Is Blazor the Future of Web Development?

Katie Mikova / Thursday, August 24, 2023

The concept of running C# code in the browser isn’t entirely new. Not even when Microsoft first created and introduced Blazor. The tech giant had previously explored similar ideas with multiple other frameworks, like Silverlight or MVC that use C#. Nevertheless, what particularly distinguishes Blazor Client from Silverlight and MVC is that it leverages WebAssembly as the runtime environment, enabling C# to run directly in the browser without plugins or any dependencies.

So, where is Blazor heading? And how is it changing the web development landscape? Ultimately, is Blazor the future?

I will take a deep dive into these questions and will also explore other key factors like:

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What Are Some of the Current Blazor Limitations?

While Blazor may seem like the future for C# developers, it does have certain limitations they should be aware of. They include:

  • Larger file size and a significant amount of code to be downloaded to the client's browser.
  • Slow initial load times, particularly for larger applications or users with slower internet connections.
  • Older browsers may have limited or no support.
  • The debugging experience for Blazor applications is not as mature as that of JavaScript applications and it has fewer functionalities.
  • The ecosystem and availability of third-party libraries for Blazor are limited. Still though, it is evolving.
  • Blazor Server requires a constant connection to the server.
  • It’s not particularly well suited to large, more complex apps where performance is everything.

What Makes Blazor Unique & Is Blazor the Future of Web Development?

Before Blazor, single-page applications and client-side functionalities were typically implemented using JavaScript - either through pure JavaScript coding or by utilizing JavaScript frameworks like Angular or React. But then WebAssembly happened. Blazor introduced a novel concept in web development by empowering Blazor developers to build interactive UI with their C# and .NET skills, eliminating the need to rely solely on the ever so complex JavaScript.

Blazor WebAssembly

At its core, Blazor uses JavaScript interop so it can do anything JavaScript can. Using it, teams can build very complex applications and achieve good performance characteristics and great UX across all devices. With both the server-side and client-side UI logic in place.

Is it the future for C# developers, then? Yes. Will it replace Angular or React entirely? No. 

Envisioning the Blazor Future

Here are several ways in which this framework works toward becoming the future of web development:

Blazor Covers All the Needs for a Spa Application

  • Runs in a memory-safe sandboxed environment

This ensures several critical advantages like great performance that enables it to run at a speed close to native apps, isolation, preventing memory-related vulnerabilities like buffer overflows, and others.

  • Supports all the necessary SPA features

This includes component-based architecture, components, routing, event handling, dependency injection – all required for a modern-day development experience.

  • Shorter development time

With IntelliSense feature that simplifies the coding process by providing code suggestions, available components, autocompletion, and other code-related hints to Blazor developers.

  • Supported by all browsers

Apart from the ability to work on Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Opera, Safari, Blazor can run on older (non-WebAssembly) browsers via asm.js.

Differences From Other Frameworks

  • Server-side & client-side code sharing

With this unified programming model, developers can leverage their existing knowledge in C# and .NET across the entire application stack. Which benefits them even more as it promotes the reuse of code.

  • Designed to be platform-independent

Blazor apps can be easily deployed on machines without .NET, but as static files. This allows Blazor developers to build web applications that run on different platforms and devices. Whether it's desktop, mobile, or IoT devices, the flexibility that comes with Blazor offers possibilities for building apps targeting multiple environments with minimal code changes.

  • Ability to choose the hosting model

There’s a full-stack development available for Blazor developers because the framework supports client-side and server-side hosting models. With client-side hosting, the entire Blazor app is executed in the browser, while server-side hosting runs the UI logic on the server and sends UI updates to the client.

Other reasons that make Blazor such a great technology with increasing potential:

  • Blazor United that combines all Blazor technologies within the .NET ecosystem to streamline the development of client-side and server-side web apps.
  • Improving WASM performance
  • Full debugging support on the server-side and debugging with some limitations on the client-side
  • Data binding with the HTML DOM (limited two-way binding)
  • Server and client-side models
  • Server-side rendering (aka pre-rendering) for higher performance
  • Ahead of time compilation
  • Scoped styles
  • WebSocket connections
  • Works offline (client-side WebAssembly only)
  • Works in all modern web browsers including mobile browsers
  • Blazor code has the same security sandbox as JavaScript
  • Use JavaScript interop to call JavaScript frameworks and libraries
  • Open source

How Does Infragistics Deliver a Reliable Blazor Product

In the last 2 years, our customers have become more and more interested in Blazor as a potential product they can use in their toolset. Even customers that have been using other products like WPF or React, are now considering Blazor. The number of people who sign up for our Blazor-focused webinars are also increasing, with more and more people from all over the world attending.

That’s why the team is working relentlessly to get our Blazor product to meet all the needs of our customers. Whether this involves adding new components on a continuous release cycle or updating our grids with new features, it’s a constant process that the team doesn’t spare any effort on.

The goal is to help developers build Blazor apps faster with C# components. We invest resources in building solid products that our customers want. Continuously improving our Ignite UI library for Blazor, we packed 35+ native Blazor components with 60+ high-performance charts designed for any app scenario, the fastest Blazor grid on the market, Blazor Dock Manager, and more. Also available are base Bootstrap, Fluent and Material themes. Plus, a full support for Blazor Server, Blazor WebAssembly, and .NET 7.

And because our commitment doesn’t end here, we always analyze industry trends and collect customer feedback so we can deliver better development experiences by:

  • Bringing feature enhancements and new capabilities, ensuring Ignite UI for Blazor remains relevant and meets the evolving needs of the Blazor development community.
  • Releasing updates regularly.
  • Investing in optimizing the performance of Ignite UI for Blazor. This involves analyzing and fine-tuning the underlying code to ensure efficient rendering, smooth interactions, and minimized resource consumption.
  • Maintaining comprehensive Blazor documentation, API references, tutorials, and samples to guide developers in utilizing the Ignite UI for Blazor library more effectively.
  • Ensuring our Blazor UI library remains compatible with the latest versions of the framework and adapting it in a way that leverages all the new functionalities and optimizations.
  • Offering support, technical advice, and exchange of ideas on different channels – GitHub, Discord, etc.

In Conclusion…

JavaScript keeps dominating a large development community that is well-versed in its syntax, libraries, and frameworks. That’s for sure. But Blazor has emerged as an alternative framework for .NET web development and programmers using C#. Promising to make app development processes for them faster, easier, and more efficient, it does cater to their needs and allows them to leverage existing technical skills at the same time.

The performance of Blazor applications executed in the browser is also improving significantly. Add the fact that as .NET evolves, Blazor might benefit from enhancements and features introduced in newer versions since it is closely tied to this ecosystem. With WebAssembly, which holds such a great potential, the Blazor future seems bright - with continuous growth and adoption, making it a viable choice for performance-critical apps in the future.

Ignite UI Blazor