Google introduced Sky, a new framework, seven years ago. Sky used Dart as an alternative to Java to create Android apps. It’s hard to believe Sky transformed into Flutter in such a short period of time. Flutter now raises the bar by announcing stable Windows support. With the addition of Windows platform support, Flutter gains access to millions of new users. Flutter is worth considering for your next big project because it allows you to code for Windows, iOS, Android and the web all from a single codebase.
In this article, we will discuss the new Flutter for Windows updates and how you can create beautifully customized Windows apps that will run on the web and mobile. Let’s get started!
What is Flutter?
Flutter is a portable UI toolkit that allows you to create native-like apps for mobile, web, and desktop from a single codebase. It employs the programming language Dart and Material Design and Cupertino widgets. Flutter developers can create stunning user interfaces that look and feel native. Even though you’re using a single codebase, it behaves naturally on any platform.
Why Flutter and Windows?
A couple of years ago, an ambitious vision was laid out for Flutter to expand from iOS and Android mobile apps to other platforms such as web and desktop.
Desktop apps aren’t simply mobile apps on a larger screen. They are intended for use with various input devices, such as a keyboard and mouse. They have resizable windows that are frequently displayed on a widescreen monitor. There are various conventions for important things like accessibility, input method editors, and visual styling. They also interact with various APIs in the underlying operating system: desktop apps support everything from file system pickers to device hardware to data stores such as the Windows registry. So, while we’ve been introduced to Flutter for Windows, we’ve also noticed that it’s designed for Windows.
The Windows team was approached and asked to say a few words about Flutter’s support. According to Kevin Gallo, Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President of Windows Developer Platform:
“We’re delighted to see Flutter adding support for creating Windows apps. Windows is an open platform, and we welcome all developers. We’re excited to see Flutter developers bring their experiences to Windows and also publish to the Microsoft Store. Flutter support for Windows is a big step for the community, and we can’t wait to see what you’ll bring to Windows!”
Tools for Flutter to Develop Windows App
Google’s tooling partners have been adding support for Windows in the Flutter new version to ensure seamless integration. It’s really exciting to see that Flutter now has a mature ecosystem built around it, and if you want to create Windows apps with Flutter, you should check out each of these tooling partners. Here are a few examples:
It is a low-code tool for creating Flutter apps. FlutterFlow now supports the development of Windows apps, and its features enable developers to tailor apps for desktop use.
Nevercode has upgraded this CI/CD tool to support building and testing Windows apps in the cloud, as well as automatically deploying them to the Microsoft Store.
The most recent version of this Flutter tool now allows you to create desktop apps for Windows. It’s a lightning-fast local data store that, with the help of Dart FFI, provides quick access to the core database.
Syncfusion has released an updated set of widgets to help with Windows app development. Subscribing to its toolkit will provide you with a rich data grid widget, data visualization components such as charting and treemaps, calendars and even support for Excel spreadsheets and PDF creation.
Rive announced the release of a Flutter Windows version of their popular graphic tooling suite. It enables developers to create interactive vector animations that can respond to code in real-time using a state machine. It will also have a smaller memory footprint and blazing fast performance.
Flutter 2.10 includes stable, production-quality support for building Windows apps, as well as a slew of other features, performance enhancements and bug fixes that shall be detailed in the future.
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