Mobile application development has grown into leaps and bounds with an estimated 2 billion, smart phones across the globe, majority of them running on either iOS or Android. In order to reach more users, developers need to target both of these platforms.
Flutter also allows developers to re-use their existing Java, Swift, and ObjC code, and access native features and SDKs on iOS and Android. There are now more than 1000 packages those work with Flutter including SQLite, Facebook Connect, Firebase, shared preferences, GraphQL, and more. Finally, developers can build apps with Flutter using any text editor combined with Google’s command-line tools. There is also a Visual Studio Code plug-in for Flutter.
Benefits of using Flutter for cross-platform mobile app development:
With features like Hot Reload, helps you quickly build UIs, add new features, and fix bugs.
Expressive and flexible designs:
Flutter comes with a modern reactive framework along with rich set of widgets, animation libraries, and a layered, extensible architecture.
Access native features and SDKs:
Make your app livelier with platform APIs, 3rd party SDKs, and native code. Flutter allows you to reuse your existing Java, Swift, and ObjC code, and access native features and SDKs on iOS and Android.
Create high-quality experiences:
Create superior experiences across devices and platforms with portable, GPU-accelerated renderer and high-performance, native ARM code runtime.
Flutter is at present available only for Mac or Linux with Windows to be expected in future. While it allows you to develop for Android or iOS, you do need a Mac for iOS development with Xcode 7.2 or higher and to deploy apps in the App Store you need to be a registered Apple developer.
Installing Flutter is simple but it is just half the process. Once you install Flutter, you need to install further development tools. On Mac, you need to install Xcode 7.2 or higher and for Android development on Mac or Linux, you need the free community edition of JetBrain’s IntelliJ IDEA. Ironically you cannot use Android Studio which is based on JetBrain’s IntelliJ IDEA because the Flutter plug-in presently works only in IntelliJ IDEA and not Android Studio.
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