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Flutter vs Swift for iOS App Development

June 12th, 2023
flutter or Swift for iOS App Development.

Mobile app development involves using programming languages, frameworks and various other technologies to create applications for smartphones and tablets. There are several frameworks that developers can use to develop apps with ease, but Flutter and Swift are two very popular ones. 

Both provide tools that make it easier to build apps, but they also have various pros and cons when used together with native languages like Kotlin (for Android) and Objective-C (for iOS). In this article, we will discuss how both these technologies stack up against each other so that you can decide which one best fits your needs!

iOS App Development

Every business must develop a mobile app since it is the digital age. The two main platforms are iPhone and Android, with many users for both platforms. The iPhone has several unique features making it vital for businesses to invest in iPhone app development to remain competitive.

iOS App Development involves several steps, which include:

  • Preparation and planning.

  • Designing the user interface (UI).

  • Creating models, controllers and views for your app's data objects.

  • Coding in an appropriate programming language.

Here are a few interesting facts and statistics: 

  • iPhone mobile apps are no longer just for large companies.

  • People in the USA spend over 5 hours a day on their mobile devices, with 92% of time spent on apps and 8% on browsers.

  • 42% of small businesses already have mobile apps.

  • 30% of small businesses plan to develop a mobile app for their firm in the future..

  • There are already over 3.4 Million unique mobile apps, while there are a lot more unique websites, as many as 1.9 Billion. 

  • There are over 150,000 - 200,000 new app downloads each month.

(https://buildfire.com/app-statistics/)

Starting the mobile app development process for your company is easier than you might have imagined. You can gain the upper edge by beating the other firms to a top-notch mobile app. This is one of the best ways to give your business a boost. It applies to all types of industries hence all types of businesses can opt for developing one. Developing a mobile app can help reduce expenses, increase productivity, and increase ROI.

Programming Languages for Developing iOS Applications

There are several languages one can use to develop a state-of-the-art iOS app. Some of the main languages are:

ios development programming language.
  • Swift: Swift is a general-purpose programming language developed by Apple Inc. It was introduced in 2014 and has been growing in popularity ever since. Swift is used to develop apps for iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS devices.

  • Flutter: Flutter is a robust framework for developing iOS apps. It uses a popular programming language Dart to create high-quality mobile apps to give your business an edge. It is also possible to use several advanced technologies and create cross-platform applications for both Android and iOS.

  • Objective-C: Objective-C is a programming language primarily used for developing applications on Apple's macOS and iOS platforms. Objective-C is an extension of the C programming language, meaning it includes all the features of C while adding object-oriented programming capabilities. Objective-C also supports a rich set of frameworks and APIs, such as Cocoa and Cocoa Touch, which provide pre-built functionality for building user interfaces, handling input/output, networking, and more.

  • React Native is an open-source framework for building mobile applications using JavaScript. It was developed by Facebook and released in 2015. React Native allows developers to create native mobile apps for iOS and Android platforms using a single codebase, making it a popular choice for cross-platform mobile development. With React Native App Development, you can write code in JavaScript and utilize the framework's pre-built components to create powerful and feature-rich mobile applications.

What is Flutter?

What is Flutter.

Flutter is a mobile app development framework that lets you build native apps for Android and iOS. It uses Dart, an open-source programming language developed by Google, to create native interfaces.

Flutter was released in 2017 as an alpha version and has since been updated regularly with new features and bug fixes.

The project was started by Google engineers who wanted to make it easier for developers to create high-quality apps with fewer bugs on both platforms at once--without having to learn two different languages or frameworks.

Here are a few important facts and statistics:

  • As per a survey, Flutter is one of the most popular mobile app development methods. Over 30% of developers in 2019 preferred Flutter, while in 2020, it rose to 39%; in 2021, it was as high as 42%. 

  • There are over 24000 Flutter apps with over 11 Billion downloads.

  • It is among the top 4 mobile app development frameworks.

  • It accounts for 3.55% of installed apps and 8.33% of new apps. Source: Flutter – Android SDK statistics | AppBrain

  • Several large businesses have chosen Flutter for their mobile app development, like Google Ads, eBay Motors, Google Pay, Hamilton, Dream11, Rive, Sererpod, Shorebird, Wolt, AppFlowy, ClickUp, Sonos, Tide, Tizen, and Toyota.

What is Swift?

what is Swift.

Swift is a general-purpose programming language developed by Apple Inc. It was released in 2014 as a replacement for Objective-C, which had been the primary programming language used to write software for Mac OS X and iOS since their inception in 2001. Swift can be used to create macOS, iOS, watchOS and tvOS applications. Unlike Objective-C, a strict superset of C that adds object-oriented features such as classes and protocols (similar to Java), Swift is an expressive language that uses type inference and generics instead of explicit syntaxes like class/function definitions or method signatures, respectively.

Swift was designed with ease of use in mind; it has automatic memory management (garbage collection) built into its type system, so there's no need for manual reference counting, as you'd see in C++ or Java codebases written using garbage-collected languages like Python where developers need only worry about freeing up memory when they're done using it rather than keeping track manually throughout development cycles before deployment.

Pros and cons of using Flutter in mobile app development

Flutter Pros and Cons.
  • Flutter is a cross-platform framework for mobile app development.

  • Google developed it and is also open source, so you can use it to build apps on Android or iOS platforms.

  • Flutter is written in Dart language, which is compiled into native code for each platform.

  • It uses a reactive programming model that makes building user interfaces that run fast and smoothly on all devices easier.

  • Flutter has a rich set of widgets available in its library, so you don't have to reinvent the wheel whenever you want your app to do something new - just pick up one of these widgets!

  • Flutter allows developers to write a single codebase that can be used to build apps for multiple platforms, including iOS, Android, web, and desktop. This significantly reduces development time and effort by eliminating the need to write separate code for each platform.

  • Flutter provides a hot reload feature that lets developers see changes in the code immediately reflected in the app. This speeds up the development process, allowing for quick iterations and faster debugging.

  • Flutter apps are compiled into native machine code, which allows them to deliver high-performance and native-like user experiences on iOS devices. Flutter renders UI components using Skia, a high-performance 2D graphics engine.

  • Flutter offers a rich set of pre-built widgets that allow developers to create stunning and highly customizable user interfaces. The framework provides extensive support for animations, gestures, and effects, enabling developers to build visually appealing apps.

  • Flutter provides a comprehensive set of plugins and packages that give developers access to a wide range of native device features and APIs. This allows for seamless integration of platform-specific functionality into the app.

  • Flutter has a growing and vibrant community of developers actively contribute packages, libraries, and resources. This ensures continuous support and availability of a wide range of developer tools and resources.

  • With Flutter's cross-platform capabilities and efficient development workflow, developers can release their apps simultaneously on multiple platforms, reducing the time required to bring the app to market.

  • By utilizing a single codebase for multiple platforms, Flutter reduces development costs as it requires fewer resources and less time than building separate native apps for each platform.

  • Flutter offers a powerful framework for iOS app development, allowing developers to create high-quality, performant, and visually appealing apps with reduced development time and effort.

Pros and cons of using Swift in mobile app development

  • Swift is a modern programming language.

  • It has a large community.

  • It's easy to learn and use.

  • Swift is well suited for mobile app development, but it can also be used for web app development and other platforms like Linux or OS X.

Benefits of Hiring Flutter Mobile App Development Company

Benefits of Hiring Flutter app developer.

Flutter app development is currently trending when it comes to developing a mobile app. It is expected to be used for future app development as well. It is ideal for many businesses, including developing an MVP app. An MVP is ideal for startups as well as businesses that are on a tight budget. One can also test the market acceptance of a new business idea or application before developing the app with all the features. 

The fact that Flutter has its rendering engine, Skia, also works in its favour. It is possible to use Advanced APIs, reuse code and take advantage of rapid testing. But that's not all, and Flutter also has a game engine, Flame. that opens the door to many good game development options. Flutter is expected to lead the way when it comes to mobile app development, allowing one to develop highly appealing mobile apps with an interactive interface.

When you are looking to hire a mobile app development company, it is important that you take your time and do the research necessary to ensure that they are the right choice for your business. A good place to start when researching companies is by looking at their portfolio of work. You want to see what kind of apps they have developed and how successful they were in getting those apps downloaded by users. 

You also want to ask questions about how long it took them from start to finish on each project so that you can gauge how quickly they can get things done for your company's needs as well as get an idea about their experience level in general (the more projects completed successfully without issue means better quality control).

Acquaint Softtech is a Flutter mobile app development company with highly skilled Flutter developers. We have all the necessary resources you might need to develop state-of-the-art mobile applications for your business. Our team of dedicated Flutter developers build custom mobile apps to suit your requirements. Having successfully developed over 5000 websites and mobile apps for a wide range of businesses, you can trust us with the development of your mobile application. Get in touch to learn more about mobile app development or you want to hire remote developers for your app development project.

The Verdict

Both Flutter and Swift are very good options for developing a mobile application for your company. Hence, one needs to decide based on the type of app they wish to develop. Seeking professional help is also a good practice and useful for making the right decision. 

That said, Flutter has several advantages over Swift since it is a cross-platform framework that allows one to develop apps for both iOS and Android devices. It is possible to use the codebase of your iPhone app for creating Android apps as well. Besides this, it also offers native performance, has rich widgets and has several other features like hot reload, and supports rapid application development.

FAQ

What is Flutter?

Flutter is an open-source UI software development kit (SDK) developed by Google. It allows developers to create cross-platform mobile applications using a single codebase. Flutter uses the Dart programming language and provides a rich set of pre-built UI components, tools, and libraries for building beautiful and performant applications.

What is Swift?

Swift is a programming language developed by Apple specifically for iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS app development. It was designed to be a modern, safe, and efficient language offering a more streamlined and expressive syntax than Objective-C, previously used for iOS development. Swift is the primary programming language for building applications on Apple platforms.

What are the differences between Flutter and Swift?

Flutter and Swift are both used for developing mobile applications, but there are several key differences between the two:

  • Platform: Flutter is a cross-platform framework that allows you to write code once and deploy it on both iOS and Android platforms. Swift, on the other hand, is specifically designed for iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS development.

  • Language: Flutter uses the Dart programming language, which differs from Swift. Dart is an object-oriented language with a syntax similar to Java or JavaScript. Swift, developed by Apple, is a powerful and modern language built specifically for iOS and macOS development.

  • UI Development: Flutter has a unique approach to UI development. It uses a reactive framework where Flutter draws the UI entirely, allowing for a consistent and customizable look and feel across platforms. Swift, on the other hand, uses Interface Builder and Storyboards, which are more traditional methods for building user interfaces.

  • Community and Ecosystem: Swift benefits from being developed and backed by Apple, which provides a robust ecosystem and extensive documentation. Flutter, although relatively new compared to Swift, has a growing and active community, along with a range of packages and plugins available through its package manager, pub.dev.

  • Performance: Swift, a language developed by Apple, is highly optimized for iOS and macOS platforms. It offers excellent performance and takes full advantage of the underlying system. While also performing well, Flutter introduces a layer of abstraction for cross-platform compatibility, which may slightly impact performance.

Which one should I choose, Flutter or Swift?

The choice between Flutter and Swift depends on your specific needs and requirements:

  • If you are primarily targeting iOS and macOS platforms and want to leverage Apple's ecosystem and tools, Swift is the obvious choice. It offers excellent performance and deep integration with Apple's frameworks.

  • If you need to develop applications for both iOS and Android platforms and want to share a single codebase, Flutter provides a strong cross-platform solution. Flutter's hot-reload feature allows for rapid development and it has a growing community and ecosystem.

  • Ultimately, it is recommended to evaluate the specific project requirements, the target platforms, the team's expertise, and other factors to make an informed decision between Flutter and Swift.

What is the importance of mobile app development?

All types of businesses need to develop a mobile app since this is the digital era with many mobile phone users.


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Mukesh Ram

Founder and CEO, Acquaint Softtech

I love to make a difference. Thus, I started Acquaint Softtech with the vision of making developers easily accessible and affordable to all. Me and my beloved team have been fulfilling this vision for over 15 years now and will continue to get even bigger and better.

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