Angular is finally working hard be something we can continue to use. I absolutely love Angular! Some of the new features we know they are working on include:
- Standalone Components - This is huge, as it allows you to get rid of more boiler plate modules. This makes it easier to use and closer to functional components.
- Optional Zone.js - While not completely implemented yet, this will allow smaller packages, and better direct control of rendering.
- OnPush Change Detection - This is already implemented, and gives you direct control of DOM updates. However, you will have to handle them yourself. This is a good thing.
- Signals - While already implemented, this gives you exact control of what state you want to update in the DOM. Angular is currently building ways to makes this integration seamless with RXJS.
These are just some of the features, experimental features, and partially implemented features Angular is currently working on. You can view the Roadmap, although it hasn't been updated this year. It is best to follow the Releases and their Twitter.
This is wonderful, and the Angular team has been working extremely hard as they continue to innovate.
The best contribution to Angular in the last year has invariably been the creation of AnalogJS. But why? You can now do things like File Based Routing, use Vite for faster compilation (and yes, ENV variable support out-of-the-box!), and SSR Support.
It doesn't yet support server only routes, form actions, or automatic handling of complex hydration items like transferState, but it is an incredible meta framework. I suspect Brandon will be looking into some of these things.
But Why is Angular Universal the Problem?
Let's put it this way. React is Dead. React is held up by the many innovations from the NextJS team at Vercel. The slowest two Frameworks by far are React and Angular, but no one talks about this. Everyone just assumes React is badass because it is the most popular. There are not a lot of tests these days, but I suspect in larger apps, Angular is way faster than React. Angular has everything built-in, and most tests seem to be basic todo apps. React has to install many external libraries just to function (because it is a library of course).
No, the reason Angular is supposedly dying (trendy influencers are ignorant that it is still the second most popular and mature framework) is because it is not on the SSR Train.
Sure, other Frameworks are smaller, faster, and have incredible new innovations, but that is not why they are popular. They all handle the basics extremely well making the DX faster. Solid Start, Qwik City, NextJS / Remix, SvelteKit, NuxtJS. Literally all of them except Angular Universal.
What Angular Universal Needs...
The Angular Core is already incredibly strong, has mature external packages, and has a great team backed by Google...
Angular Universal is still 10 years behind, and not even on the serverless train!
Here are the basic things it needs:
- File Based Routing - better DX experience
- ENV Variable Support - you seriously can't do this currently in Angular without a hack or adding webpack
- Automatic TransferState - TransferState is way too complicated and should be automatic (like all other frameworks) so that the Developer doesn't have to think about it. This would work with shared server / browser components.
- Server Only Routes / Endpoints - Creating a route manually is inefficient, and should be easy. I should also be able to import components into the server.
- More deploy options - you can deploy to Firebase Functions or Cloud Run, but there should be options (or adapters) for Vercel, Netlify, Cloudflare, and more...
- Code Splitting Components - this would be necessary to deploy to Edge servers and other serverless environments, as each component would be in its own serverless function (how every other framwork works)
- Type-Safe Form Actions - this gets rid of extraneous endpoints, and would allow you to submit your forms to the server to update your pages... this should work like TRPC with type safety, and be seamless from the server to the browser. It would also have to handle refreshing the page
This is where Angular should focus its time. Without heading in the SSR first direction, I do believe Angular will die one day for web applications.
Do you agree?
Again, all other popular frameworks have meta-frameworks with these options, or a version of them.
See some more articles and things I'm building on code.build.
Top comments (22)
Thanks for the mention Jonathan! Some of these items are definitely already on my radar also, the two main being Automatic TransferState and Server-Only routes.
Analog already supports Netlify, Vercel, Edgio, and others by way of using Nitro as its server engine.
Good to know! I think all Angular devs appreciate your work! Excited to see the future!
@brandontroberts Most welcome of Automatic TransferState and Server-Only routes in new angular world.
Thanks for sharing this article, haven't heard of analogjs.org/ yet. Nice!
@jdgamble555 Thank you for sharing this useful things related to angular.
React is not dead. And who say it is slow if it can run super complicated UI smoothly such as this
Compared to Solid, Svelte, Vue, Qwik and even Preact, React is very slow. Angular and React are on a different level. My point about React being dead was that NextJS is a big reason it is as popular as it is.
Oh, you mean "not moving" when you say dead. Yeah, I agree it doesn't change much, but it doesn't bother me, since not changing means stable and mature. Who need to change when you are already good enough. Like "pencils" are dead, because they stay the same since forever... yeah.
Anyway, I don't even use Next, so I don't think Next is what keeping React alive. Have built many complicated React systems with the bare minimum (React 6) and still eager to build more with it.
Could be more convincing if you can give examples of how those "super fast" libs can build complex apps comparing to React... or if they can build at all (other than todo list).
Anyway, it's great if you can checkout the Mac OS that I built using React, it's packed with features and silky smooth. Can't complain
My article is NOT about React, although I'm glad it works for you. Not sure how to respond to your assumption that React is the only library that can build more than a todo app. Solid and Qwik are new, but many have used them for complex production. The features are insane. Svelte is mature now, and Vue is nearly as old as React and Angular. Preact can support most React packages, and Qwik and Solid can too.
People don't spend years developing Frameworks, especially meta frameworks with SSR, to build just todo apps. These frameworks have more features than Angular for SSR, and arguably simpler.
All frameworks have something great to offer, and they learn and build off each other. Angular is just slow on the SSR front. I'm hoping that changes.
Most React people assume React is the only thing in existence. It's the equivalent of iOS users who think iPhone is the only smart phone there is. A good mix of cult and ignorance
Ok, I take it as React is NOT dead.
Anyway, I just looked at both Solid and Qwik, quite nice. Basically I only care if a lib use Virtual DOM or not. I don't think Solid have a future, just like Angular
And why you bring up Preact? It's basically React. Geez
Virtual DOM? Really?
Yes. Virtual DOM. What is wrong. I think the naming is stupid but it is the defining feature of React and the like (Vue, Preact or Qwik). What is the problem here?
Yeah, except that I have almost 20 years of experience and have gone through many things before settling with React (Angular, JQuery, PrototypeJS, Java Swing, .NET, ... ). Call me ignorant, I don't care, have seen so many flashy new techs before. Build something awesome with it (like my MacOS), then we talk
Not talking about you, about generic React beginners. It is a framework that most beginners start with, and get stuck with.
For ENV variables, you could try
Thanks, also wrote this arricle - dev.to/jdgamble555/angular-univers...
@ngx-envyour approach seems way overcomplicated.
True, but the
ngx-envpackage adds more dependencies and extra overhead. There are tradeoffs. Obviously best option would be if Angular had this built-in.
Am I the only one who doesn't like file-based routing?
Of course, it's not a silver bullet but from my experience and observation it is a good architecture choice for 90% of projects (from small to big)
I think first of all author tries to say that we need options to choose from in our Angular world. Not that file based routing is always better than the "classic" way