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Why It’s a High Time to Migrate from AngularJS to Angular

  • Rating — 4.9 (20 voices)
  • by Ivanna Denys
  • Updated on May 22, 2019
  • Read —
    6-7 minutes

For the last few years, the migration from AngularJS to the newer versions of Angular has been one of the hottest topics in the business and tech communities. In general, most people understand that the newer the better because it at least considers the modern-day standards. However, there are still many concerns about upgrading applications to Angular 2+ among CTOs and business owners. Is it just a market trend or indeed beneficial? How much time will it take? Will it require significant investments? etc.

We are a business too and we know that such concerns are inevitable since every business decision should be well-informed and rational. At the same time, as professional developers, we can see all the benefits the migration form AngularJS to Angular 2+ may bring to a company.

In this article, we will explain how exactly AngularJS differs from other versions of Angular and outline the main advantages of the Angular latest versions. On top of that, we’ll provide you with some recommendations on upgrading applications to Angular 2+.

  1. Difference between AngularJS and Angular
  2. Advantages of Angular over AngularJS
  3. How to do the migration right

 

Difference between AngularJS and Angular

As we see from the practice, not everyone knows where all the hustle comes from. So let’s start with brief background information so you can take the bird’s eye view on a subject.

AngularJS

AngularJS is a JavaScript framework that is used for building the front end of web applications. It was created by Google in 2009 but the initial release took place only three years later, in 2012. AngularJS is also sometimes referred to as Angular 1.x or Angular.js and it covers all versions of the framework which appeared before Angular 2.

Nowadays, AngularJS is one of the most popular open-source web development technologies worldwide. According to Built With, more than 3 million websites are powered by Angular 1.x. And it’s no wonder because this framework is widely used by both large enterprises and small or medium-sized businesses.

Why is it so? Well, AngularJS allows for the fast creation of dynamic interfaces. This is because the main idea behind this framework was to use declarative programming for building front-end of web applications. In addition, it uses HTML as a template language, meaning that AngularJS supports HTML attributes, extend them with directives, and bind data to HTML with expressions. As a result, it creates a readable and highly expressive environment that is quick to develop.

Angular

Angular (or Angular 2+) refers to Angular 2 and all subsequent versions. All of them are the TypeScript-based platforms for web app development. Like AngularJS, Angular was created and is still maintained by Google. The initial release took place in September 2016 and it is considered to be the evolution of AngularJS.

You may wonder why the difference between the initial version of the framework and versions 2 and up is so essential. The main reason why AngularJS required significant improvements lies in the necessity to enhance the performance of web applications. The code was rewritten from scratch so the two technologies have very little in common.

AngularJS vs Angular comparison

AngularJS vs Angular

Advantages of Angular over AngularJS

The above table contains a lot of technical information and the benefits of Angular 2+ might be not that straightforward. So let’s take a closer look at how the migration from AngularJS to Angular 2+ will enhance your application.

Boost in performanceBoost in performance

In general, AngularJS is a good framework since it indeed reduced the development time. However, with AngularJS, when there is a lot of processing on the client side, the page load can take pretty much time. The main reason is that this framework was created mainly for web designers and, thus, it is not that good at meeting programmers’ requirements. Reportedly, Angular offers a five-time higher speed than AngularJS and that is quite a considerable improvement.

Mobile-driven approachMobile-driven approach

Angular allows developers to build lightweight applications that may be downloaded faster. One of the main reasons is that Angular uses so-called lazy scripting. This means that it loads particular modules only when they are needed. On top of that, some packages (for example, animations) were removed from the main Angular core. This enabled lighter and faster performance.

MaintainabilityMaintainability

As mentioned, Angular has a component-based architecture. Such a system is much more beneficial than the one used in the initial version, i.e. MVC. In short, a component is a separate piece of a user interface that covers one small feature. For instance, chats and friend lists are different components within the Facebook UI.

Although components co-exist within one space, they are independent of each other, have their own methods, structures, and APIs. This means that it’s easier for programmers (and most likely cheaper for companies) to update applications by swapping specific components in and out.

In addition, components are reusable. Hence, programmers can reduce the time needed to extend an application by reusing the existing components in the further development cycles.

Code optimizationCode optimization

Unlike AngularJS that uses JavaScript, Angular 2x is based on a TypeScript language. The latter is a superset of ECMAScript 6 (ES6) and it has an advanced type-checking feature. This means that most mistakes can be noticed before transpiling. Hence, developers can build large applications and avoid compile-time errors.

Reduced development timeReduced development time and costs

We have already mentioned that programmers can build a web application faster with Angular. But we think it’s worth discussing this benefit in greater detail as well so you can capture all important aspects. AngularJS doesn’t have a CLI and only third-party tools are available. At the same time, the later versions of Angular have an official CLI as well as other tools such as text editors, IDEs, etc. Thanks to them, developers can build an application from the ground up faster and easier.

As a rule, a reduced development time also means fewer costs since programmers usually charge on per hour basis for their work. On top of that, maintenance of an application that is based on Angular will likely be cheaper because there are much more software engineers specializing in this technology and in general their rates are lower.

Better supportBetter support

Angular is an up-to-date technology that is being constantly upgraded. According to Angular creators, they are going to release a new enhanced version of Angular every six months. This will allow you to keep up with the latest tech advancement so your applications will never get obsolete.

How to do the migration right

Although the migration process might be associated with some fundamental changes, it’s not as daunting as it may seem to many CTOs and business owners. Here are some tips that will help you transit painlessly.

Make a transition to TypeScript beforehandMake a transition to TypeScript beforehand

Sooner or later, you’ll have to do this either way. We recommend you to bring in TypeScript compiler before you commence the migration process. Review carefully your existing code, make some annotations, etc. Yes, it might take a while, but the results will be more efficient.

Migrate smoothlyMigrate smoothly

A lot of people are hesitant to upgrade applications to the newer versions of Angular because, as they think, it will pause the use of such applications for a significant period of time. But that’s not true. You can actually migrate gradually since both frameworks may co-exist within one app.

Follow Angular guideFollow Angular guide

Angular published guidelines with best practices on upgrading to the later versions of the framework. Following them will make this task easier for you. In addition, Angular has a wide and active community so you can always find support from people who have experience in the successful migration.

Conclusion

The migration from AngularJS to Angular is indeed a big step that requires much effort. However, there must be no doubts about whether you should do it or not. First of all, Angular 2x is advantageous in many ways. It will allow your application to perform better and work faster,  it’ll make your solutions easier to scale and maintain, and, finally, it’ll definitely pay off in the end. And, secondly, the newer versions of Angular won’t let you systems become outdated or irrelevant.

Looking for developers to support your migration from AngularJS to Angular?

Ivanna is a Content Marketing Manager of GBKSOFT passionate about tech advancements, marketing, and startups. Her dream is to make the virtual world a better place with the help of a written word.


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