A 2022 Battle of Blazor vs Angular

A 2022 Battle of Blazor vs Angular

The amount of different frameworks available to developers all around the world is growing day by day. That fact alone makes the decision to choose one much harder.

The question is: who wins the battle of Blazor vs Angular? Or is it even possible to compare frameworks in an honest and unbiased way? Keep on reading and let’s find the answer together.

Angular

Angular

What is it?

Based on TypeScript (on the contrary to its outdated predecessor AngularJS, which was a JavaScript framework), Angular is one of the most popular open-source web frameworks available on the market. With the help of the framework, developers can create interactive user interfaces, single-page applications, progressive web apps, enterprise web apps, and more.

How did Angular come to life, though? Well, it’s not a complicated story. At first, AngularJS seemed sufficient for all projects. In time, however, it started to require more and more tweaks, like new JavaScript standards, lack of vision for the future, and even more other limitations. So many, in fact, that in 2014 Google decided it was time for a change. That’s when the entire AngularJS framework was rewritten and turned into what we now know as Angular (the support for AngularJS ended on the 31st of December, 2021).

Advantages

Even though Angular is loved for what it is, just like everything else in this world, it has both advantages and disadvantages. So without further ado, let’s dive into them right now. 

Constant Support

Since Angular is Google’s framework, all of us can rest assured that updates will be released in a timely fashion and will continue in the future. The future itself looks bright for Angular and the support definitely won’t be halted anytime soon.

And it’s not just Google. Angular has a dedicated community of developers that support it as well, and who actively participate in the development of the framework, be it plugins, tools, or more. If you’re facing a task that seems a little bit too much to handle by yourself, the community folk will surely do their best to help you out.

TypeScript

Clean, understandable, and most importantly, predictable code can be attributed to TypeScript. Thanks to the usage of this programming language, Angular can handle more than AngularJS could ever have, for example, larger codebases.

Server-Side Rendering

Web app builders can take a deep breath and relax as Angular is in fact friendly towards SEO actions — under certain conditions, though. An example of such a thing could be developing server-side, rather than client-side applications with the help of Angular Universal. By doing so, developers can greatly increase the chances of the website being indexed by Google and its visibility in Search Engine Result Pages (SERP).

Detailed Documentation

Not only is the documentation for Angular really vast and detailed, but also easy to read. Each update is carefully explained, making the web development world a little bit easier to navigate. What’s more, the documentation also features code examples, in case you get confused by the explanation.

Reusability

Developing interactive user interfaces with Angular is easier compared to other frameworks. Well, to most of them. But it’s even easier when you can reuse parts of the code in different projects — and that is exactly what you can do with Angular.

MVVM

Angular is an open-source MVVM framework and that means that program logic and interface controls are separated. With the help of the Model-View-ViewModel (also known as the model-view-binder), users can keep the code organized and projects separated. By doing so, they can update, change, and fix the code much faster and easier. In this model, the View is responsible for housing viewable elements and receiving input. ViewModel, on the other hand, binds the View and the Model together. Lastly, the Model contains the program’s logic.

Disadvantages

Difficult to Learn

Angular is not an easy framework to tackle, even for battle-tested developers. The steep learning curve or detailed documentation that requires thorough understanding — it all influences Angular’s difficulty. Moreover, Angular is an opinionated framework, which essentially means that it has its own way of handling things, leaving developers with no other choice than to follow the documentation and rules. Once learned, though, Angular can become quite a rewarding friend.

SEO

Even though this one can be found in advantages as well, Angular is not really friendly towards Search Engine Optimization by default. The search engine crawlers struggle with indexing the website unless it is made on the server-side. If such a condition is met, then the website shouldn’t have problems with being indexed and seen in the SERP.

Heavyweight

Compared to frameworks like React or Vue, the bundle size of Angular projects is often heavier than others, especially with smaller apps. That unfortunately results in lower speed.

Blazor

Blazor

What is it?

Blazor, which conveniently is a short form of browser + razor, is a relatively new Microsoft web framework that was released in 2018. Similar to Angular, Blazor is both open source and free. The framework enables developers to build interactive and reusable web UI in existing web technologies like C# or HTML. When it comes to grammar and syntax, the framework allows developers to use the ones of Razor and C#.

Even though Blazor has accumulated only 9k+ starts on GitHub, it’s still worth considering. In order to understand Blazor, we need to dive deeper into what it really is. Blazor comes with two development possibilities — Server and WebAssembly. The former is a part of .NET Core 3 and is used to run server-side on ASP.NET Core server in ASP.NET Razor format (with SignalR connection used for handling UI updates). The latter, on the other hand, is used for working with modern web browsers and developing interactive client-side SPAs.

Additionally, three more have been announced, though, not yet released.

  • Blazor PWA — designed for developing progressive web apps.
  • Blazor Hybrid — designed for developing hybrid applications.
  • Blazor Native — designed for developing native applications for mobile platforms.

Advantages

Shared Server- and Client-Side Code

An interesting thing about Blazor that many developers may find useful is that the framework allows reusing the code between the server-side and client-side. That means that you can take the code from the back-end and place it in the front-end.

Visual Studio Code

Since Blazor is Microsoft’s framework, it’s supported by the undisputed king of development tools available — Visual Studio Code. The VSC editor allows developers to highlight, debug, refactor the code, among many other useful features.

Dependency Injection

Thanks to dependency injection, Blazor-made applications can use Inversion of Control. It essentially allows providing objects with dependencies. But what’s a dependency? It’s a usable object that can act as a service.

Dependency injection can be divided into classes: injector, client, and service class. It also features different injectors like constructor, method, and property.

JavaScript Interop

JavaScript Interop is a functionality of Blazor WebAssembly that allows handling manipulations of DOM, as well as browser API calls. Thanks to it, an application developed with Blazor can use the .NET methods JavaScript functions. 

Disadvantages

It’s really hard to write down Blazor’s disadvantages as a whole since there are two ways of hosting and they are both different. That’s why we’ve decided to split the disadvantages into two — disadvantages of Blazor Server and Blazor WebAssembly.

Blazor Server

Slower Loading Speed

Due to the application’s need for constant connection with the server, loading speed and latency may be slower. The reason for the slow loading speed is the fact that the browser has to download the .NET library as well as some .dll libraries, which can and probably will result in problems with latency.

No Offline Support

The application requires an active connection to the internet. If it somehow fails, the app will cease to work. Why does that happen? It’s because every piece of the project is hosted on the server-side, hence the connection requirement.

ASP.NET Core

In order for the application to run, it requires the ASP.NET Core server. Without it, there’s no possibility for the app to launch and work properly, so be sure to have it downloaded beforehand!

Blazor WebAssembly

Issues with Low-End Hardware

All PC hardware should be of decent quality and size, as Blazor may face issues while running on lower-end computers.

Restricted by and to a Browser

Blazor is restricted to the capabilities of the browser, so as long as the browser can handle Blazor, it should be fine. However, not all browsers support WebAssembly, so if — by any chance — you’re using Internet Explorer, you may stumble upon an unpleasant surprise.

Weight Matters

The heavier the application made with Blazor WebAssembly, the longer it will take to load.

Initial Load Time

The initial launch load time can take longer than most other web development frameworks.

The Clash: Blazor vs Angular

Now that we have covered the advantages and disadvantages of both Blazor and Angular, let’s focus on the direct comparison.

Results

Both Google’s Angular and Microsoft’s Blazor are open-source web frameworks developed for building modern web apps, but there are key differences between the two. Let’s take a quick look at them. 

A comparison of Blazor and Angular

After taking a look at the table above, it’s really hard to pick a sole winner. Both frameworks definitely have their own pros and cons, but is there something that stands out the most and could influence the decision?

Definitely, the biggest differences between the two are programming language, age, and popularity. Angular is used by large companies all around the world, which makes job hunting a lot easier if you’re the Angular developer. What’s more, Angular is a perfect enterprise solution and it’s mainly used for that purpose. Depending on what you want to achieve, you should pick the appropriate framework. If you want to be sure that the framework of your choice has a huge community in case you need any help, you should pick Angular. On the other hand, if you’d like to reuse the code between the client- and server-side, Blazor allows you to do so. Perhaps you’re looking for a finished product? In this case, Angular is for you.

As you can see, it really depends on the needs. Think carefully about what you want to achieve, analyze the pros and cons of both frameworks, and lastly, pick the most appropriate one. Good luck and see you around next time!

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