It's High Time to React.js: Ten Reasons to Give It a Try
Front-end ecosystem is constantly evolving and changing on a day-to-day basis. Some tools become “bestsellers” in terms of web app development, revolutionizing the workflow, while others become a dead end.
Popularity of React library worldwide
Let’s go with the 10 reasons to use React js:
It lessens the whole process of writing components
While JSX is often a matter of dispute, it can prove useful in building high-volume apps or custom components, excluding typos in large tree structures, and make it easier to convert from HTML mockups to ReactElement trees.
Reusable components to boost productivity
Ability to create your own elements is among the best features of React js. You can start with finest components (checkbox, button, etc.), then move to wrapper components comprised of these tiny elements and move forward until the main, root component. All the components have their internal logic, what makes it easier to manipulate and define them. Such approach ensures consistent app look and facilitates codebase maintenance and growth.
Faster rendering with Virtual DOM
Considering possible performance issues and bottlenecks is an important aspect of web app development. Though modern JS engines are quite efficient in handling complex apps, DOM updating is a common bottleneck of web performance. This is where virtual DOM comes in handy.
First view changes are applied to the virtual DOM and then, using diff algorithm, the minimal scope of necessary DOM operations is calculated. Finally, the DOM tree is updated accordingly, ensuring minimum time consumed.
It is SEO friendly
Though some improvements have taken place at Google, we shouldn’t forget about other search engine platforms, like Yahoo, Bing or Baidu. Moreover, we need to take into account various microformat web use-cases, like Open Graph, Twitter Cards, etc., because Facebook, Slack or Twitter won’t execute your JS and mainly depend on SSR.
Great developer tools right out of the box
Reactjs was definitely invented with software engineers in mind, that’s why its toolset is another significant selling point. React Developer Tools is a Chrome dev extension for observing reactive component hierarchies and inspecting component’s current state and props.
Short learning curve
This is one of the major reasons why use React js. It doesn’t impose any patterns, templates, complex internals or architecture like MVVM or MVC. It is a view layer that allows JS developer to design an app the way he sees it. The only thing you need to do is to get familiar with component’s states, props, and life cycles.
React Native for mobile app development
Initially, React library was created for internal use and later shared with the entire world. Currently, it is supported by Facebook and Instagram engineering teams, plus external experts. Users can ask their questions on Stack Overflow, Discussion forum, Reactiflux Chart, Freenode IRC, GitHub, social media platforms and many others.
It is used by both Fortune 500 companies and innovative startups
Thousands of companies worldwide have chosen it for their apps, sites and internal projects. Still doubt about what is React js good for? – Check out some inspiring samples of hot solutions: companies built mobile apps with React Native: Airbnb, Walmart Labs, Tesla, Tencent QQ (with more than 829 million active accounts), Baidu Mobile (with more than 600 million users), Bloomberg, li.st, Gyroscope, Delivery.com, JD.com, GoDaddy and many others. Sites using React: BBC, Netflix, Dropbox, Coursera, IMDb, PayPal, Dailymotion, Chrysler, American Express, Intuit, Khan Academy, Lyft, Atlassian, New York Times, Reddit and dozens of others.
Related article: ReactJS vs Angular Comparison: Which is Better?
When to use React JS? And when to opt for alternatives?
React is definitely worthy of your attention, especially if you are working on single page application and wish to make it fast, responsive and user-friendly. However, this JS library can be hardly called a “panacea for all woes”.
React setup can take more time, comparing to Vue.js for example, though adding new features is relatively easy. If you are not sure about the future of your project, then you need to think twice about creating a React app. The migration process from Reactjs can become rather tough and time-consuming. If you are a fan of TypeScript or templates, you’d better go with Angular or Vue.
Considering React js pros and cons, it can be easily summed up in three words: non-risky, responsive and advanced. The main idea behind this particular library is: “to build large-scale applications with data that changes repeatedly over time” and it tackles the challenge well. It provides developers with the capability of working with a virtual browser (DOM) that is much faster and user-friendly, than the real one. Apart from that, it offers the easier creation of interactive UIs, JSX support, component-based structure and much more. The combination of the above-mentioned factors makes it a reasonable choice for both startups and enterprises.