In this online world, customer care is playing a major role in the success of a company. Users are quite satisfied when they converse with the executives through calls. This has forced companies to add phone numbers to their apps for their customers to contact them easily. But, dialing those numbers from the app into the default phone app makes it quite cumbersome. So, in order to improve the user experience, Flutter has come up with a feature where the user can call the other, just in a click. This can be achieved by using the “url_launcher” plugin.
Calls in Flutter
In Flutter, everything is a widget and in the same way, Flutter also uses a lot of plugins or dependencies in order to make the app work faster and easier. In this case, the “url_launcher” plugin can be used to make a call in a mobile application. Steps for adding the plugin to the Flutter app is as follows:
1. Open “pubspec.yaml” file from the project folder.
2. In the pubspec.yaml file, type “url_launcher:” under dependencies.
After that, the code looks like this:
3. Now click “Pub Get” button in the top of the application (Android Studio).
4. The “Process finished with exit code 0“ in the console shows that the dependency is been added successfully.
5. Now import the plugin or package by adding the “import ‘package:url_launcher/url_launcher.dart’;” code to the top of the “main.dart” file.
Now, let’s create a function that can be called, whenever the user clicks a button, that’s linked to a phone number, to make a call.
- The function is named here as “_makingPhoneCall” and the function is declared as “async”, so that it returns a promise.
- The “url” variable is assigned with the required phone number, as a string. The “tel:” syntax here before the phone number, makes Flutter realize that a following number is a phone number which has to be opened in the default Phone App. It is declared as a “const”, so that the variable is not changed at any circumstance.
- If there is a possibility to launch the URL, only then the url is launched by calling the launch() function with url variable as an attribute.
- Else, it will throw/print a text with the url value, as an error message.
Calling the function:
The above function can be called when needed inside the program, by calling the name of the functions as it is. The example is as follows:
- This creates a raised button having the text “Call” on it.
- For the onPressed attribute, we are calling “_makingPhoneCall” so that, when the button is pressed, the default Phone app is opened and the phone number in the url variable is dialed automatically, making it easier for the user.
Complete Source Code: