Flutter 2.1 Has Stable Windows Support
Monday, 14 February 2022

Flutter 2.1 has been released with improvements including stable support for Windows, performance enhancements, new support for icons and colors in the framework, and some tooling improvements.

Flutter is Google's open source mobile UI framework for crafting  native interfaces on iOS and Android. It was created as a combination of Google's Dart programming language and a runtime environment that is referred to as an app engine in Flutter.

flutter

The headline change to this release is stable Windows support. In the previous version, developers had to set a flag to activate the features to produce Windows apps on the stable channel of Flutter, but this is no longer necessary. In addition to the default availability of Windows as a target, this release has improved text handling, keyboard handling, and keyboard shortcuts for Windows, along with better integration. The team say there's already an impressive number of Flutter packages and plugins already supporting Windows.

The Windows implementation of Flutter combines a Dart framework and C++ engine. Windows and Flutter communicate through an embedding layer that hosts the Flutter engine and is responsible for translating and dispatching Windows messages. Flutter coordinates with Windows to paint your UI to the screen, and handles events like window resizing and DPI changes.

flutter architecture

The performance improvements have been achieved by enabling partial repaints. So far this is only available for iOS/Metal, where it has reduced 90th and 99th percentile rasterization times on a few benchmarks by an order of magnitude, and reduced GPU utilization on these benchmarks from more than 90% to less than 10%. The team is planning to add partial repaints to other platforms in future releases.

Another area of performance improvements come from the internal picture recording format added in a previous release, and now being used for optimizations with impressive results. 

This release also sees the beginning of the transition to Material 3, which includes the ability to generate an entire color scheme from a single seed color. Material 3 is the next generation of Google's Material Design language that provides a system of guidelines, components, and tools that support the best practices of user interface design.

Flutter 2.1 is available now. 

flutter

More Information

Flutter Website

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Last Updated ( Monday, 14 February 2022 )