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Javier Bonilla
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Would you like to use a great multi-platform toolkit to develop apps for mobile, web, desktop, and even embedded devices (Raspberry Pi) with a single codebase?

Then, do not miss this post which talks about Flutter on Raspberry Pi, the great open-source Google’ User Interface (UI) toolkit for building native applications in record time and now with community support for Raspberry Pi.

10 main Flutter features

  1. Flutter apps are written in the Dart language and make use of many of the language’s more advanced features.
  2. Flutter’s engine is written primarily in C++.
  3. Google’s Skia graphics library provides low-level rendering support.
  4. Flutter Foundation library is written in Dart and provides basic classes and functions which are used to construct applications using Flutter.
  5. Everything is a Widget in Flutter! Structural elements (button, menu, etc.), layouts (row, column, grid, etc.) and stylistic elements (font, color, etc.) are widgets in flutter.
  6. Programmers can create their own widgets from scratch or from other widgets.
  7. The UI design is achieved assembling Widgets.
  8. There are a lot Flutter and Dart packages for building apps easily and fast.
  9. The Flutter framework contains widgets conform to specific design languages. Material design widgets implement Google’s Material design, whereas Cupertino widgets implement Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines for iOS design.
  10. Flutter is multi-platform and can be used to develop apps for mobile, desktop, web and more.


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Brief Flutter history

Flutter dates back from 2015, when it was first presented as a technical preview product (called Sky) only running on Android devices at the 2015 Dart developer summit.

Flutter (sky) at 2015 dart developer summit

The first Flutter stable version was presented on December, 2018. This version targeted mobile devices with support for Android, iOS and the future Google Fuchsia operating system.

flutter 1.0 stable

Flutter went beyond mobile apps at 2019 Google I/O event, where a technical preview for Flutter web was first released. In the same event, a live demo for desktop apps was also introduced. This demo presented Flutter apps running on Windows, MacOS, Linux and Chrome OS.

Flutter is still a new technology, although Flutter for mobile devices is already stable. Flutter web is in technology preview state and Flutter desktop is under development.

How about flutter for Raspberry Pi?

Unfortunately, there is not yet official Flutter support for neither embedded devices nor Raspberry Pi. But this does not mean that you cannot run Flutter apps on your Raspberry pi.

Chinmay Garde, a senior software Google engineer, detailed how to port the Flutter engine to Raspberry Pi. Furthermore, the target device is not limited to Raspberry Pi, therefore the porting to other devices or boards is similar to the one introduced.

However, the porting process described by Chinmay is quite involved. Fortunately and to easy things up, Hannes is working in flutter-pi: a light-weight Flutter Engine Embedder for Raspberry Pi.

Flutter-pi is still at alpha stage and there are still some missing features: hot reload, hot restart, widget inspector, etc. But thanks to flutter-pi you can now run every flutter app on your Raspberry Pi, including extensions & plugins, only it is needed to build the plugins for Raspberry Pi.

Have a look at the flutter-pi repository for further details about how to run your apps on Raspberry Pi. You can even find releases in this repository.


I hope you enjoyed this article (let us know with the starts below) and like as much as we do flutter-pi. Also, share this article if you think it can be interesting to others, thanks!

Which are your impressions about Flutter support on Raspberry Pi? Are you already thinking about which apps will you port to Raspberry Pi? Have a look at it’s all widget: an open list of Flutter apps built with Flutter for some inspiration.

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1 year ago

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