Micro frontends are a new approach to front-end development that allows for creation of modular, independent front-end applications that can be combined into a cohesive whole. This approach has gained popularity in recent years due to the increasing complexity of modern web applications and the need for teams to work more efficiently and flexibly.
So, what exactly are micro frontends, and how do they work? A micro frontend is a self-contained, independent front-end application that can be developed and deployed separately from the rest of the application. This means that different teams can work on different micro frontends, using various technologies and frameworks, without interfering with each other.
Once these micro frontends are developed, they can be combined to form a more extensive, more complex application. This is done using a shell application that acts as the container for the micro frontends. The shell application provides the overall structure and navigation of the application, while the micro frontends provide specific functionality.
Micro Frontend Advantages
Micro frontends offer several advantages over traditional monolithic front-end development. Some of the key benefits of using micro frontends include:
- Independent development: One of the most significant advantages of micro frontends is that they allow for the independent development of different parts of an application. Different teams can work on different micro frontends, using various technologies and frameworks, without interfering with each other. This can lead to faster development cycles, as well as more agility and flexibility in responding to changes and updates.
- Flexible technology choices: With micro frontends, teams can use different frameworks, libraries, and tools without worrying about compatibility or interference. This can be especially helpful for larger organizations with multiple teams working on different projects. It also allows teams to choose the best technology for their particular micro frontend without being constrained by the technology choices of other parts of the application.
- Improved scalability: Micro frontends can help to improve the scalability of an application. As the application grows in complexity, additional micro frontends can be added to the application without affecting other parts of the application. This makes it easier to scale an application without re-architecting the entire frontend.
- Better maintainability: Micro frontends can also improve the maintainability of an application. Since each micro frontend is a self-contained module, it is easier to test and maintain that specific part of the application. It also makes it easier to update or replace a particular micro frontend without affecting the rest of the application.
- Consistency: With careful planning and coordination, micro frontends can be developed in a way that ensures consistency and coherence across the different micro frontends. This means that the overall user experience is consistent and cohesive, even though different parts of the application are developed independently.
How to develop and deploy micro frontends?
Several frameworks and platforms can be used to develop and deploy micro frontends. Some of the most popular options include:
- Piral: Piral (https://piral.io/) is a platform for building micro frontends that provides a range of features for managing and deploying micro frontends, including a micro frontend registry and support for different module types.
- OpenComponents: OpenComponents (https://opencomponents.github.io/) is an open-source framework for building micro frontends that provides a range of features for managing the lifecycle of micro frontends, as well as handling cross-cutting concerns like routing and state management.
- Luigi: Luigi (https://luigi-project.io/) is a micro frontend framework developed by SAP that provides a range of features for building and deploying micro frontends, as well as a set of reusable UI components.
Overall, micro frontends offer a more flexible and scalable approach to front-end development, allowing teams to work more independently and efficiently while maintaining compatibility and consistency across the application.