April 21, 2022 by Rich Kurtzman, Brand Communications @ Fathym
Some companies pride themselves as being on the cutting edge.
Here at Fathym, we’ve been ahead of the curve for a long time when it comes to micro frontends.
In recent years, micro frontends have gained a great deal of popularity. That only makes things all the sweeter now that we’ve worked to become experts in the field and others are starting to catch on and catch up.
We’ve benefitted so much from utilizing the awesome advantages of micro frontends that we’ve been working towards helping others grow in the field. Let’s take a stroll down that very road as we help introduce you to micro frontends and five fantastic frameworks you should know.
Micro Frontends definition
Micro frontends means smaller, more agile, more autonomous frontends as opposed to the old-school way of doing things, a monolithic frontend.
Micro frontends are what the name suggests. They’re multiple, miniature pieces of a website’s front end that come together to give all the functionality, customization and power needed.
Micro frontends are:
Individual, independent, smaller frontends.
Multiple teams work on their own projects concurrently.
That means smaller, incremental deployments. One team isn’t waiting on another to push their deploy.
Smaller, more cohesive codebases. That makes them easier to maintain and change, too.
Allow for scaling teams as needed.
Give the ability to rewrite, change or update parts of frontend incrementally. That means fixing bugs or changing features of a site doesn’t force the site to be down for maintenance.
So, we’re introducing four frameworks any developer should know.
React was created in 2013 by Facebook and is used by their Instagram as well as Netflix and Dropbox, among others.
React’s learning curve is much less steep than Angular, partly because it’s not as robust.
It takes a little bit longer to set up than Angular does but React can help deliver a finished product more quickly than the competitor. It also offers out-of-the-box tools and vast libraries for developers to work with. React is best used for single-page applications (SPAs) and when there’s a quick turnaround time for the final product. It’s best known for not only its flexibility, but for richer user interfaces, fast rendering and overall can save time vs. Angular. There’s a large community for support, but also, they lack as solid of documentation as Angular.
Overall, Angular is defined as having a steeper learning curve than React and Vue, and that’s likely because it’s very complex. However, that means it’s also the one more likely to be utilized for larger-scale development. It’s known for its code consistency, for being high-performance and its ease of use once you’ve mounted that learning curve. They also have a good amount of documentation compared to some others. Angular is used by big-time companies like HBO, Forbes, PayPal and Sony.
While some enjoy using Angular or React, Vue is considered the easiest of the three to learn. It also features component-based architecture like those two competitors, has concise documentation and its tiny size helps sites run faster.
Vue is on the rise in terms of popularity, too.
Svelte is the new kid on the block compared to these other frameworks (and library), being introduced in 2016 by Rich Harris.
According to Stack Overflow’s 2021 survey, Svelte is the most loved framework of them all, with 71.47% of responding developers saying they loved it.
React was fourth (69.28%), Vue was fifth (64.41%) and Angular was ninth (55.82%).
When it comes to most-wanted – developers who weren’t using the framework, but wanted to – React was the clear winner with 25.12% wanting it. Vue was second (16.69%), Angular was fourth (8.47%) and Svelte was fifth (6.57%).
Honorable mention: Gatsby
Some argue micro frontends aren’t needed for smaller teams. But, we believe they help teams large or small. Some also say that they will create unnecessarily large payload sizes and therefore slow download speeds. We addressed that criticism here.
We’re excited about the present and the future of micro frontends. And we invite you to try them today.