They each have their pros and cons, an evolving status quo further confused by the fact that every 6 months or so marks the release of a new version of these two framework products. How have Angular and React developed as of the end of 2018 and which is the optimal choice for your application? Let’s find out!
Here’s what Angular provides directly out-of-the-box:
-Templates, based on an extended version of HTML
-Ajax requests by @angular/HTTP
-Routing, provided by @angular/router
-Component CSS encapsulation
-Utilities for unit-testing components
-@angular/forms for building forms
The thing to remember is that the possibilities all of this functionality provides can also represent restrictions. One of React’s major strengths is that it offers more freedom and room for experiment.
React provides the following “out of the box”:
-Instead of classic templates, it has JSX, an XML-like language built on top.
-No dependency injection
-Fetch for Ajax requests
-Utilities for unit-testing components
A unique advantage of React is its virtual DOM. It’s what makes it so incredibly fast. In contrast, Angular implements a regular DOM, which drastically affects its performance. On the basis of speed-based user experience (UX), Angular loses out here.
States are an unavoidable reality for any application. To deal app states, React developers often resort to Redux. However, in Angular, you may not need Redux unless your application is a big one. Some developers prefer to use MobX rather than Redux. To understand which option suits you better, we encourage you to do some more research on both of them and experiment a little.
One major distinction between React and Angular is their different approaches to binding. Angular uses two-way binding, which you can see when changing the UI element. Here, the corresponding model state changes as well, and vice versa.
React only has one-way binding. First, the model state needs to be updated, which then renders the change in the UI element. That said, if you change the UI element the model state does not change. The developer must figure that out for themselves.
Angular’s method is initially easier. However, as the project becomes larger, React’s approach provides for a better data overview. Both concepts have their advantages and disadvantages. You need to understand the concepts and determine if this influences your decision regarding a framework.
Angular and React both offer solutions for creating mobile applications.
Angular offers Ionic, a framework for developing hybrid mobile applications. It includes a Cordova container and a robust UI component library. However, the resulting app is simply a web app inside of a native web view container. As a result Ionic-based Angular apps can lag.
React Native, conversely, is a platform developed by Facebook for creating truly native mobile applications using React. The syntax is slightly different, but there are many more similarities than differences. Unlike Ionic, React Native produces a truly native UI for the app. It also allows you to create your own components and bind them to native code written in Objective-C, Java, or Swift.
While writing React code, you will most likely use Jest from Facebook to test what you have written. Jest is incorporated into almost every React project and requires some additional configuration by the developer. It also includes a first-rate mocking library.
Implementing the Angular framework, you’ll deal with Jasmine. Eric Elliott says that Jasmine “results in millions of ways to write tests and assertions, needing to carefully read each one to understand what it’s doing”. The output is also overcomplicated and hard to read.
A significant consideration when choosing a new technology to work with is to examine its learning curve and assess how it fits into your previous experience.
For React, you will need to know:
-how to write components
-how to manage the internal state
-how to use props for configuration
-a routing library (since React doesn’t come with one).
-state management with Redux or MobX.
In Angular, you will need to know:
The entry barrier for Angular is objectively higher than for React. The number of new concepts it introduces can be frustrating for newbies. However, that doesn’t mean that React is “easy to learn and use”. We advise you to try both React and Angular to see which is better for you.
HUGE companies are utilizing both React and Angular. We’re talking about some of the biggest in the world. Here is just a small sample:
The relative merits of React and Angular will be always a contentious topic. At the end of the day they are both quality technologies that offer a lot. Angular vs. React is the web development equivalent of Apple vs. Android or Adidas vs. Nike. The reality is that there is no “best” framework. There are still developers that only want to work with Ember and that’s great if it works for you. We choose our library, framework or any other technology to be used to build an application according to how well it suits us under given conditions at a specific point in time.
Sometimes it’s Angular, other times React and we also use other frameworks such as Vue. Some of our team, given a choice, would always choose Vue ahead of either React or Angular. Others switch between the three without giving it a second thought and depending on the team they are working in and the app the team is working on.
K&C are a Munich-best web development agency and IT services consultancy with over 20 years of experience. Our front end experts boast a wealth of experience building applications for our partners.
K&C's Angular and React developers have helped realise applications that range from enterprise-level portals for some of Europe's best known brands to single page applications and mobile applications for hugely promising start-ups.
With experience across all contemporary front and back end web development technologies, including Vue and jQuery, we'd love to help you decide the optimal technology solution for your needs. There's rarely a definitively objective 'best choice' between Angular, React and the other framework options. But by looking back on our developers' experience and your business's priorities we can reach a strong consensus together.
Tech expertise should be a given for a web development agency with K&C's history. We know that the missing ingredient you are looking for in a partner is communication, reliability and price. Our nearshored offices in Ukraine and Poland, combined with our rigorous German management add the 'soft' strengths that mean working with us is a pleasure. And we're sure working with you will be a pleasure for us!
We'd love to hear about your Angular or React project. So please do get in touch!