What Is Angular?
The Angular front-end framework is the second technology revolution to come from the same team just 6 years after the first. While AngularJS transformed the way we think about web technologies in 2010, Angular transformed the way we think about PWAs (progressive web apps) and SPAs in 2016.
When launched by Google, the framework shifted from being a small side-project of a few of its engineers to being a key component within the internet giant’s technology stack.
Built to address the modern requirements of the web, Angular 2 took some bold steps in its design and engineering. Most notably, the framework took the step to break the upgrade chain for previous AngularJS apps. While creating challenges and difficulties for development teams at the time, it proved to be a necessary step to ensure the framework could create efficient and productive apps long into the future.
Today, Angular 9 offers developers modern tools and technologies to create highly productive apps with remarkable engineering credentials. The framework boasts of being capable of scaling from a single-developer project to enterprise-level services with relative ease. Today, the framework is one that puts high-quality engineering front and center among its concerns.
The primary way the front-end framework achieves these goals can be broken down into three factors that impact Angular development services. These factors are:
- A component-based framework for building scalable web apps. Encapsulating functionality into discrete components ensures high-quality engineering is at the forefront of design choices. Dependency injection aids in maintaining modular components within this structure and ensures developers adhere to modern architecture of development
- A strong collection of well-integrated libraries. The Angular ecosystem has a strong base that covers a wide variety of features including routing, forms, management, and client-server communication amongst others
- Exceptional developer tooling. Recognizing that strong tooling and productive engineering are key to robust apps, Angular’s tools to assist in the development, testing, maintenance, and upgrades are amongst some of the best available in any modern web framework available today
One of the key drawbacks of Angular’s drastic shift in engineering is a difficulty in migrating away from AngularJS. The differences between the two frameworks represent far more than a simple translation can provide. While successive upgrades from Angular 2 through to Angular 9 are made much easier, and often automated, many organizations have found the initial shift a tough one to navigate.
The rewards, for organizations building an Angular app from scratch, or migrating from legacy versions of AngularJS are well worth the initial investment.
Benefits of Angular
For organizations utilizing the skill sets of technical teams, the benefits of the framework mean practical advantages in reaching, engaging, and providing services to users that deliver on the promises of the brand. The features of the framework and the services it delivers within organizations include:
- Component-based architecture. The most significant shift away from AngularJS is a transition from MVC (Model-View-Controller) to a more dynamic architecture featuring a strict hierarchy of individual components. The advantages this unlocks in code reuse, code quality, and architecture opportunities make it a shift well worth the effort
- Dependency Injection. Increasingly common in engineering projects today, dependency injection allows for a component’s dependencies to be defined externally—reducing the coupling between application components and their underlying architecture, further improving re-usability, management, and testing
- Typescript. Another drastic shift from AngularJS, targeting TypeScript as the primary language has enabled the framework to improve tooling, maintain cleaner code, and increase the scalability of its apps
- Directives. Allowing developers to tightly control the DOM (Document Object Model), directives create the opportunity for engineers to customize the behavior or appearance of HTML content to create highly dynamic applications
- Community. Since the initial release of AngularJS, it has become an intensely popular framework amongst developers. That same strong community has followed on to the present day, making Angular one of the top 3 most popular web frameworks used by professionals. A side-effect of such strong support is exceptional documentation, guides, assistance, and discussion for teams leaning on community resources
Our guide to the differences between AngularJS and another modern web framework, ReactJS highlights the pros and cons of the framework and its use today in software engineering.
Drawbacks of Angular
Angular’s bold engineering choices are far from a one-size-fits-all approach. Decisions made, such as breaking the upgrade chain for AngularJS apps, come with considerations organizations have to make before leaning on the technology to deliver critical services. These include:
- The complex decision to migrate from AngularJS to Angular. The vast difference that exists between the two platforms means translating from one to the other is rarely straightforward. As legacy apps scale, the complexity, time, and frustration involved grows exponentially with demand. While the final result is well worth the investment, starting with a clean slate to deploy your next angular app could be the best option for many companies
- Steep learning curve. Combining the challenges of Angular, getting to grips with TypeScript, and learning the additional libraries available into a single objective is a tough task. Developers coming to the framework from another technology can face an uphill battle
- Heavyweight approach. Angular is well-known for creating dependable and robust web apps with strong performance. For small throwaway prototypes and one-off apps build by individual developers, the framework may require too much time investment for an app that’s going to be thrown away relatively soon
Companies that know how to hire the right teams to overcome these challenges are putting themselves in the driving seat when it comes to creating competitive web apps. A key strategy in achieving these goals is to hire experienced Angular Development Service providers with the knowledge and tooling necessary to build efficient, performant, and reliable Angular apps from the ground up.
Reducing the time and costs on major projects by getting to the heart of the framework’s challenges, experienced Angular teams can avoid the worst of the pitfalls and drawbacks to create sustainable and dependable apps that last.
Pangea can help by connecting you with Angular teams that have been vetted and assessed as some of the highest quality development teams available for hire. Gain access to the best available Angular talent by telling us what you need and letting us do the rest.