. If you have chosen Flutter for your future mobile app development, we have some good news for you. This tool detects potential vulnerabilities and sends you warnings way before any damage is done.
With Flutter, you can rest assured that your app is secured according to the best standards - again, Google is its “founding father” - couldn’t be any other way.
8. Improved User Experience
We have already established that Flutter boasts a vast amount of widgets which the apps operate on. As a result of this, Flutter apps do not communicate with the native components of the devices. This, in its turn, prevents in-app incompatibility providing smooth app performance and enhancing the user experience.
What else can help you gain a loyal customer base if not the seamless user experience of your app? Releasing it ahead of your competitors is out of question. Flutter can help you with both.
9. Enterprise Apps and Flutter
There is a common stereotype that cross-platform development is applicable for small apps alone. However, Flutter is here to prove this wrong. With its flexible features and regular improvements, Flutter has become suitable for any type of application.
An enterprise app is basically a large software system platform used in corporate environments (businesses, governments, etc.).
Flutter provides high efficiency, great user experience, and premium security in a single package combined with the above-listed features. Put simply, Flutter has everything that is required to create a quality enterprise app. Backed by a tech giant, with other business giants already using it (eBay, BMW), this tool is undoubtedly the right choice for apps of any scale and type.
Flutter News: What Makes Flutter App Development Future-Proof?
Google releases constant updates of Flutter, every time with better features, improved functionalities, and smoother performance. In May 2022, Flutter 3 was introduced.
“The culmination of our journey to multiplatform UI development on phone, desktop, and web”, says Tim Sneath, Flutter Product Manager at Google.
If the past versions of Flutter offered iOS, Android, Windows, and web support, Flutter 3 adds solid support for Linux and macOS apps. Now you can create apps for 6 platforms from a single codebase. This alone makes the future of Flutter quite predictable - it’s here to stay.
With over 500,000 apps already built on Flutter, this latest version with its new features is going to increase this number by another half a million sooner or later.
Flutter 3 also comes with improved performance and productivity updates. Not to mention the fact that Dart, which also belongs to Google, doesn’t fall behind with its regular upgrades.
Here are other important updates that may seem a little too technical but we cannot overlook them:
- More robust integration with Firebase. The source code and documentation are now moving into the core part of the Firebase offering. This means that developers will have a more powerful backend service and will be able to deliver apps that are richer in features and functionalities.
- Crashlytics, Firebase’s real-time crash reporting service has also undergone several updates. Now your tech team will be able to track errors in real time and ensure better stability and security for your app.
- Here is something for game developers. Flutter 3 comes with a Casual Games Toolkit to help you get started in game development.
Flutter is supported and refined not only by Google but by its huge community of developers as well. Thanks to the fact that it is open source, Flutter developers and tech geeks can all contribute to the development of this SDK. There are a number of ways you can do this - adding new code or documentation, writing books and guides, carrying out training courses, events, user groups, etc.
Flutter is used in the development of apps for all industries, from ecommerce and retail to banking and fintech, and more. Google continues its dedicated support and investments in Flutter whose popularity has been through the roof recently and is not fading anytime soon.
At VOLO, we are always in the know of the changes in the tech world and one thing that we are sure of is the longevity of Flutter. If you want to learn more about our Flutter development services or discuss an app idea that you have, feel free to drop us a message. Our team will gladly guide you through your development journey.