The first part of Flutter vs. Xamarin highlighted some differences in their technologies, installation and UI components, to name a few. Part two will focus on codes, tools and other features.
1. Reusing the Code
The ability to reuse previously written code when creating new software applications is known as code reusability.
Xamarin uses Xamarin.Forms and C# that enable experts to reuse up to 96% of the existing code. With a highly reusable code base, a huge UI library and added capabilities of the .NET platform, Xamarin is used to quickly produce solutions with the look and feel of native ones while adding distinctive features.
With pre-existing logic and a variety of reusable codebases, Flutter may be used to create a unique user interface. It contains a Dart Virtual Machine that offers a just-in-time compiler (JIT) and an ahead-of-time compiler (AOT) for performance-oriented production code. This signifies that you can run your code on any platform that supports Flutter, using the same codebase.
Xamarin enables developers to reuse up to 96%, by utilizing the C# programming language, while the extent of code reusability in Flutter is comparatively lesser.
According to established market conditions, a technology’s worth and popularity are determined by how frequently it is used.
Xamarin development is preferred when it comes to cross-platform mobile apps and it shares nearly 80% of the code across several platforms. However, its popularity has slightly waned in recent times.
Flutter is a very popular cross-platform UI toolkit, as this framework is easy to understand and use. Once you master it, you can easily design stunning user interfaces for many platforms. The popularity of Flutter could also be because it is Google’s UI toolkit and is suitable for newbie mobile developers.
Nearly 42% of software designers prefer Flutter and only 11% prefer Xamarin.
App performance is the most crucial aspect when selecting a framework for cross-platform app development. It depends on many different elements and variables like the device, code, apps and features.
Xamarin guarantees a uniform user navigation experience as well as a single location to specify the visual hierarchy of an application. Building native applications with Xamarin is preferred for applications with complex UX/UI.
The Dart code that has been compiled into a C# library allows Flutter to offer a better app experience and enhance the speed of communication. App designers can use native codes provided by Flutter to give the app a native feel and provide an excellent user experience. It has many widgets such as scrolling, navigation and typefaces, which reduces the time needed to design an app.
While Xamarin provides near-native apps, Flutter uses Dart’s native translation to produce fast native apps.
4. Learning Curve
A short learning curve allows developers to add to their skills within a short period and build versatile apps quickly. An enterprise can use this data to make better decisions when allocating employee time and assigning training for new processes.
Visual Studio and Xamarin SDK are crucial for configuring Xamarin, thus developers with experience in VS Code can pick it up fast. The onboarding procedure for new developers is described in the Xamarin manuals, and it uses different setups such as Xamarin.iOS for iOS and Xamarin.Android for Android. For smooth onboarding, Xamarin offers its Xamarin university website filled with plenty of training and resources.
Setting up the IDE and platforms for both iOS and Android are covered in length in the Flutter beginners guide. A command line interface (CLI) tool for Flutter called flutter doctor walks developers through the setup and examines all the tools that need to be installed and configured locally. A new Flutter app can be created after the flutter doctor command meets its requirements.
Because the software needed for onboarding is small and straightforward to install, the “Flutter: Getting Started” guide is easier to follow than Xamarin’s. Moreover, the software is not dependent on any proprietary software.
5. Testing Capabilities
For better feedback on the code, developers have been running numerous tests and documenting the results.
Unit testing (a software testing method) and UI tests are supported by Xamarin in Visual Studio. Additionally, it allows third-party testing independently or through native test frameworks like XCUITest. Each platform project can be set up for Xamarin unit testing. It also offers specialized UI testing support called Xamarin.API UITest and has a test environment of its own.
A wide range of testing capabilities is available in Flutter to test apps at the widget, unit and integration levels. A clever widget testing capability included with Flutter allows users to test the user interface quickly and efficiently.
Xamarin and Flutter both offer excellent testing support. But Flutter has added features, like the widget testing support and the ability to conduct tests at various stages.
6. Development Tools
It’s challenging to get mobile apps approved for the Play Store or the App Store. It requires appropriate project configuration and digital certificates. When developing cross-platform mobile applications, it becomes considerably difficult.
Although the Xamarin-built automation process mainly relies on Microsoft Visual Studio setup, there is also a CLI for App Center called appcenter-cli that can be used to configure it.
Flutter has a strong CLI and you can produce any component by using this tool and the Flutter guidelines for developing and publishing Android and iOS apps.
Flutter can be used to launch apps from the CLI and provides excellent automation tools. The continuous integration/continuous deployment (CI/CD) is well supported by Xamarin, however, it’s all contained within Microsoft.
Choosing Between Flutter and Xamarin
Without a doubt, Flutter and Xamarin are significant competitors in the cross-platform app market. But it is still confusing for businesses to zero down on one. When creating mobile apps, Xamarin has a lot to offer, especially if you want to avoid coding for each platform separately while still targeting various operating systems and platforms. On the other hand, Flutter is more dependable for developing complex applications that demand rigorous testing and development.
Now that you know what each framework can provide and how it can help you develop your mobile app, you can select your framework considering your requirements.