Blog Summary: Flutter and Kotlin are two well-known cross platform app development frameworks. And in order to pick up the best one, you need to have an in-depth idea on Flutter vs Kotlin. To make your task easier, in this blog we are going to cover -
✅What is Flutter?
✅What Is Kotlin?
✅Flutter vs Kotlin: a comparative overview
✅Flutter vs Kotlin: in a glimpse
✅When to use Kotlin?
✅When to use Flutter?
In the world of cross-platform app development, two technologies have been competing for supremacy for quite some time - Flutter vs Kotlin. While Kotlin has been a popular language for native Android app development, Flutter has gained a lot of traction in recent years for its ability to build high-performance and beautiful UIs across multiple platforms, including iOS and Android.
In this blog, we'll compare Flutter vs Kotlin in 2023 and see which one is best for cross-platform app development. So, let’s get started!
What Is Flutter?
Flutter is a popular open-source UI toolkit for building natively compiled applications for mobile, web, and desktop from a single codebase. It was developed by Google in 2017 and has gained a lot of popularity among developers due to its fast development cycle, hot reload feature, and excellent documentation.
So, what language does Flutter use? Flutter language is based on the Dart programming language, which was also developed by Google. Dart is an object-oriented language that is easy to learn and offers great performance. It is designed to be fast, flexible, and easy to scale.
Some of the popular apps built with Flutter are Google Ads, Reflectly, Alibaba, Hamilton, and Hookle, to name a few.
What Is Kotlin?
So, what is Kotlin or what is Kotlin used for? Kotlin is a modern, statically typed programming language that runs on the Java Virtual Machine (JVM) and can be used for both Android and server-side development. Kotlin was developed by JetBrains, a company known for developing the popular IntelliJ IDEA IDE, and was first released in 2011.
Kotlin popularity has been on the rise since it was officially announced as a first-class language for Android development at Google I/O in 2017. Since then, it has become the preferred language for many Android developers due to its concise syntax, enhanced type safety, and interoperability with Java.
Some of the popular apps built with Kotlin are Trello, Coursera, Evernote, Slack, and Duolingo, to name a few.
See More: Why Flutter App Development Is the Future in 2022: Flutter 2.8 Amplifies its Dominance
Flutter Vs Kotlin: A Comparative Overview
Here’s a comparative overview of Flutter vs Kotlin based on the key features and parameters.
1. Popularity and Market Share
Flutter popularity has been on the rise since its release in 2017, with many developers praising its fast development cycle and hot reload feature. According to the latest Stack Overflow Developer Survey, Flutter is the third most loved framework among developers, with a 67.2% satisfaction rate. However, it still has a long way to go before it can catch up with Kotlin in terms of market share.
Kotlin is currently the fourth most popular programming language in the world, according to the TIOBE Index. It has also been adopted by many large companies, including Pinterest, Uber, and Airbnb. Moreover, Kotlin popularity among Android developers has been increasing steadily over the years, with many new apps being built using Kotlin.
When it comes to performance, both Flutter and Kotlin offer excellent speed and reliability. However, Flutter has an edge over Kotlin when it comes to building UIs. Flutter uses its own rendering engine, which allows it to deliver fast and smooth animations and graphics.
On the other hand, Kotlin relies on the Android framework for UI rendering, which can sometimes result in slower performance.
3. Learning Curve
In terms of the learning curve, Kotlin is a relatively easy language to learn for Java developers, as it shares many similarities with Java. However, if you're new to programming, it might take some time to get familiar with Kotlin's syntax and concepts.
Flutter language, on the other hand, requires learning Dart, which is not as popular as Java or Kotlin. However, Dart is a relatively easy language to learn, and the excellent documentation provided by Google makes it easier for beginners to get started with Flutter.
Flutter is often considered superior to Kotlin due to its ability to build beautiful and responsive UIs that look and feel native. Flutter offers a wide range of widgets that allow you to create custom designs and animations easily. Moreover, Flutter's hot reload feature makes it easy to test and iterate on UI changes quickly.
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Kotlin, on the other hand, relies on the Android framework for UI design, which can sometimes limit your options for customization. However, with the release of Android Jetpack Compose, Kotlin now offers a modern and flexible way to build UIs that are more comparable to Flutter in terms of customization and responsiveness.
5. Community Support
Both Flutter and Kotlin have active and supportive communities, with many resources available online, including documentation, tutorials, and open-source libraries. However, Kotlin has been around for much longer than Flutter, which means it has a more extensive community and a larger ecosystem of tools and libraries.
6. Development Tools
When it comes to development tools, both Flutter and Kotlin offer excellent support for a range of IDEs, including Android Studio, Visual Studio Code, and IntelliJ IDEA. However, Flutter's hot reload feature makes it easier to test and iterate on changes quickly, which can save a lot of time during development.
7. Cross-Platform Support
One of the biggest advantages of Flutter over Kotlin is its ability to build apps for multiple platforms, including iOS, Android, web, and desktop. With Flutter, you can use the same codebase to build apps for all these platforms, which can save a lot of time and effort.
Kotlin, on the other hand, is primarily designed for Android app development, although it can also be used for server-side development using frameworks like Spring.
8. Native Integration
Another advantage of Kotlin over Flutter is its seamless integration with the Android framework, which allows you to access native Android APIs easily. This can be especially useful if you need to use features like camera, location, or sensors in your app.
See More: Why Flutter Is the Best Platform to Make Hybrid Apps?
Flutter Vs Kotlin: In a Glimpse
When to Use Kotlin?
Kotlin is an excellent choice for native Android app development, especially if you're already familiar with Java. Kotlin offers many benefits over Java, including enhanced type safety, concise syntax, and improved performance.
Moreover, with the release of Android Jetpack Compose, Kotlin now offers a modern and flexible way to build UIs that can be more comparable to Flutter in terms of customization and responsiveness.
Here are some of the top use cases of Kotlin -
- Developing native Android apps
- Building apps that require access to native Android APIs and frameworks
- Writing concise, safe, and efficient code with reduced boilerplate
- Developing server-side applications with frameworks like Spring
- Building apps with support for multiple threads and coroutines
- Developing apps with higher performance and faster execution times compared to Java
- Building apps with features like reactive programming and functional programming
- Writing code that can interoperate with Java libraries and frameworks
When to Use Flutter?
Flutter is an excellent choice for cross platform app development, especially if you want to build beautiful and responsive UIs that look and feel native on multiple platforms. With Flutter, you can use the same codebase to build apps for iOS, Android, web, and desktop, which can save a lot of time and effort.
Moreover, Flutter's hot reload feature and fast development cycle make it easy to test and iterate on changes quickly.
Here are some of the top use cases of Flutter -
- Cross-platform mobile app development for iOS and Android
- Building apps with beautiful and customizable user interfaces (UI)
- Creating complex animations and visual effects for mobile apps
- Developing apps with support for hot reloading and fast development cycles
- Building apps with support for modern design patterns like BLoC and Provider
- App development with support for internationalization and localization
See More: 7 Reasons Why Building A Startup App in Flutter is Ideal For Your Business
Both Flutter and Kotlin offer excellent options for app development, depending on your needs and goals. If you're primarily focused on building native Android apps, Kotlin is a great choice due to its seamless integration with the Android framework and enhanced type safety.
On the other hand, if you want to build cross-platform apps with beautiful and responsive UIs, Flutter is an excellent choice due to its ability to build apps for multiple platforms from a single codebase. However, Flutter is overall a better choice to build competitive apps.
We, at Third Rock Techkno, offer a dedicated Flutter development solution that not only utilizes its full potential but ensures high quality competitive app development. Take a look at our portfolio and drop us a line to get started.
1. What is Flutter?
Flutter is an open-source UI software development kit created by Google that enables developers to build natively compiled apps for mobile, web, and desktop from a single codebase.
2. What is Kotlin?
Kotlin is a programming language developed by JetBrains that targets multiple platforms including Android, iOS, and web. Kotlin can be used for both server-side and client-side development.
3. Which is better for cross-platform app development, Flutter or Kotlin?
It depends on the project requirements, team expertise, and the target platforms. Flutter is a good choice if you want to build highly customized and visually appealing apps for both Android and iOS platforms. Kotlin is a good choice if you have an existing codebase in Java and want to use the same codebase for cross-platform development. But overall, Flutter is better for competitive app development.
4. Which platform has better community support, Flutter or Kotlin?
Both Flutter and Kotlin have large and growing communities. Flutter has a larger and more active community with a wider range of third-party libraries and tools. Kotlin also has a large and growing community, especially in the Android development space, with excellent support for Android Studio and other JetBrains IDEs.