Bhavesh Parekh

5 months ago ·

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Flutter VS Kotlin: Comparing The Two Cross Platform App Development Technologies For 2021
 

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Cross platform app development is drastically reducing the expenses involved in mobile app development for companies. One of the major constraints tech businesses face is turning an idea into a tangible product and waiting for it to generate profits. Until the first download happens or the first in-app purchase happens, there are only expenses involved in the process.

With native app development, this was an even bigger challenge as companies had to invest twice to roll out their applications individually for Android and iOS devices. The same idea had to be developed two times with distinct development protocols and strategies with two dedicated teams. For those who stick to the same team to do the development process, their time to market goes for a toss.

From all aspects, native app development was chaotic for bootstrapped businesses and companies with no proper funding. However, this has been changing over the last few years since the launch of cross platform app development.

With this, developers have this superpower to develop an app once and tweak it for distinct operating systems. This helped developers minimize the development time by 50% and budget significantly as well. They also offered native-like experiences to users.

Cut to 2021, we are at the crossroads again, where the market is witnessing the presence of multiple cross platform app development tools and businesses and developers are having a confusion on what to choose for their projects.

If you’re one such developer or a business, this dedicated write up will clear all the confusions in the air and give you insights on what you should prefer in 2021.

Ready?

Let’s get started.

A Quick Introduction To Kotlin And Flutter

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Kotlin

Kotlin is a general-purpose programming language that is carving a space for itself in the cross platform app development space. Kotlin Multiplatform is the latest SDK that allows native apps developed on Kotlin to be converted into cross platform apps. The tool supports compilation of JavaScript, native codes and JVM bytecode.

Key Kotlin Statistics

  • There are over 137,000 apps in the market developed using Kotlin.
  • Apps developed on Kotlin have been downloaded over 328bn times.
  • Kotlin apps have a market share of around 17.12% of all the apps in the market.
  • Close to 80% of the top apps are developed on Kotlin.
  • Popular apps that have Kotlin include Instagram, Google Maps, Tik Tok, Google Photos, Microsoft OneDrive and more.

Advantages Of Kotlin

While developers are already familiar with Kotlin app development for native apps, here are some quick advantages of Kotlin Multiplatform:

  1. Kotlin is easy to learn and get used to. Developers getting started with Kotlin have a minimal learning curve as its syntax is very similar to other programming languages like Swift and Java. So, there’s absolutely no learning from scratch involved with respect to Kotlin.
  2. Scalability is one of the biggest advantages of Kotlin. Developers have the ability to scale their apps without using Virtual Machine, which paves the way for more efficient scaling and flexibility.
  3. Kotlin is robust and offers a native-like experience to users by reusing business logic. This coupled with the framework’s ability to perform platform-specific compilation makes it a tough contender in the market for the best cross platform app development

Flutter

Flutter is an open source SDK that is owned by Google. Launched in the year 2018, Flutter is one of the most prominent cross platform app development frameworks. It offers a host of tools and facilities for developers to seamlessly design apps across platforms.

Using Dart programming language, developers can compile source code into machine codes. Besides these, Flutter also offers developers elements like buttons, sliders, widgets and other UI elements to incorporate the aesthetics and experience of a native app.

Key Flutter Statistics

  • Close to 39% of the developer population uses Flutter for cross platform app development.
  • Play Store alone has around 90,000 apps developed on Flutter.
  • Flutter boasts of over 10 million downloads.
  • Some of the popular apps developed on Flutter include Google Pay, Alibaba and more

Advantages Of Flutter

Hot reload is one of the most popular features and advantages of Flutter. Apart from this, here are some other prominent advantages of the framework:

  1. Developers can customize their applications by using a range of widgets available with the platform.
  2. Flutter’s features and capabilities make it ideal for the development of MVPs and applications with limited time to market. Developers can test their ideas, validate performances and continue with their development process to launch stable apps with Flutter.
  3. Powered by Skia Graphics Library, Flutter offers a smoother UI experience to developers.

Flutter Vs Kotlin: Cross Platform App Development Showoff

Now that we have understood the basics, let’s get to the part where we compare the two cross platform app development tools across diverse mentrics and comparison factors. We will assess multiple aspects of mobile app development under diverse circumstances and conditions.

Performance

Flutter app development brings in speed and high performance factors into a project thanks to the use of the same programming language in both frontend and backend. Besides, hot reloading is one of the major benefits of Flutter, where it allows developers to instantly look at any changes they make to their code without reinstallation or reloads. This saves a significant amount of time for developers.

Kotlin app development, on the other hand, helps developers organize code according to the platform the app is being built for. For instance, if a developer is designing an app for Android, Kotlin ensures code is arranged in the right format so they can easily customize features and incorporate faster performances to the app. However, Kotlin lacks the hot reloading feature.

User Interface Experience

Kotlin is like a canvas for developers to use their creativity and skills to develop a unique application for the market. The framework is devoid of restrictions, guidelines or protocols, allowing developers the complete authority to venture into mobile app development from scratch.

Flutter’s advantage lies in the availability of widgets. These provide developers with convenient solutions to customize their apps and minimize the time required to develop an app.

3rd Party Libraries And Tools

As far as cross-platform app development is concerned, Flutter offers convenient ways to integrate 3rd party frameworks and tools. Kotlin app development involves the development of an app in a native ecosystem. This means developers can make use of existing 3rd party tools and libraries for their development process. They can use Jetpack Compose, SwiftUI and more libraries that are used for native app development.

Which Cross-Platform App Development Framework Should You Use For Your Next Project?

Flutter and Kotlin are both hot contenders in the mobile app development market. Each brings its own set of competencies and capabilities to a project. Besides, both frameworks have been designed and developed to simplify the job of developers and ultimately offer customers the smoothest, native-like app experiences.

As of now, the most practical verdict we could offer is that it all boils down to your ideas and project requirements. If you intend to test the waters and launch an MVP, Flutter would be your go-to tool. If you want to develop a customized app from scratch, Kotlin is an ideal option.

The performances of both are subjective and yield different results.

Wrapping Up

At the same time, we would also like to point out that the skill sets of developers who deploy either of the cross-platform app development frameworks come into the picture as well. It’s not enough that the frameworks are specialized and performance-specific. Developers need to possess the right skills, mindset and have ideas aligned with your vision to roll out the most stable and scalable app for your business.

That’s where we come in. We are veterans when it comes to cross-platform app development. Your single idea could find a place in the devices of both Android and iOS users with us. We understand consumer behavior and ensure your app not just records high downloads but retention ratios as well.

We recommend getting in touch with your ideas so we could discuss and see which framework we could deploy for your project. Reach out to us today.

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Flutter VS Kotlin: Comparing The Two Cross Platform App Development Technologies For 2021
 

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