Riyad Amin

Riyad Amin


How to running a Flutter web app and API on Node.js

There are a plethora of cross-platform app development frameworks that allow you to code an app once and run it on multiple platforms like Android, iOS, and even on a desktop. You may have heard of popular frameworks like Ionic, Xamarin, and React Native. Another framework that is relatively new on the scene is Flutter.

In this article, you will learn a bit about Flutter, with a particular focus on web support, which recently became available as a technical preview in version 1.9. You will add web support to an existing Flutter app and run it on a Node.js server alongside a simple API.

Flutter at a glance

Flutter is one of Google’s solutions to cross-platform development. While it is fairly new on the scene, its feature set makes it an instant competitor in this space.

It compiles your app down to native code that runs on iOS or Android, resulting in incredible end-user performance and frame rates. It supports stateful hot reloading during development, meaning you can make changes to your code and watch them get applied on your emulator or physical device with no need to restart your app or lose your app state.

Flutter’s primary focus has been iOS and Android. With the 1.9 release, web support has been added as a technical preview. It is still in its early days, and it may not be production-ready just yet, but it is certainly exciting and promising. Minimal changes are required to take an existing Flutter app and compile it into an HTML, CSS, and JS bundle, as you will soon see.

Why run a Flutter web app on Node.js?

Flutter web apps can run on any web server. So why would you want to host your Flutter web app on a Node.js server? Well, to be honest, for many of the same reasons that you’d choose Node.js for your other web apps and APIs: it is incredibly good at servicing large volumes of simple requests, you can code your front end and back end in JavaScript, and so on.

You might already have a Node.js API that serves data to your Flutter iOS or Android apps. Compiling your Flutter app as a web app and hosting it on your existing Node.js server might be a logical extension to your current solution, with no need to add additional hosting costs to the equation.


It’s time to dive into the code and see Flutter web in action. In order to follow along with the example, you will need the following tools:

  • Android Studio (Android SDK manager and emulator)

  • Visual Studio Code + Flutter extension (or Android Studio)

  • Node.js 12

Flutter has fantastic developer documentation. If this is your first time developing a Flutter app, follow the “Get started” guide to get all your tools set up.

You will have the opportunity to choose which editor you want to develop in. The examples and instructions in this article are based on Visual Studio Code, but you should still be able to follow along if you choose to use Android Studio instead.

A Node.js 12 server is required to run the web version of the Flutter weather app as well as the back-end weather API.

Step 1: Explore the sample code

In order to demonstrate how to add web support to an existing Flutter app, we will start with a simple weather app that has been tested on Android 10 (API level 29).
This is image title

The weather app allows the user to view the current weather for a predefined list of cities. Weather data is retrieved from a back-end server running on Node.js.

Clone the source code for the weather app and server from GitHub:

Tip: The weather-app-nodejs-server repository has a flutter-web-support branch that contains the completed version of the app copied to the server with Flutter web support enabled.

It is best to clone both repositories beside each other in the same parent folder. The contents of the weather_app_flutter repository will be built and copied to a folder within the weather-app-nodejs-server repository.

Explore the Flutter weather app

Open the weather_app_flutter repository in your editor. Let’s take a closer look at the main.dart file. It contains the scaffolding and widgets that make up the app’s user interface. The Home widget class has a fetchWeatherData function that calls the back-end weather API to retrieve data and update the widget’s state:

fetchWeatherData({String location}) async {
    var url = WEATHER_API_URL + location;
    final response = await http.get(url);
    if (response.statusCode == 200) {
      var jsonResponse = convert.jsonDecode(response.body);
      setState(() {
        this._weatherData = WeatherData(
        this._apiError = null;
    } else {
      setState(() {
        this._apiError =
            'Unable to retrieve weather data from API (HTTP ${response.statusCode})';

The fetchWeatherData function uses Dart’s http package to connect to the server over HTTP. There are other Dart packages that you could use, but this is the officially recommended package if you plan on adding web support to your Flutter app.

Also make note of the WEATHER_API_URL constant. Update the value of this constant before running the app so that it can connect to the API running on your local Node.js server. The URL must contain your machine’s hostname. A localhost URL will not be accessible to the Android emulator or physical device.

Explore the Node.js server and weather API

Open up the weather-app-nodejs-server repository in your editor.

This is image title

There are a few important files and folders to review:

  • The public/api-test.html file can be used to quickly test that your server is working as expected after startup (e.g., http://localhost:3000/api-test.html)

  • The routes/weather.js file contains a simple GET API that accepts a path parameter and returns weather data (e.g., http://localhost:3000/api/weather/londonon)

  • The public-flutter folder is where you will copy the compiled web version of the weather app. The Node.js server is set up to serve files from this directory to the root context (e.g., http://localhost:3000)

Step 2: Add web support to the Flutter app

Since web support is still a technical preview, you need the latest in-development version of Flutter, also referred to as the master channel. In the root folder of the weather_app_flutter repository, run the following commands:

flutter channel master
flutter upgrade

Tip: You may encounter an “Unknown operating system. Cannot install Dart SDK.” error on Windows when running Flutter commands in a bash shell in Visual Studio Code. Try running the commands in a normal Windows command shell.

The upgrade process may take a few minutes. Next, you will need to enable web support in your Flutter installation so that it is available to this and other apps you develop on this workstation:

flutter config --enable-web
flutter devices

Once web support is enabled, you will see a new Chrome device in the device list. Restart Visual Studio Code after running these commands to refresh the device list menu if you don’t see Chrome in that list yet.

To add web support to the weather app, you need to run this command in the top-level folder of theweather_flutter_apprepository:

flutter create .

The create command will make a few modifications to the app, which you can see in this commit. The most notable change is the addition of a web subfolder that contains an index.html:

This is image title

Start the Node.js server by running this command in the root of the weather-app-nodejs-server repository:

npm start

Select Chrome from the device list in Visual Studio Code and then start the debugging. Alternatively, you can run the following flutter command:

flutter run -d chrome

The first time you start the app in Chrome may take a little longer while Flutter downloads additional dependencies on the fly. Chrome will eventually open, and you will see the weather app running in the browser. Some of the styling will be slightly different than what you saw on the emulator or physical device.

This is image title

At this point, you will notice that the app is not displaying any data from the weather API. If you open Chrome DevTools, you will see a cross-origin resource sharing error.

The browser is not allowing the request to be made from the Flutter web server to the Node.js server since they are running on different ports. You could solve this problem by enabling cross-origin resource sharing on the server or installing a Chrome plugin to disable CORS.

We are going to ignore the error for now since in the next step we will run the pre-compiled Flutter web code directly on the Node.js server, thus eliminating the cross-origin requests altogether.

Try making a change to some of the code in the main.dart file and let Flutter recompile your app. You will notice that your changes do not immediately appear in the browser. This is because Flutter web does not yet support hot stateful reloading. Hopefully support for this awesome capability will come soon.

Tip: A detailed explanation of each of the Flutter commands in this section is available on flutter.dev.

Step 3: Run the Flutter web app on Node.js

Now that you can run the weather app in the browser using Flutter, the next step is to build and copy it to the Node.js server to run alongside the API.

To build a Flutter web app bundle, run this command:

flutter build web

The build command will produce the build/web folder containing all the static files that make up the weather app.

This is image title

Copy the contents of weather_app_flutter/build/web to weather-app-nodejs-server/public-flutter. If your Node.js server in is still running, stop it and restart it to pick up the new files.

Access your Node.js server in the browser at http://localhost:3000 to see your app running on Node.js. This time, your app will display weather data retrieved from the weather API without the cross-origin resource sharing error.

This is image title

Final thoughts

It is incredible how simple it was to take an existing Flutter app and compile it into a web app ready to be deployed to a web server. The user interface rendered in the browser looks nearly identical to the user interface in Android.

Tread lightly if you are considering Flutter as your cross-platform app framework solely because of its web support. The Flutter team is very clear that web support is missing features, has known performance issues, and is not quite ready for production yet.

One thing is for sure: the future of Flutter for web looks promising. You can read more about the Flutter web support and Project Hummingbird here.

#Flutter #nodejs #javascript

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How to running a Flutter web app and API on Node.js

Google's Flutter 1.20 stable announced with new features - Navoki

Flutter Google cross-platform UI framework has released a new version 1.20 stable.

Flutter is Google’s UI framework to make apps for Android, iOS, Web, Windows, Mac, Linux, and Fuchsia OS. Since the last 2 years, the flutter Framework has already achieved popularity among mobile developers to develop Android and iOS apps. In the last few releases, Flutter also added the support of making web applications and desktop applications.

Last month they introduced the support of the Linux desktop app that can be distributed through Canonical Snap Store(Snapcraft), this enables the developers to publish there Linux desktop app for their users and publish on Snap Store.  If you want to learn how to Publish Flutter Desktop app in Snap Store that here is the tutorial.

Flutter 1.20 Framework is built on Google’s made Dart programming language that is a cross-platform language providing native performance, new UI widgets, and other more features for the developer usage.

Here are the few key points of this release:

Performance improvements for Flutter and Dart

In this release, they have got multiple performance improvements in the Dart language itself. A new improvement is to reduce the app size in the release versions of the app. Another performance improvement is to reduce junk in the display of app animation by using the warm-up phase.


If your app is junk information during the first run then the Skia Shading Language shader provides for pre-compilation as part of your app’s build. This can speed it up by more than 2x.

Added a better support of mouse cursors for web and desktop flutter app,. Now many widgets will show cursor on top of them or you can specify the type of supported cursor you want.

Autofill for mobile text fields

Autofill was already supported in native applications now its been added to the Flutter SDK. Now prefilled information stored by your OS can be used for autofill in the application. This feature will be available soon on the flutter web.


A new widget for interaction

InteractiveViewer is a new widget design for common interactions in your app like pan, zoom drag and drop for resizing the widget. Informations on this you can check more on this API documentation where you can try this widget on the DartPad. In this release, drag-drop has more features added like you can know precisely where the drop happened and get the position.

Updated Material Slider, RangeSlider, TimePicker, and DatePicker

In this new release, there are many pre-existing widgets that were updated to match the latest material guidelines, these updates include better interaction with Slider and RangeSliderDatePicker with support for date range and time picker with the new style.


New pubspec.yaml format

Other than these widget updates there is some update within the project also like in pubspec.yaml file format. If you are a flutter plugin publisher then your old pubspec.yaml  is no longer supported to publish a plugin as the older format does not specify for which platform plugin you are making. All existing plugin will continue to work with flutter apps but you should make a plugin update as soon as possible.

Preview of embedded Dart DevTools in Visual Studio Code

Visual Studio code flutter extension got an update in this release. You get a preview of new features where you can analyze that Dev tools in your coding workspace. Enable this feature in your vs code by _dart.previewEmbeddedDevTools_setting. Dart DevTools menu you can choose your favorite page embed on your code workspace.

Network tracking

The updated the Dev tools comes with the network page that enables network profiling. You can track the timings and other information like status and content type of your** network calls** within your app. You can also monitor gRPC traffic.

Generate type-safe platform channels for platform interop

Pigeon is a command-line tool that will generate types of safe platform channels without adding additional dependencies. With this instead of manually matching method strings on platform channel and serializing arguments, you can invoke native class and pass nonprimitive data objects by directly calling the Dartmethod.

There is still a long list of updates in the new version of Flutter 1.2 that we cannot cover in this blog. You can get more details you can visit the official site to know more. Also, you can subscribe to the Navoki newsletter to get updates on these features and upcoming new updates and lessons. In upcoming new versions, we might see more new features and improvements.

You can get more free Flutter tutorials you can follow these courses:

#dart #developers #flutter #app developed #dart devtools in visual studio code #firebase local emulator suite in flutter #flutter autofill #flutter date picker #flutter desktop linux app build and publish on snapcraft store #flutter pigeon #flutter range slider #flutter slider #flutter time picker #flutter tutorial #flutter widget #google flutter #linux #navoki #pubspec format #setup flutter desktop on windows

Aria Barnes

Aria Barnes


Why use Node.js for Web Development? Benefits and Examples of Apps

Front-end web development has been overwhelmed by JavaScript highlights for quite a long time. Google, Facebook, Wikipedia, and most of all online pages use JS for customer side activities. As of late, it additionally made a shift to cross-platform mobile development as a main technology in React Native, Nativescript, Apache Cordova, and other crossover devices. 

Throughout the most recent couple of years, Node.js moved to backend development as well. Designers need to utilize a similar tech stack for the whole web project without learning another language for server-side development. Node.js is a device that adjusts JS usefulness and syntax to the backend. 

What is Node.js? 

Node.js isn’t a language, or library, or system. It’s a runtime situation: commonly JavaScript needs a program to work, however Node.js makes appropriate settings for JS to run outside of the program. It’s based on a JavaScript V8 motor that can run in Chrome, different programs, or independently. 

The extent of V8 is to change JS program situated code into machine code — so JS turns into a broadly useful language and can be perceived by servers. This is one of the advantages of utilizing Node.js in web application development: it expands the usefulness of JavaScript, permitting designers to coordinate the language with APIs, different languages, and outside libraries.

What Are the Advantages of Node.js Web Application Development? 

Of late, organizations have been effectively changing from their backend tech stacks to Node.js. LinkedIn picked Node.js over Ruby on Rails since it took care of expanding responsibility better and decreased the quantity of servers by multiple times. PayPal and Netflix did something comparative, just they had a goal to change their design to microservices. We should investigate the motivations to pick Node.JS for web application development and when we are planning to hire node js developers. 

Amazing Tech Stack for Web Development 

The principal thing that makes Node.js a go-to environment for web development is its JavaScript legacy. It’s the most well known language right now with a great many free devices and a functioning local area. Node.js, because of its association with JS, immediately rose in ubiquity — presently it has in excess of 368 million downloads and a great many free tools in the bundle module. 

Alongside prevalence, Node.js additionally acquired the fundamental JS benefits: 

  • quick execution and information preparing; 
  • exceptionally reusable code; 
  • the code is not difficult to learn, compose, read, and keep up; 
  • tremendous asset library, a huge number of free aides, and a functioning local area. 

In addition, it’s a piece of a well known MEAN tech stack (the blend of MongoDB, Express.js, Angular, and Node.js — four tools that handle all vital parts of web application development). 

Designers Can Utilize JavaScript for the Whole Undertaking 

This is perhaps the most clear advantage of Node.js web application development. JavaScript is an unquestionable requirement for web development. Regardless of whether you construct a multi-page or single-page application, you need to know JS well. On the off chance that you are now OK with JavaScript, learning Node.js won’t be an issue. Grammar, fundamental usefulness, primary standards — every one of these things are comparable. 

In the event that you have JS designers in your group, it will be simpler for them to learn JS-based Node than a totally new dialect. What’s more, the front-end and back-end codebase will be basically the same, simple to peruse, and keep up — in light of the fact that they are both JS-based. 

A Quick Environment for Microservice Development 

There’s another motivation behind why Node.js got famous so rapidly. The environment suits well the idea of microservice development (spilling stone monument usefulness into handfuls or many more modest administrations). 

Microservices need to speak with one another rapidly — and Node.js is probably the quickest device in information handling. Among the fundamental Node.js benefits for programming development are its non-obstructing algorithms.

Node.js measures a few demands all at once without trusting that the first will be concluded. Many microservices can send messages to one another, and they will be gotten and addressed all the while. 

Versatile Web Application Development 

Node.js was worked in view of adaptability — its name really says it. The environment permits numerous hubs to run all the while and speak with one another. Here’s the reason Node.js adaptability is better than other web backend development arrangements. 

Node.js has a module that is liable for load adjusting for each running CPU center. This is one of numerous Node.js module benefits: you can run various hubs all at once, and the environment will naturally adjust the responsibility. 

Node.js permits even apportioning: you can part your application into various situations. You show various forms of the application to different clients, in light of their age, interests, area, language, and so on. This builds personalization and diminishes responsibility. Hub accomplishes this with kid measures — tasks that rapidly speak with one another and share a similar root. 

What’s more, Node’s non-hindering solicitation handling framework adds to fast, letting applications measure a great many solicitations. 

Control Stream Highlights

Numerous designers consider nonconcurrent to be one of the two impediments and benefits of Node.js web application development. In Node, at whatever point the capacity is executed, the code consequently sends a callback. As the quantity of capacities develops, so does the number of callbacks — and you end up in a circumstance known as the callback damnation. 

In any case, Node.js offers an exit plan. You can utilize systems that will plan capacities and sort through callbacks. Systems will associate comparable capacities consequently — so you can track down an essential component via search or in an envelope. At that point, there’s no compelling reason to look through callbacks.


Final Words

So, these are some of the top benefits of Nodejs in web application development. This is how Nodejs is contributing a lot to the field of web application development. 

I hope now you are totally aware of the whole process of how Nodejs is really important for your web project. If you are looking to hire a node js development company in India then I would suggest that you take a little consultancy too whenever you call. 

Good Luck!

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If you look at the backend technology used by today’s most popular apps there is one thing you would find common among them and that is the use of NodeJS Framework. Yes, the NodeJS framework is that effective and successful.

If you wish to have a strong backend for efficient app performance then have NodeJS at the backend.

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JavaScript thrives in building dynamic web applications, the Internet of Things, and microservices. It’s increasing traction faster than any other technology also ranks in the top most-in-demand developer skills. The most important advantages of Node.js includes building real-time web apps.

Get the top-quality Node.js development services from Skenix Infotech, contact now to know more about our Node.js services & pricing: https://www.skenix.com/

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