Flutter vs. React Native

Stfalcon.com
10 min readSep 25, 2023

Let's start the analysis of the topic, which is better to select Flutter or React Native for work, it’s necessary to recognize where it all began. According to DataReportal’s Digital 2022 Global Statshot statistics & report, nearly 70% of people on earth utilize a mobile phone every day.

In other words, the lifestyle of modern people has shown the mobile application industry an extreme benefit. Therefore, accordingly, the case of developing the latter is still very appropriate. After all, Flutter & React Native, which were made by today’s technological leaders Google & Facebook, come into play.

We will discuss which is better to choose in this research, considering the following questions:

In this research, we will discuss the perfect choice, taking into account the next inquiries:

  • What is React?
  • What is Flutter?
  • What to choose in 2023: Flutter or React Native?
  • Final thoughts.

It’s important to underscore that in a period when an abundance of information about Flutter & React app development inundates the internet daily, we delve deeper. In this article, we will examine the significant distinctions between Flutter & React Native and explore what sets them apart.

So, let’s begin our investigation!

React Native vs. Flutter

The comparison between Flutter and React Native is not a new one, and it’s a topic that has been extensively debated. However, a definitive answer to the question of which tool is superior remains elusive. Both frameworks have their respective advantages and drawbacks, along with dedicated communities of enthusiasts. Our goal in this article is to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of Flutter and React Native, allowing you to navigate the intricacies of these hybrid technologies more effectively. With this knowledge, you may be better equipped to make an informed choice and select the tool that aligns with your preferences.

The comparison between Flutter and React Native isn’t, and it’s a subject that has been thoroughly discussed. Moreover, a conclusive response to the question of which tool is supreme stays elusive. Both frameworks possess their unique strengths and weaknesses, each accompanied by fervent communities of supporters. Our aim in this article is to provide you with an all-encompassing grasp of Flutter & React Native, empowering you to navigate the complexities of these hybrid techs with greater proficiency. With this knowledge, you’ll be better prepared to make an educated decision and opt for the tool that best suits your preferences.

What does Flutter mean?

When beginning to talk about Flutter, it’s necessary to say exactly that it’s a cross-platform platform for creating mobile apps or a portable consumer interface toolkit. It supplies devs with a complete software development kit (SDK) of tools & widgets.

When creating desktop apps with Flutter, you can collect Flutter source code into a native Windows, Linux, or macOS desktop app. And, for instance, Flutter’s web support provides the same process on the Internet & mobile devices. This means you can now create applications for iOS, Android, & a web browser from the same codebase.

Flutter, developed by the Google team and built on Dart, is both free and relatively new, making it accessible and easy to grasp. It offers a collection of custom widgets, all powered by its high-performance rendering engine. Notably, Google and the Flutter community actively contribute to its ongoing development. Consequently, Flutter can confidently be classified as an emerging technology.

In its initial iteration, Flutter offered a toolkit for creating mobile applications compatible with Android and iOS. As it evolved through subsequent versions, Flutter extended its reach to encompass support for various platforms. This expansion included Windows, macOS, Linux, web applications, and specialized platforms custom-built for Flutter use. Notably, the release of Flutter 3.7 in January 2023 represented a significant milestone. This update introduced a wide range of new features, such as an optimized rendering engine for iOS, enhanced support for Material 3 and iOS-style widgets, improved localization solutions, more efficient background data processing, and enhancements to dev tools.

What does React Mean?

React Native, on the other hand, is an open-source framework for mobile apps that utilizes JavaScript & was crafted by Facebook.

One of the most compelling reasons to learn React Native in 2023 is its platform independence. In the past, devs had to utilize Java predominantly for Android application development & Swift for iOS application development. Besides, there were other platforms like Windows, adding complexity to the process. React Native emerges as a perfect option for creating apps that seamlessly run on multiple platforms. With React Native, you build an app once, & it effortlessly runs on all major platforms. Additionally, React Native leverages JSX, which is familiar to those acquainted with React & is often defined as a blend of HTML & JavaScript. This familiarity makes learning React Native relatively straightforward, despite some challenging concepts. Compared to utilizing Java for similar goals, construction apps with React Native is notably easier & more efficient.

It should be highlighted that React Native is older than Flutter & boasts a larger community. Let’s keep reading!

The distinction between React vs. Native Flutter

Below, we’re gonna tell you about the advantages & disadvantages of both frameworks:

Native Performance Comparison

Flutter utilizes an Ahead-of-Time compiler, producing optimized code for iOS and Android after the project is built, ensuring native-level performance without the requirement to include the entire codebase in the application binary, a feature it has in common with React Native. Notably, unlike React Native, which mandates a bridge for interacting with native modules, Flutter communicates with them directly.

React Native boasts an enhanced JavaScript virtual machine that outperforms V8 thanks to its JIT compiler. As a pre-compiled framework, it enables any codebase to be deployed and compiled into a native executable. Typically, React Native achieves the same speed as native apps, performing at the level of iOS applications without requiring adjustments to iOS build settings.

React Native features a superior JavaScript virtual machine, surpassing V8 in performance due to its JIT compiler. As a pre-compiled framework, it facilitates the deployment and compilation of any codebase into a native executable. Typically, React Native attains equivalent speed to native apps, performing at the level of iOS applications without the need for modifications to iOS build settings.

Conclusion: Both Flutter and React Native boast high native-level performance, but Flutter communicates with native moduled directly.

Programming language

React Native utilizes the classic JavaScript programming language, which was the first language to enable dynamic web development.

In turn, Flutter utilizes Dart, which is a much newer language, since it was presented in 2011.

JavaScript appreciates a broader & more extensive usage compared to Dart. Consequently, devs often find it more familiar & comfortable to dive into React Native application development.

Conclusion: Both Flutter vs React Native programming languages have integrity, but React Native wins.

Reliability

Flutter could be the preferable option if your priority is to create mobile applications rapidly with a reliable platform. Conversely, if you’re looking for a well-established platform boasting a robust support ecosystem & potent UI abilities, then React Native may be the more appropriate choice.

Conclusion: Both React Native & Flutter are reliable, but React Native has a robust support ecosystem.

Building a consumer interface

The React Native framework stands out with its extensive and vibrant community, which surpasses Flutter’s in size. It provides a rich array of UI designs, libraries, thorough documentation, and numerous supplementary resources. Furthermore, React Native boasts a notably greater abundance of third-party libraries when contrasted with Flutter.

Conclusion: React Native is the best option for building a consumer interface.

Documentation

Flutter has a clear platform setup & IDE info for both Android & iOS. Even the command line interface (CLI) arrives with Flutter doctor, a tool to assist devs get set up.

Thanks to its open-source nature, Flutter is exceptionally customizable & flexible, enabling devs to prepare distinctive consumer experiences effortlessly.

React Native continues to develop with each new update. To stay educated, be sure to keep an eye on React Native’s official documentation & web resources.

Conclusion: While Flutter boasts comprehensive documentation, React Native is in a constant state of evolution.

Ease of installation

React Native installation is straightforward, but it generates packages, which may be seen as a minor inconvenience by some developers. However, this factor holds varying levels of importance for different users. It’s worth noting that React Native primarily offers UI rendering and device access APIs, relying on third-party libraries to complement its functionality.

Installing React Native is a straightforward process, though it involves the generation of packages, which could be considered a minor inconvenience for certain devs. It’s important to highlight that the significance of this factor varies among different users. Additionally, it’s worth noting that React Native primarily suggests UI rendering & device access APIs, depending on third-party libraries to enhance its functionality.

Flutter can be obtained from a small ZIP file, but then it must be added as a PATH variable from the command line. This makes things unnecessarily difficult.

Conclusion: React Native is much easier to establish than Flutter

Community

React Native predates Flutter & boasts a larger community. Also, the Meta team has had abundant time to refine the API & address underlying problems.

React Native has made substantial progress in terms of performance optimization and reduced memory usage by adopting the new JavaScript engine, Hermes, which has been the default engine since version 0.70. For more in-depth information on this, you can refer to the React Native blog post.

Also, Meta is actively working on several significant enhancements:

  • Lean Core: This involves decreasing an application’s size by relocating optional components or features to separate repositories, permitting devs to add them to an application as required.
  • React Native Fabric: A re-architected UI layer for enhanced performance.
  • TurboModules: These are aimed at improving the handling of native modules.

Conclusion: React Native now boasts a larger and more robust community backing when compared to Flutter.

Debugging

In React Native, debugging can be challenging, particularly when a certain exception or mistake appears somewhere in the native part of the app.

In contrast, Flutter simplifies the debugging process by offering tools that seamlessly integrate with Android Studio and Visual Studio, streamlining the development workflow.

Conclusion: Flutter wins this comparison.

Popularity

As of 2023, two primary hybrid app development frameworks continue to dominate the landscape: Flutter and React Native. Remarkably, the popularity of both frameworks continues to ascend. In 2023, React Native is favored by 42% of developers for app development, closely followed by Flutter, chosen by 39%.

In the current year, 2023, two predominant hybrid app development frameworks still hold sway: Flutter and React Native. Interestingly, the appeal of both frameworks continues to rise. This year, React Native enjoys the preference of 42% of devs for application development, closely trailed by Flutter, which is chosen by 39%.

Conclusion: React Native wins by popularity.

Let’s summarize the above in a table:

Let’s go on!

What to opt for in 2023: React Native or Flutter

When wondering whether to opt for Flutter or React Native, it’s important to note that there is no definitive or straightforward answer. Both options are viable choices.

As far as we can tell, React Native and Flutter have a lot in common & not a lot. The first and most significant fact is that both of them are open-source frameworks that anyone can utilize.

If you still have questions about the Flutter framework and whether it’s a suitable choice for your project in 2023, we offer you to read one of the studies on this topic.

Defining which tech is the winner in 2023 isn’t a straightforward assignment. Both React Native & Flutter exhibit a range of strengths and weaknesses. Flutter stands out as a swift and dependable framework for creating cross-platform mobile apps, suggesting access to an array of open-source libraries & a robust ecosystem of plugins. On the other hand, React Native empowers devs to create intricate consumer interfaces utilizing JavaScript & benefits from a vast & dedicated dev community.

Ultimately, the option between these two frameworks is probably to hinge on individual needs & preferences. If you prioritize a fast & reliable platform that facilitates swift mobile application development, then Flutter may be the preferable choice. Besides, if you’re looking for a well-established platform with comprehensive support & formidable UI abilities, then React Native could be the better option for your needs.

To Summarise

We trust that this comparison between Flutter & React Native has provided you with greater clarity and insights into these two frameworks. Overall, based on the extensive research presented, it can be confidently asserted that Flutter is a compelling option for streamlining mobile application development, potentially saving both time & money. If you’re considering mobile (or even web) app development for multiple platforms at the same time, we can assist.

The devs at Stfalcon are hard at work & very familiar with Flutter frameworks. All you need to do is let us know if you’re interested in such a partnership, fill out the form & we’ll contact you to discuss all the details. We are looking forward to our cooperation!

Originally published at https://stfalcon.com.

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Stfalcon.com

IT company designing custom web services and mobile apps. Our goal is to create useful and convenient software. We are the founder of the Air Alert app