Both Kivy and Flutter accomplish the same task of providing app developers with user interface creation tools and easy multi-platform support. But these similarities end on the surface as these are two very distinct frameworks that attract different developers.
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of using each of these. This will help us understand the things that make them different and why certain developers choose one and some choose the other.
Kivy is an open-source Python library for building graphical user interfaces that are cross-compatible with multiple platforms. It can be used on Windows, Linux, Mac, and even Raspberry Pie systems. It is completely free and has an MIT license, which means that you can use this library for both personal and commercial use without any issues.
Flutter, on the other hand, is also an application user interface creation tool that can be used to create apps that are compatible with all of the popular desktop and mobile operating systems and also work perfectly on the web. It includes a library of easily reusable assets like buttons, text fields, and menu options. It also contains tools to help transfer your code to different platforms.
Kivy vs Fullter differences:
Here are a few of the major differences between the Kivy and Flutter in a brief table form:
Kivy was initially released in 2011 by the Kivy organization.
The alpha version of Flutter was released in 2017 by Google with the help of community developers.
It is written in Python and Cython.
It is developed in C, C++, and Dart.
Kivy has an MIT free use license.
Flutter holds the modified new BSD license.
The KV language is used in Kivy to create and implement widgets and other UI elements.
Kivy is most notably known for its perfect support for multi-touch as well as traditional input methods like keyboard and mouse.
The biggest reason behind the fame of Flutter is its ease of use and the speed at which a developer can attach a working UI to their app code.
The system requirements for installing and running Kivy are a 32-bit or a 64-bit CPU that clocks up to at least 1GH, 1GB of RAM, and pre-installed Python on your system.
Flutter requires a modern 64-bit x86 CPU with Windows 7 or later installed. It also needs around 1.7GB of free disk space for proper installation.
- Kivy allows apps to access certain APIs in a phone that enables them to utilize things like the camera, vibrator, camera flash, and other similar hardware components.
- It includes a fairly extensive and competent video playback and streaming solution. The video player has all of the necessary features, such as the ability to pause and resume the playback. It also supports plain text subtitles and the ability to show custom messages on top of the video.
- The UI features in Kivy give developers the ability to create an attractive user interface with the use of widgets and an easy-to-implement dark mode. It also includes controls to include custom animations, touch navigation gestures, and other ease of use elements.
- Kivy is much faster and reliable on web-based applications than HTML5.
- Developers can use Kivy on any platform that they like including phone operating systems like Android and iOS and desktop systems such as Windows and Linux. It also runs flawlessly on an ARM-based Raspberry Pi system.
- A lot of the Kivy widgets have multi-touch and touch gesture support out of the box. The developers of Kivy have also provided a library to record and understand gestures made by the user, such as a left to right or a right to left horizontal swipe.
- KV language, while amazing at creating UI elements, isn’t suitable for code compilation on its own.
- Kivy can be a bit slow at times as building, compiling, and testing mobile apps can take a lot of unnecessary time.
- The package sizes on Kivy are needlessly big as it offers little to no optimization in the size department.
- The Kivy community is not entirely nonexistent but is certainly fairly small and inactive when compared to competing platforms.
- Kivy can sometimes take a while to get updates for the latest Android APIs.
- Flutter offers a coding feature known as hot reload. It allows developers to see the changes that they are making in the code in real-time. This significantly speeds up the coding process. Devs can also pause the code at any moment, make necessary changes to it, and restart from the place they stopped.
- The widget support of Flutter is certainly the highlight of its pros. All of the widgets are available in both Android and iOS styles. Developers can also customize them to a great extent. Starting from a robust base and customizing it to the way you want it to be is much easier and more time-efficient than building one from scratch.
- The language used in Flutter, Dart, is closely integrated with the ARM codebase of devices such as smartphones. This makes the overall app launch times super short and speeds up the general process of the app.
- The custom UI development capabilities of Flutter allow brands to keep their apps consistent and similar-looking across the platforms. This ensures that brands with a distinct visual identity keep it regardless of the device’s operating system.
- Flutter is relatively new to the mobile development framework industry. Thus, third-party library support is certainly lacking in many places, and a lot of the well-known libraries are not available.
- It adds an extra learning hurdle. While it isn’t difficult to learn the system, programmers do have to learn Dart before they can start using Flutter to its maximum potential and create their desired UI elements.
- Flutter is not suitable for apps that require the use of native libraries, have a lot of interaction with device hardware on a point level, or have augmented reality/ virtual reality elements in it.
Both Kivy and Flutter are amazing application UI development frameworks. They offer handy tools that save developers and programmers an unimaginable amount of time while also making the apps look super clean and modern. Both have their pros and cons, and neither is better than the other on an objective level. Choosing one over the other is based on your specific requirements and development environment, as neither Kivy nor Flutter have every single feature. So, make sure to dig deep in their respective documentation to find out the one that works for you.