Google announced Flutter, back in 2015 as a cross-platform UI, which is used to develop applications for Android, iOS, Linux, Mac, Windows, Google Fuchsia, and the web from a single codebase. In June, Google said that it is awaiting the assistance from Microsoft to expand Flutter to Microsoft. On September 23, Google announced the alpha release of Flutter support for Windows. With native desktop support, Flutter developers can enjoy improved developer tooling on Windows.
The release was awaited for a long time, considering that this is the world’s leading desktop operating system with about 1 billion installations for Windows 10 alone.
Utilizing Dart programming language, Flutter enables developers to build apps which run on each platform as it is native, sharing as much code as possible to avoid doubling of efforts and covering differences where they exist.
Flutter wants developers to be able to pay more attention on what they want to design, rather than which device they’re building for. This is probably more suitable for small companies or freelance developers without the resources to target multiple platforms individually.
Developers already have an opportunity to write apps using Flutter and target Windows devices, including desktop PCs. The aim has been adding support for desktop mouse and cursor interaction paradigms instead of just touch for phones. Google said that its own data shows that more than half of all Flutter developers use Windows already, so offering native desktop support for Microsoft’s omnipresent operating system makes a great deal of sense.
The developers’ team working on Flutter understands that there is a lot do on for Windows, including adding features for “accessibility, globalization and localization, enhanced keyboard and text handling, support for command-line arguments, and more”. This alpha release gives a solid foundation that will be stabilized over the coming months. With support for Windows 7 and above, Flutter support for Windows gives enterprising developers something to get started with.