Developing mobile application using Flutter is becoming a very common approach and many people are now seeking to learn Flutter to build beautiful apps fro mobile. It supports fast and easy development since it works on multiple platforms including but not limited to Android, Desktop, and IOS.
There is no one static learning path for Flutter as the learning journey really depends on the person’s preferred way of learning and goals. But of course, it’s very important to have at least a roadmap to learn Flutter in a logical sequence that improves the learning phase.
Following a Flutter roadmap guides you and provide you with the correct direction to follow during your learning journey.
In this post, we’ll discuss the roadmap to become a Flutter developer in the most efficient and professional way.
Roadmap to become a flutter developer
The learning path for Flutter gradually levels up from a beginner stage up to a more advanced level. It’s really important to take it one step at a time and focus on the current step rather than thinking of the overall steps. Therefore it’s always recommended to avoid skipping essential topics and give it enough time to be absorbed and understood.
1 Learn basics of Dart
Before actually starting to learn Flutter, it’s a must to learn the programming language that Flutter uses which is Dart. How you learn the language depends on your prior experience and knowledge. If you already know a programming language such as Java, C++, or C then it’s easy for you to pick up Dart hence you only need to catch up the syntax difference. But if you have zero knowledge in programming then it’s recommended that you study Dart in details and understand the basic programming concepts.
Some of Dart basics that you must know are:
- Control Flow Statement
- Built-in data types: Numbers, Strings, Boolean, Lists, Maps, Sets, etc.
You can learn Dart using dart pad which is an open source tool that lets you practice the language in any browser. Once you’re familiar with Dart language, you can start learning Flutter and set up a development environment such as VS Code or Android Studio. Choosing an IDE really depends on your preference so don’t overthink it.
Widgets are the very first thing you need to learn in Flutter. Widgets are the building blocks of every Flutter app and they vary in types.
There are two basic widgets that you need to learn which are:
- Stateless widgets
- Stateful widgets
It’s fundamental to learn how what these widgets are, how to implement them, and the difference between them.Once you learn these you can move on to learn about other widgets like:
- Material Widgets: useful for material design
- Cupertino Widgets: useful for Human interface design
In addition to code, Flutter also includes assets (resources) which are basically files that are bundled and deployed with your app, and is accessible during runtime. This is something that you’ll definitely come across every time you build an app with Flutter as you always need to add an image, font, or whatever. Therefore I recommend that you invest some time to learn how to specify assets in Flutter.
4 Design principles
Now this is not a compulsory step at this time but I personally think that learning design principles at an early stage really makes it easier to adapt to them and implement them naturally. It’s totally optional but super useful.
Some the design principles that you’ll need to consider learning are:
- SOLID principle
- Design pattern
- OOP (Object_Oriented Programming)
5 JSON and Serializing
Let’s face the truth, it’s nearly impossible to think of an app that doesn’t have to communicate with a server and store data at some point. With this in mind, JSON is something that you need to use sooner or later when you need to exchange data between client and server. For this reason, it’s really good to learn about JSON parsing, serialization and de-serialization.
This is a follow-up step after learning JSON and serialization. Networking includes using APIs such as RESTful API to communicate with servers in form of JSON.
Once you learn all about JSON parsing, serializing, and networking, you need to learn how to store data. For this purpose you need to learn the following:
- SQLite: common used database among Android and iOS.
- Firebase: provides several services which includes Authentication, Firestore, Storge, Realtime Database, Push Notification, etc.
8 Advanced Dart
Till now I can say that you covered the basics so I believe that you can start learning more about advanced topics. In advanced Dart you learning things about:
- Functional Programming
- Async / await
- Futures and Streams
- Core libraries
Learning these topics at this level of the journey is pretty helpful to expand your knowledge on Dart and Flutter and allow you to become a more experienced Flutter developer.
9 State Management
As you explore Flutter, there will be a time when you need to share application state between screens, across your application. There are many approaches you can take to apply state management and these approaches include but not limited to:
- Flutter BLoC
Animation is not an exclusive topic to ensure that your app is functional but it’s a great way to improve user experience and it’s a nice plus to have. Animation includes various sub topics that you might want to consider learning, for example:
- Curved Animation
- Animation Controller
- Animated Builder
- Animated Widget
From my perspective, I believe that every developer should learn testing at some point of their journey. Testing is an essential part of apps development and it’s one of the most important factors of a successful, well implemented app.
Testing has different types that each plays a different part in apps development. Some of the testing approaches that you might want to consider are
- Unit testing
- Widget testing
- integration testing
12 Git and GitHub
These are another topics that, in my point of view, are a must to have in the developer’s bucket. Git and GitHub are very helpful and powerful tool for developers
13 Dev Tools
these includes things like Flutter inspector, Flutter Outline, memory allocation, etc. These tools help you improve your app’s performance hence I recommend you to take advantage of them
14 Flutter internals
At this point, you may want to consider start learning things like immutability, render objects, 3 Tree, and so on. Flutter internals will help you understand what is running behind the scenes so you get a kind of clearer picture of the process. You don’t need to go so deep with this topic but I recommend you briefly take a look at it.
15 Packages and Plugins
It’s good to make use of the already built packages instead of building everything from scratch. For this purpose, I would say that you should explore pub.dev library to check what’s in there.
16 Reactive programming
Reactive programming is a design approach that uses asynchronous programming logic to handle real-time adjustments to typically static information. Asynchronous is an advanced approach that’s commonly used in developing Flutter apps. RxDart is a good option to get your hand on reactive programming and understand how it works.
17 CI / CD
CI / CD is equivalent to Continuous Integration and Deployment which is a method to frequently deliver applications to users by automating the stages of app development. You might want to consider learning some of the following:
- Fast Lane
- GitHub Action
- Firebase App Dist
You should also learn how to add and use analytics to your apps as its useful to see how your app is doing. You may consider on of the following analytics tools:
- Google Analytics
- Firebase Analytics
- Mix Panel
It’s important to understand how app store works, how play store works, the guidelines and protocols you need to follow, the dos and dons, etc.
That was majorly what you need to learn in order to become a flutter developer. The roadmap is good guideline to help you track your progress and see how you’re going. No matter how far you progress, I’d say always keep learning and see what’s new out there.
I hope this roadmap is useful for your learning journey!
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