Flutter for React Native Devs in 30 Seconds

You may have heard of Flutter, Google’s answer to React Native. What should you know?

  • It’s in the Dart language, which borrows heavily from Java. But Javascript fans will find it very easy to read (see below)
  • IntelliJ or Android Studio are the recommended IDEs with Flutter plugins.
  • Unlike RN, Flutter doesn’t use a Javascript bridge, it compiles straight to native iOS/Android files. (But in “slow mode” development, it operates as an interpreted language so you can still do hot reloading)
  • Unlike RN, Flutter comes “batteries included”, with opinions on routing, animations, i18n and themes!!! In particular it comes with a bunch of inbuilt widget styles where you can use Material Design or “Cupertino” (aka Apple “inspired”) designs right out of the box. Also, did I mention routing?!?!?! Here, let me do it justice:


  • The animations are seriously good. Can you do this in React Native?

  • Like RN, Flutter uses a lot of familiar paradigms including class extensions, setState and event handlers. If you can read RN, you can read Flutter:

class _MyHomePageState extends State<MyHomePage> {
  int _counter = 0;

  void _incrementCounter() {
    setState(() {

  Widget build(BuildContext context) {
    return new Scaffold(
      appBar: new AppBar(
        title: new Text(widget.title),
      body: new Center(
        child: new Column(
          mainAxisAlignment: MainAxisAlignment.center,
          children: <Widget>[
            new Text(
              'You have pushed the button this many times:',
            new Text(
              style: Theme.of(context).textTheme.display1,
      floatingActionButton: new FloatingActionButton(
        onPressed: _incrementCounter,
        tooltip: 'Increment',
        child: new Icon(Icons.add),
      ), // This trailing comma makes auto-formatting nicer for build methods.
  • The install experience is very smooth:
git clone -b alpha https://github.com/flutter/flutter.git
export PATH=`pwd`/flutter/bin:$PATH
flutter doctor

Give it a shot! http://flutter.io and the Google Codelab tutorial is here. or watch the Google I/O video!

Tagged in: #inthirtyseconds #flutter #react native

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