For the last few years, the name of the game for Google’s Flutter SDK has been expansion: expanding the number of Flutter developers and expanding the platforms for which they can make apps. The latest update, Flutter 2.10, makes it just as easy to make apps for Windows as it is for Android and iOS.

After starting out as a solid framework for Android and iOS apps, Flutter has gradually expanded to become massively cross-platform, with support for Mac (beta), Linux (beta), Fuchsia, the web, embedded platforms, and even unofficial offerings like Tizen OS. Back in 2020, Google unveiled their work toward making Flutter apps possible for Windows-based platforms — including UWP and Xbox app support — and this effort is finally coming to fruition.

With the release of Flutter 2.10, the toolkit’s support for making apps for Windows is now considered “stable,” meaning it’s fully ready for developers to use it to create apps used by the masses. In preparation for Flutter for Windows, Google has been working with third-party developers to ready a full ecosystem of plugins for Windows apps, including an in-depth project based on Microsoft’s Fluent design language.

Microsoft has also been involved with the preparation of Flutter’s Windows apps support, with the company contributing their collection of Fluent design icons. Previously, Microsoft has worked on Flutter with a package to help developers create apps for the Surface Duo series and other foldables.

We’re delighted to see Flutter adding support for creating Windows apps. Windows is an open platform, and we welcome all developers. We’re excited to see Flutter developers bring their experiences to Windows and also publish to the Microsoft Store. Flutter support for Windows is a big step for the community, and we can’t wait to see what you’ll bring to Windows!

— Kevin Gallo, Corporate Vice President for Windows Developer Platform at Microsoft

Along with the stable expansion of Flutter into Windows, the team is also sharing how Flutter developers and apps have been expanding. The SDK’s latest milestone is that there are now over 500,000 apps built with Flutter in the Google Play Store alone, “including big apps from companies like BMW, ByteDance and Betterment.” Relatedly, multiple developer surveys have shown that Flutter has over 40% market share among cross-platform toolkits, putting it ahead of Facebook’s React Native.

Of course, Flutter 2.10 also has some goodness in store for those who aren’t making Windows apps. Fans of Google’s Material Design will be pleased to find that Flutter now has a simple “useMaterial3” flag for enabling some Material You styled widgets. Elsewhere in Material You improvements, Flutter has a new “ColorScheme.fromSeed” option that can turn any single color into a full palette for your app, similar to how Android 12 themes apps from colors in your wallpaper.

Meanwhile, those developing for iOS should notice significantly reduced GPU usage, smoother keyboard animations, and reduced memory usage. And thanks to some improvements in the build process, all developers may notice Flutter app build times speed up by as much as 10%.

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Kyle Bradshaw

Kyle is an author and researcher for 9to5Google, with special interests in Made by Google products, Fuchsia, and Stadia.

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