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Quick summary: The cross-platform development framework- flutter is back with new additions, breakthrough changes, and the removal of some functionalities in the Flutter 3.10 version. It has become more secure, stable, and amazing for developers which we will explore in the blog.
Flutter framework wins the heart of developers with an array of updates and enhancements that Flutter brought in subsequent version releases in the last few years. In fact, businesses hire dedicated Flutter developers to avail of the advanced functionalities of Flutter for app development.
Now, the most awaited Flutter 3.10 release not only enables Flutter to retain the top position as a cross-platform development framework for building mobile, web, and desktop applications but provides immense opportunities for businesses to improve their digital strategy. The top apps built using Flutter for the leading businesses will provide a better insight at the importance of using Flutter in developing an application.
You certainly want to know what was unearthed on 10th May 2023 in a Google conference regarding Flutter 3.10. Take a glance at everything that’s bundled in Flutter 3.10 Release.
Since Flutter is continuously being developed, new versions with new features, improvements, and bug fixes are released regularly. Let’s unleash what’s there in Flutter 3.10 this time.
Dart 3- the modern and stable language is now 100% null-safe with a sound-type system. It helps in preventing coding errors such as null pointer exceptions and allowing compilers for code optimization. As most of the packages already support null safety so migrating to Dart 3 won’t be an issue. Dart 3 brought major language features such as patterns, records, and class modifiers to add new capabilities to the Flutter applications.
The latest update has made Dart more crisp and expressive, which turned it into a productive language that can be leveraged for developing high-performance applications on any platform.
A long back, developers are looking for material library components to match with material design specifications, but the flutter 3.10 made it possible. The new framework has got an update wherein new components and component libraries are added, existing visual components are updated, and pretty more changes are made that align material 3 with the latest design specs. Developers can avail of the changes by opting in and setting usematerial3 defaults as true.
To enhance the generated color schemes, color themes are made customizable so that the default colors of the M3 component are configured.
SearchBarTheme and SearchAnchorTheme widgets are a new addition that enables predictive text suggestions for search queries as users start typing. The app provides a list of matching responses that appears in the search view that users can select or modify after selection.
Datepicker and timepickers widgets are updated to improve the app’s appearance. An optional drag handle can also be added by setting showDragHandle to true. The spacing and positioning of the ListTile widget are also updated in M3.
In the attempt to support native gestures, all TextFields widgets are updated wherein double or triple clicking with the mouse performs the same action that double or triple tap on touchscreen digital devices. When double-click and tap are coupled with drag, the selection of words can be extended.
All text blocks, a line, and a paragraph block can be selected when any word is triple-clicked inside of a multi-line. Triple tap enables the selection of all text in a single line or a paragraph block.
Under the Flutter 3.10 release, the framework compiles with supply chain levels for software artifacts level 1. It’s followed by a couple of security features which are- a scripted build process, multi-party approval with audit logging, and provenance.
The first move towards support for SLSA level 1 allows the flutter community to step ahead and work on SLSA level 2 and 3 compliances. It enables the protection of artifacts before and after the build process.
When you dig deeper the guide for Flutter for web development, you get to know what makes Flutter best for web development and in which cases. It’s a delight for web developers, but there were some issues that developers faced in the releases before Flutter 3.10.
There were a lot of complaints about using Flutter for web development that are fixed in the latest release 3.10. for improving web loading times, the file size of icon fonts is reduced and glyphs from Material and Cupertino that are rarely used are removed. In the same vein, smaller custom CanvasKit flavors are available to use by Chromium browsers to enhance the app’s performance.
The shader support is enabled and element embedding is facilitated so that web apps are served from any element in a page.
Impeller that’s released under Flutter 3.7 version requires a lot of updates that the Flutter team received through user feedback that’s brought into action with the Flutter 3.10 release. Now, all the IOS apps are built using impeller by default and render great performance. Since its release, the impeller enhanced its memory footprint which further helps in reducing CPU and GPU, which ultimately brought performance gains.
Impeller for iOS team has allowed them to build and deliver features quickly. Community contributions also lend a hand in improving impeller. Right now, the impeller is available for iOS developers and Android developers need to wait as it’s not ready for preview.
This flutter release has fixed major performance issues that were not attempted to fix in the 3.7 release. The local images loading which is shifted to the Dart thread for preventing delays caused by vsync events from the platform thread in stable Flutter 3.7 resulted in jank creation. That’s why Flutter 3.10 shifted the decoding of local images from the Dart thread to the background thread to remove the long pauses on the screen created by local images. The testing results proved that this change reduced loading time to nearly half, which is good.
In the same vein, the bundle identifier lookup is fixed that increasing the app startup latency in proportion to the app’s size. The elimination of libtxt and minikin and respective flags in the SKparagraph library enabled reducing Flutter’s compressed size by 30KB. The Android feature enabled in the rendering pipeline for partial repaint that was experiencing an issue is now disabled.
The most surfaced issue with the API ecosystem that’s decoding APNG images is addressed in Flutter 3.10 wherein APNG images are loaded with Flutter’s existing image-loading APIs. One of the image loading APIs- dart: UI is improved with a new method- instantiateImageCodecWithSize that facilitates loading an image with original aspect ratio constraint, bounding box constraint, and unknown aspect ratio at loading time. It helps when the app needs to load one image from the collection of images.
The Flutter app development guide describes that cross-platform support makes Flutter the best choice to get an app developed forboth, iOS and Android platforms in reduced time. Flutter compiles the code ahead of time and enables iOS and Android app development that renders native-like performance. Still, developers looking for updates to enhance the native feel of the applications.
Android also received a few updates under Flutter 3.10 release umbrella. The major update includes extended support for the Camera X library that facilitates adding a unique camera functionality to the app. The functionality gets enabled across all the Android devices as support for Camera X- Jetpack library is added to the Flutter camera plugin. The library addition enables image capture, video recording, and display of live camera preview functionalities.
Flutter’s update for mobile iOS app development includes a series of changes that are-
The performance and debugging tools are enhanced under DevTools for the best Flutter app development. DevTools UI will use Material 3 which helps in improving the app’s design and accessibility. Now, in debug mode, the support for evaluations for running an app by DevTools consoles is feasible. The new timeline- Perfetto trace viewer is introduced that’s known for handling larger datasets and better performance.
Flutter has revolutionized the app development world since its release and with a series of updates rolled out to date. The future of Flutter looks bright especially since the framework which was known as the cross-platform development framework is enhanced to build apps for six different platforms. The major performance, security, and extended support updates for web, mobile, and others are an indication of the stability that Flutter has achieved with the Flutter 3.10 version.
Now, everything rests on developers’ shoulders as to how they experiment with new additions and modifications to come up with innovative solutions. Stay tuned to us to know how your business application reaps benefits with Flutter upgrades as the Flutter developers continue to experiment and explore.
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