Building An MVP quickly with Flutter

Building an MVP Quickly With Flutter

With all the latest funding rounds in the startup world, we can safely assume that investors are bullish on various technology based startups. However, we also need to understand the process through which these startups go in order to achieve their success. The first and foremost step is to do market research around their core idea and build the solution accordingly.
The second step is to build an MVP. A minimum viable product (MVP) is a product with just enough features to satisfy early customers, and to provide feedback for future product development. MVPs are basically used to make sure that the investment of time and money is not wasted on something which is not required by the market.

With an MVP, entrepreneurs can:

  • Minimize development costs
  • Assess their project/idea
  • Receive feedback
  • Convert prospective buyers into consumers
  • Save time and channelize your efforts
  • Attract potential investers

Building an MVP

MVP development is based on build-measure-learn process, with the goal to provide immediate value with minimum cost. At times, it might seem to be a long and laborious process, but it is about starting up with your key features and not about perfection.

For developing an MVP, you first need to find a way through which you want to get your product into the market, based on your resources, time and the risk involved. After which you need to prepare front-end, to understand potential users’ interest.

With the insights you have gathered, you can modify your product and scale up. This way you will be able to retain your early adopters and put your foot in the market.

One of the most important aspects of building an MVP is to identify the features which are absolutely crucial to execute the whole project.

For example, an MVP for a social networking app will definitely need a way for the users to follow other users and vice versa. After all, if you can’t follow someone, how would you build a network? However, your social network may or may not need features like video uploading, tagging etc.

In any case, a carefully crafted MVP can save your time and money. Moreover, it can increase your chances of bringing more investment, more users and scaling up.

The Economy of Apps

Mobile apps have changed the way we interact with the world, the society and ultimately with each other. This is not to say that the days of the Web are over, but rather the fact that mobile has revolutionized the way we consume content.

The global mobile population amounted to 3.7 billion unique users, according to January 2018 data. This and other statistics point to the fact that the world is going mobile as we speak. And to augment this rise, Google and Apple have created their respective mobile operating systems- Android and iOS, respectively.

The number of mobile phone users in the world is expected to pass the five billion mark by 2019. The number of smartphone users is forecast to grow from 2.1 billion in 2016 to around 2.5 billion in 2019, with smartphone penetration rates increasing as well.

With so many smartphone users, it’s very clear that the apps economy is bound to grow exceptionally. This was realized very early by the likes of Facebook, Google et al. So much so that Facebook has more traffic coming from their apps as compared to their web counterparts.

The Case of Mobile App MVPs

Now that we’ve understood the economy of apps, let’s understand how you, as an entrepreneur, can leverage it and build scalable businesses.

You must always remember one rule- it’s not just the idea but the execution that matters. And the first part of executing an idea is to build it’s MVP.

As we discussed above, an MVP can help you in building a very early version of your product with just the required functionalities. It thus helps you in saving both cost and time. Which means that even if the MVP fails to build the required momentum, you can shift your focus quickly without wasting your efforts. A failed MVP also tells you what worked and what didn’t. This way, you have a better understading before starting your next entrepreneurial stint.

In case of mobile apps, we believe that an MVP is a must. Why? Simply because of the competition. Even though you have the greatest idea on the planet, you need feedback from your users. Now, instead of building a full-blown app which requires lots of time, money and energy, we suggest that you first build an MVP.

There are two major mobile operating systems- Android and iOS. And hence, you need two separate apps for both the platforms and ecosystems. This is followed by the fact that you’ve to hire two different app developers, maintain two different code bases.

It’s observed that almost 90% of the functionality are similar both the apps, at least when building an MVP. Then why build two separate apps? Not just building, it comes with added maintenance, resources, time and cost.

In order to build an MVP that’s cross-platform, you can use cross-platform tools to build apps from a single code base. Of course, it goes without saying that these tools have some limitations as compared to native tools meant for native apps. But then, we want to build quickly, reach out to the market, gather feedback and understand whether our idea will work or not.

Some of the most popular cross platform tools for app development are-

  • Apache Cordova
  • Ionic
  • React-Native
  • Flutter

Of all these, React Native and Flutter are the most used tools by developers worldwide.

Why Flutter for your MVP?

Cross-platform development has always been a problem to tackle for app developers. Since everybody wants to optimize their costs, deliver quality along with native-like performance, many solutions have been built by various organizations across the world.

Solutions like React Native and Ionic have delivered what they promised. However, they lack one important aspect- performance. Since they primarily interpreted JavaScript to render the views, complex apps took a performance hit. Companies like AirBnB are already moving away from React Native as we speak.

So, what if there was a solution which provides excellent performance along with all the advantages of cross-platform development? Flutter, developed by Google, is one such solution.

Here are some advantage of Flutter-

  • Support for both Material Design and Cupertino Widgets
  • Excellent development environments (Android Studio and VS Code)
  • See changes instantly with Hot Reload
  • Native-like performance even with complex UIs
  • Reactive Framework- Write less, do more

Flutter is not just developer friendly, but it’s business friendly too. Using Flutter, you can build your MVP in record time. Flutter also has libraries for Firebase which means that you can build the backend for your MVP and integrate it seamlessly with Flutter.

Since Google is behind Flutter and is investing a lot of their energy and time, we can safely say that Flutter is here to stay. The community is excellent and is very friendly towards newbie developers.

Closing Notes

Some things are very clear in our discussion above:

  • The Mobile Web is booming
  • Smartphones are replacing dumb-phones rapidly
  • Content is being consumed at an unprecedented rate on apps
  • Apps are here to stay
  • MVPs are a must when it comes to starting a tech-based business
  • Flutter can build your MVP better, faster, cheaper than other tools including native ones

We’ve been building Flutter based MVPs internally and for our clients since Flutter’s inception. We believe that while other tools are good, Flutter is far better when it comes to performance. We also believe that not just MVPs but full-blown cross-platform apps can be made with confidence in Flutter.

Have an idea to build? Get your MVP in no time. Get in touch with us today.