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Flutter vs. React Native: Head-To-Head Comparison

Comparison Between Flutter and React Native

by Pranisha Rai
Flutter Vs React Native
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Cross-platform app development provides a cost-effective approach that attracts both software developers and businesses. It allows them to create a high-quality native-like app for both iOS and Android using a single codebase. While there are many app development frameworks available, Flutter and React Native are the two cross-platform app development frameworks widely used by developers. Flutter is used by 46% of developers, and React Native is used by 32%. This blog explores the performance, architecture, and ecosystem of these two cross-platform app development tools. So, by the end, you can decide which mobile app development framework would best suit your needs.

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What is React Native?

React Native is a cross-platform mobile development framework created by Facebook. It was released as an open-source project but became a massive hit for developing mobile apps. React Native allows developers to build high-quality mobile apps and deploy them on iOS and Android using a single codebase. Some of the big names associated with React Native are Instagram, Facebook, and Skype.

Must read: What is Flutter? 
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Flutter vs. React Native: Head-To-Head Comparison

Flutter is a reactive framework that uses widgets to create stunning and smooth UI that runs across different platforms. React Native uses JavaScript and React to produce engaging and user-friendly mobile apps. Both frameworks stand neck-to-neck; by comparing their key features, you can decide which cross-development app framework is best for your needs. Let’s have a closer look at their feature comparison: 

Flutter Vs React Native Head To Head Comparison

Hot Reload

Both Flutter and React Native have these hot reload features. Hot reload feature is beneficial because you can view the changes instantly in the code without having to reload the entire application. 

Flutter framework uses a 2D graphic rendering library, Skia architecture, that allows to rebuilt app UIs in real-time.

React Native uses the Flux architecture, which requires a JavaScript bridge. Thus, whenever changes are made, React Native relies on the JavaScript thread, which results in a slower hot reload than Flutter. But the JavaScript bridge helps React Native use JavaScript and Native to interact with each other.

Summary: Therefore, Flutter is the winnerFlutter’s Skia architecture and 2D graphics rendering give it an edge over React Native. On the other hand, React Native falls short with its reliance on the JavaScript bridge.

Code Reusability

In mobile app development, code reusability can significantly reduce development time and cost. React Native and Flutter both promote code reusability but differ in usage. 

Flutter uses widgets in different parts of the codebase that allow Flutter developers to build UI components with ease. 

React Native uses components that can be reused across multiple platforms. Although both frameworks support code reusability, Flutter outperforms React Native because its widgets are highly reusable and fit seamlessly to different requirements. Also, React Native has limitations in customization; however, its third-party libraries and a large community assist React Native developers in reusing code. 

Summary: Flutter is a winner. Flutter offers better code reusability than React Native since it uses widgets and a unified language for UI and logic. While in React Native, developers are required to write platform-specific code that might limit the code’s reusability.

Native Performance

Both React Native and Flutter app development frameworks have advantages and drawbacks in terms of performance. 

React Native leverages the Just-In-Time (JIT) compilation process for faster rendering times and to boost overall performance. It heavily relies on JavaScript bridges and components to establish communication with native modules, which sometimes results in poor performance issues. 

Flutter uses Ahead-of-Time (AOT) compilation. This enables faster development and iteration but slower start-up times. Unlike React Native, the Flutter framework doesn’t rely on native components. Instead, it uses its own rendering engine that promotes faster rendering times. But this ends up making the Flutter app larger, which means apps developed by Flutter will consume a lot of memory. 

Summary: It’s a draw. Both Flutter and React Native provide exceptional performance for applying animations and graphics. However, Flutter’s rendering engine gives better control over animation and customization options.

Ease of Use and Installation

React Native is easy to use and install for developers who have prior experience using frameworks such as React and Vue. 

However, Flutter framework is easy to use and install if you have a background in Java, .Net, or C#. Also, Flutter’s extensive built-in widgets and libraries make the application development process seamless.

When it comes to installation, React Native is straightforward. React Native dev would be required to generate packages. On the other hand, Flutter developers need to add a PATH variable from the command line, which makes things complex and difficult. 

Summary: Flutter is more beginner-friendly, while React Native has a straightforward installation processFlutter’s rich customizable widgets make it easy for beginners to build complex UIs without any need for third-party libraries. Whereas React Native uses multiple languages like Objective-C, Swift, Java, Kotlin, JavaScript, and JSX., which makes the learning curve steeper. 


The community plays a crucial role in a cross-platform app development. Community support helps developers resolve issues. 

React Native has a mature community with a comprehensive knowledge base. Besides, it provides many ready-made functionalities and component libraries. React Native documentation is well organized and extensive, with a dedicated section of components, APIs, and more. Moreover, it also has subreddits, forums, and community-driven packages and plugins available on npm. 

Flutter is relatively young, but its community is thriving and growing rapidly. It offers a lot of open libraries with detailed documentation, a dedicated section on how to get started, widgets, animations, and more. 

Summary: The winner is React Native. The Flutter community is still growing. React Native has a diverse and mature community, which can provide developers with consistent resources. 


Flutter’s architecture is completely based on the widget tree. It provides a rich set of widgets and a flexible layout system that assists developers in creating complex, high-performance UIs. Besides, the Stream API and the BLoC pattern enable the separation of business logic and UI code.

Whereas React Native’s architecture is based on a JavaScript bridge that enables JavaScript to communicate with the native platform code. Also, its components are written in JavaScript and compiled to native code using the bridge.

Besides, the flexbox-based layout allows the smooth creation of responsive UIs, and the Redux library provides a predictable state container for managing the application state. Flutter widgets make it easy to maintain consistency in the UI across platforms, whereas React Native’s reliance on a JavaScript bridge causes performance overhead. 

Summary: Therefore, Flutter is the winner. Flutter widget architecture promotes better code organization, which is beneficial for developing complex apps. React Native uses a JavaScript bridge to communicate with JavaScript code and native platform APIs. This leads to performance overhead and complexity. 

User Interface (UI)

Flutter and React Native offer the best features for creating high-quality UI for mobile app development. But the difference lies in their usage. 

React Native uses native UI components for both Android and iOS platforms. 

Flutter uses widgets and a rendering engine to enable smooth and customizable UI for multiple platforms.

Both of the app development platforms offer a wide range of UI libraries and tools. React Native offers libraries like React Native Elements, NativeBase, and Shoutem, and Flutter provides Material Design and Cupertino widgets, among many others. Although React Native may be the best fit for developing a mobile with a native-like feel, it still faces performance issues, especially when dealing with complex UIs.

Summary: Flutter is the winner. Flutter’s comprehensive widgets are highly customizable, and the rendering engine ensures a consistent look of the UI across different platforms. While React Native provides flexibility in native components, it still leads to variation in UI behavior.


React Native supports the IDE software suite that includes Espresso, Jasmine, KIF, Appium, Calabash, UI Automation, Robotium, Frank, TestNG, and more. However, the problem with React Native application testing is that there is no documentation for the testing routines. 

Flutter leverages Dart testing automation features and tools like IDE (debugging), DartDevTools, and Continuous Integration (CI). The best thing about the Flutter framework is that it has detailed documentation on all integration testing, unit testing, and widget testing.

Summary: Thus, Flutter is the winner. Both of them offer the best testing capabilities, but Flutter provides comprehensive testing tools and documentation. Whereas React Native depends more on the external libraries that require more setup and configuration.

Backend Functionality

Both Flutter and React Native provide options to connect to the backend. 

But React Native has the perks of using the JavaScript bridge. It can leverage Node.js as its backend framework and allow React Native development to seamlessly integrate with other backend systems like MongoDB, MySQL, and PostgreSQL.

 While Flutter offers a range of plugins to connect with backend technologies, its official language, Dart, comes with a built-in library called Dart’s IO and Firebase that enables Flutter developers to build full-stack applications with ease.

Some of the databases that React Native and Flutter support are SQLite, MySQL, and PostgreSQL. However, React Native supports NoSQL databases like MongoDB, Couchbase, and Amazon DynamoDB, which gives it an edge over Flutter in certain use cases. Some of the apps developed using Flutter are Alibaba e-commerce, Google Ads, and Birch Finance, a fintech app helping users manage personal credit cards. Similarly, apps built using React Native are Facebook, Instagram, and SoundCloud. Pulse music sharing and distribution. 

Overall, Flutter with Firebase integration provides backend services such as authentication, real-time databases, cloud storage, and more. React Native has access to a wide range of JavaScript libraries and packages for backend interaction. 

Summary: It is a drawBoth of these tools work effectively with back-end services; thus, the ultimate decision comes down to your preference for the language you want to use. 

Programming Languages

Flutter and React Native use different programming languages to apply logic and behavior to the app. 

Flutter’s official language is Dart, which is an object-oriented, strongly typed language. 

React Native uses JavaScript, which is used for both front-end and back-end development

When choosing between these two frameworks, it is important to consider the specific needs of your app. If you want to build complex and interactive UIs, Flutter’s Dart is the best choice. However, if your app needs to integrate with existing web technologies, then React Native’s JavaScript would be the best option. 

SummaryTherefore, the winner is React NativeSince Dart is not as popular as JavaScript, there will be fewer experienced developers. Even though its ecosystem is growing rapidly, Dart’s libraries are not extensive like JavaScript.  

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React Native vs. Flutter: Which Cross-Platform Framework Is Best for You?

Both app development platforms have been used by big companies like Instagram, Bloomberg, Google, and Facebook to build their apps. React Native has a much higher adoption rate than the Flutter. While Flutter is relatively young it is catching up rapidly. Its thriving community is continuously working on the improvement of the Flutter framework. Although, Flutter is not as mature as React Native, it is widely acclaimed for its simplicity and performance among developers and businesses. 

If you wish to hire a Flutter developer or a React Native developer, sign up with Olibr and bring your project to life.

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Flutter doesn’t rely on JavaScript bridge to communicate between native modules, this can significantly increase development time. Also, its feature-rich widgets contribute to a more efficient development process.  

React Native has a larger community and ecosystem. It has also better support for third-party libraries, which React Native dev can access ·        third-party libraries that have already been developed for React. 

The complexity of the app’s UI, the device that the app is running on, and the amount of data that the app needs to process affects the performance of the app.  

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