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Bootstrap vs Material UI

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Should you prefer Bootstrap or Material UI for web development? This is a long-standing question for frontend developers and especially those who have just started to dig into frontend frameworks. There are a lot of debate and arguments on these two but no one has a definite answer. So, we will try to make a clear distinction about which one you should use.

Bootstrap is a powerful, free, open-source CSS framework created by Twitter as their internal framework to make developer’s life easier by implementing predefined classes for building responsive websites and web applications. Since Twitter made it open-source in 2011, Bootstrap is the most popular and most used CSS framework with a large community. Many big companies like Airbnb, Apple Music, Dropbox, Coursera, and so on.

The Material UI is in 2017, which mainly works on Facebook’s React framework and Google’s Material Design guidelines. It provides an exhausting framework for creating websites and applications with high interactive and mobile-first UI with responsive designs. Material Design and material UI are strongly connected with each other and material UI is just a component library without material design. Material Design is used by Google in all of its products while the newly trending Material UI is currently used by NASA, Unity, Amazon, JPMorgan and the list is going to increase in upcoming years.     


Material UI

It is an HTML, CSS & JS framework to make responsive websites that are mobile-friendly and easy to create.

Material UI is a highly interactive & customizable framework based on React UI and Material Design.

Developed by Twitter, initially named Twitter Blueprint.

Developed by a small team of passionate developers by referring to Google’s material design.

Currently, an open-source project maintained by Mark Otto, Jacob Thornton, and a small group of core developers, as well as a large community of contributors

Maintained by founding team and group of core contributors as well as the material community.

High speed of development because of reusable code

Speed of development is lesser than compared to bootstrap but can be increased by extensive use of reusable components and templates.

12-column grid system for responsive design

12-column grid system, same as bootstrap

Bootstrap’s information layout provides a clear and consistent UI for all platforms.

Also, it a mobile-first and supports all platforms, but excess use of customizations, transitions, and animations might affect accessibility on some platforms.

Unnecessary JS, jQuery scripts, and large class definitions might make that application heavy if appropriate optimizations & refactoring are not performed.

It works on React JS components which can be independent of each other. It doesn’t require any library to work & thus we can only use what we need.

Bootstrap is very consistent and provides a simple, clear interface that, is easy to learn. And comparatively less customizable than Material UI.

Material UI is highly customizable with which designers can create tons of designs. But it may produce inconsistency among components.

Can we use both of them?

Is it possible to take advantage of both? To enjoy a stylish responsive design without spending too much time adapting the app for various platforms?

Yes, material design makes this possible with Bootstrap (also known as mdbootstrap). It is a set of libraries built on Bootstrap and follows other well-known frameworks and content design guidelines such as Vue, Angular, React. Allows those combo developers to use Bootstrap syntax that is familiar to everyone, so there will be fewer issues when developing. You can learn about mdbootstrap here.

Which should you choose for your next development project?

As you can imagine, the answer to this question depends only on what project you are working on and what goals you are striving to achieve. If you aim to create a simple yet professional and highly responsive website in less time, Bootstrap should be the design tool for you.

If you want a bit of sophistication combined with inventive and natural design with vibrant colors, visual props, and subtle animations, then think about material design.

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Last Updated : 24 May, 2021
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