Are you looking for the best front-end frameworks for your next web development project? We have got you covered! Here you will find the best front-end HTML5 frameworks for effective web UI development.
Starting with HTML5
For web developers, starting with HTML5 has never been easier; plenty of tutorials, plenty of source code to play with on GitHub, majority of new desktop and mobile apps are being built with HTML5, there are books and online courses everywhere, but most importantly we have a ton of remarkable HTML5 frameworks to play with, to create apps and platforms with. The following HTML5 frameworks you will learn more about have all been nominated to be amongst the most popular by the community of developers themselves. Rest assured that every one of these frameworks has at least a dozen big businesses behind it. Let us know about your favorites, perhaps you are building an HTML5 framework. If so, this is a good place to get some exposure.
Bootstrap is a household name for every single breathing front-end developer. Out of the top 100,000 websites on the planet, more than 30%+ rely on Bootstrap as their foundation. Such number speaks volumes of the framework’s usability, user-friendliness, and flexibility. Developed by Twitter, Bootstrap gives developers access to tools to build modern and feature-rich web pages. You can do this without building components and grid styles all by yourself. It all comes pre-packaged in the framework itself.
Recently the team over at Bootstrap announced the release of Bootstrap V5, further bringing forth web development modernization and optimization. Free online courses allow anyone to learn more about Bootstrap at their own pace. To get started with Bootstrap was never difficult, which might also be one of the reasons why so many developers and designers have opted to use Bootstrap as their default HTML5 development framework.
Foundation has quickly evolved from another contender for a slot in the most popular framework lists, to becoming one of the most modern and reliable web development frameworks. It stands out with its ability to deliver high-quality performance for modern devices, and custom application requirements. Foundation’s core is built around a range of web development frameworks that can be used to create websites, email templates, as well as a separate framework for building complex, dynamic and responsive apps that will feel authentic thanks to integration with Angular’s base.
The framework recently upgraded to a V6 and tailored together some amazing functions that you won’t be finding on any other HTML5 framework anytime soon, OnePoint has covered the latest feature additions in the new release.
The real reason behind the success of Foundation is perhaps because an actual company manages it — ZURB; which has ensured continuous development and research in the field of responsive web design and how websites should be built to better reflect design qualities and features. Foundation’s core strategy is to let developers focus on building mobile-first sites that can then be customized and converted into apps that could be served on larger devices, such as desktop. Such a process ensures that the design choices are always created with straightforward functionality in mind.
Zebkit is the enhanced and improved version of the Zebra project. Before we continue, Zebkit is not backward compatible with Zebra due to all the changes. In short, Zebkit combines the best practices from the previous version and mixes in tons of new stuff to make it even better. It equips you with all sorts of UI components that work on well-liked devices and work extremely well for single-page applications. Also, all of Zebkit’s elements support touch sensitivity. Some improvements include black mode, reorganized JS code, a big change in components API and normalized key event for all platforms and browsers.
Onsen UI has been a godsend for tens of thousands of Cordova and PhoneGap developers, as this open-source HTML5-based hybrid mobile app development framework (equipped with Material Design, and Flat UI components) brings about elements-based UI components to bring your mobile apps into aliveness natively. Because Onsen has been built with the help of Web Components, developers can easily adapt to their already existing knowledge of HTML syntax to begin developing apps on the fly.
Onsen developers understand the importance of agnostic development and how crucial it can be to the success of an application. Because of this, you can easily integrate Onsen to work with any other front-end web development framework out there. Angular developers can tap into a specifically built library just for Angular to take advantage of the custom tags that Onsen framework provides.
Onsen has captured anyone who’s attention can also explore the new Onsen UI BETA page that talks more about the new release of the framework and what to expect; happy to announce that they’re keeping with the agnostic development tradition, so things are looking up for those who want to continue using Onsen in their app projects.
Anyone with the ability to build/design a website from scratch will use Ionic. You can use Ionic to create stunning mobile apps from the day they start using the framework. The fact of the matter is that learning the ropes of this framework isn’t all-that-hard process. Guys at Thinkster have provided a very uncomplicated tutorial on how to get started with Ionic, and AirPair has also talked about building production-ready apps with Ionic.
In today’s reality, more than 2+ million websites and mobile apps (including a few desktop) have been built thanks to Ionic’s freely available codebase, community, and documentation that makes the development environment easy and accessible for both beginners and truly experienced developers.
Semantic is a HTML5 framework that utilizes a range of UI components to help you build fast and beautiful websites. You can use the traditional code syntax you would usually use in non-framework environment. You can use it to build both simple (and truly complex) layouts. Also, you can use it for theming an existing layout to reflect your design preferences and choices better. Frameworks like Meteor embrace the beauty that Semantic offers to UI development.
SproutCore’s one of the oldest web frameworks on our list. It has managed to maintain its momentum even after such a long time. Even though the whole development process seems to have been slowed down in the last couple of years, the framework seems to be doing great despite the raise of other competitors. SproutCore aims to provide developers with an easy to use framework. You are in charge of how code functions across all of your project’s requirements. This provides support for platforms like AppCache or Cordova.
There’s no question as to how important it is for developers to find the kind of framework that provides the right tools and list of features for building mobile and web apps on the go, and Framework 7 is one such framework that offers developers to build their apps with the feel and look of two popular mobile operating systems — Android and iOS. Framework 7 offers wireframing and prototyping functionality to help you create prototypes for your clients. It’s an app development framework and it can do this actions in just a few short blinks of an eye.
jQuery Mobile is a web application development framework that focuses on helping developers create a single responsive web application. This creation will certainly work on mobile devices, tablets, and desktop computers without extra fuss. Amongst the most notable features, you will find in the jQuery Mobile repertoire are touch-friendly form elements, sleek UI widgets for instant development progress, responsive design tools and techniques, an in-built navigation system based on AJAX, as well as a plugin called ThemeRoller that will let you adjust as well as build your themes in the way that you want them to look and feel. Click here to learn more about the process of using ThemeRoller.
Suppose you haven’t seen much of jQuery Mobile before. In that case, we recommend taking a closer look at this sample tutorial from Miamicoder, in which Jorge Ramon goes in-depth about a straightforward user-registration system using the jQuery Mobile framework. It’s a great starting point for understanding the syntax and its uses in the real world. Perhaps, after taking a closer look, you will be hooked on how the framework operates.
PhoneGap and Cordova are well-known names in the hybrid mobile app developer community. And Monaca’s job is to help you bring both together in a simple cloud-based environment that gives you tools and features to optimize your overall development experience. Monaca is fully agnostic, as we learned, which means that you can easily integrate Monaca in your already existing development workflow and build on top of your existing Cordova environment.
The three main features of Monaca, as advertised by the developers themselves, are the ability to develop in the cloud, to be able to use all features (design, development for front-end and back-end, testing, debugging, building) either together as a full-fledged app development platform, or to use them separately whenever necessary. The third is the ability, as mentioned, to combine Monaca with any of your favorite frameworks out there, giving you the power of the cloud over all of your development needs.
Documentation is built to support quick introduction guides, questions, lots of examples, detailed manuals, and API tutorials to get the most out of Monaca on the day you start using it.
Skeleton has been built as a starting framework. Rather than being used to build a fully functional website that uses complex UI components, it’s built that way. Skeleton’s boilerplate is perfect for anyone looking to build their first, or two thousand and first website. If you need a simple grid-based approach to building pages that look, feel and perform great, then choose Skeleton. Get the library and you’re all set, no additional setup tasks required.
CreateJ is a suite of modular libraries and tools that enable rich interactive content on open web technologies via HTML5. The creators designed these libraries to work entirely independent, or mixed and matched to suit your needs.
The four libraries are:
You can use each library independently from another. But you can also combine either all or two/three different libraries to create a very specific effect. An effect that’s necessary for your current app development process. CreateJS is the culmination of all four frameworks together.
HTML5 game development is growing each day. More and more people begin to use their computers and mobile devices to spend time indulging in interactive gaming content. Developers are busy crafting/learning/creating games that capture attention rather than temporary satisfaction. You can use the iio Engine for working with the HTML5 Canvas functionality. With this Engine, your development process will increase in both speeds, and performance.
Those new to game development in HTML5 can check out this Mozilla Hacks article, or this one from Intel that talks more about the setting up process for building your first game. But those experienced with at least the concepts — take a closer look at this article from HTML Goodies to learn more about advanced HTML5 game development capabilities and options.
Community Resources for HTML5 Developers
We are only seeing the very surface of the capabilities of web platforms right now. It’s essential to stay updated with the latest developments and insights within the HTML5 (and the Web in general) sphere. The best way to do this is through online communities, especially those frequently orbited by developers and software engineers. Here are a few we highly recommend:
- StackOverflow — StackOverflow is known for its professionalism and no-bullshit attitude. On StackOverflow, you can ask questions, as well as give answers. Most of all, you can stay updated with the latest happenings in HTML5 and see the natural unfolding process.
- Reddit — Reddit’s HTML5 board is about sharing insightful tutorials and articles, insights, and demo applications showcasing latest feature usage. Great for asking questions too.
- HTML5 Bookmarks — HTML5 Bookmarks is a daily link service that lets HTML5 developers explore the latest findings and happenings within HTML5 on the web. You can also skip back through archives to try and find some interesting and relevant information gems for your good.
What about yourself? What techniques do you rely upon to stay up to date with the latest happening in HTML5? We would love to hear your input on this question. We would be happy to expand this list of community resources to help better developers settle in the language.