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Top 5 Performance Issues with AngularJS

What’s going on with AngularJS? Is it high time to seek Angular upgrade services? Well, the difficulties with AngularJS keep growing. Although 20.39% of worldwide developers prefer the AngularJS framework for frontend web application development, the tech stack has a market share of 1.5% with slightly over 300,000 customers. The open source tech stack was once ideal for building big websites as it allowed developers to write clean and robust code and reuse the same to duplicate similar functions. 

However, AngularJS has been around for a while. A new breed of frontend technologies has risen, and their superiority exposes AngularJS performance issues. But are these glitches something to worry about? This article explores 5 performance issues in AngularJS, their risks, and alternative technologies that offer greater security and efficiency. Keep reading to stay updated. 

What’s Wrong with AngularJS Framework?

AngularJS is a complicated framework that’s not only hard to learn but also lacks proper documentation, making it hard for developers to read or understand what’s going on in the frontend. Misko Hevery originally developed the framework in 2009 while working on a part-time project for Brat Tech LLC. 

A year later, Google launched the first version of AngularJS, dubbed Angular 1.x. As a free-to-use JavaScript framework, AngularJS became instrumental in building dynamic web pages of frontend applications until the entry of ReactJS. Stiff competition from the new framework culminated in the launch of Angular 2 in 2016. Although Angular 2 was a complete rewrite of AngularJS, the development team retained the JS name sans to avoid confusion. 

Since then, there have been several iterations of the framework to keep up with emerging tech. However, despite these improvements, AngularJS ‘end of life is imminent. AngularJS was deprecated because web applications built on AngularJS will have inferior security features over time, thanks to the exposed loopholes that go unfixed. Cybercriminals often exploit these loopholes to access web apps and run their malicious code.

5 Prevalent AngularJS Performance Issues 

While AngularJS is a powerful framework for open-source web development, it may not be that effective when a big website is involved. Unless you know how to implement the framework’s best practices, AngularJS difficulties will persist and eventually take a toll on your web app’s user experience. That said, here are the 5 prevalent problems with Angular JS performance. 

Typical AngularJS issues when developing web apps | ModLogix

1. Code organization 

One of the main technical problems with AngularJS is proper documentation during development, which can lead to poor code organization. Logical code organization is critical in big AngularJS websites as the practice helps developers keep track of important items and introduce more controllers and services as the code base grows. Without proper code organization, the directory structure may be bloated as more files are added. 

2. Debugging code 

Debugging is an inevitable, complex process for any web app development project. But, be that as it may, debugging is more complicated in web applications that run on AngularJS, thanks to the framework’s large-sized directory structure. In other words, the code is presented in one big chunk, making it hard to visualize it in sections and spot troublesome issues. Fortunately, this is one of the performance issues in AngularJS that can be addressed with the AngularJS Batarang extension.  

3. Loading JavaScript files 

Typically, a large AngularJS project requires several JavaScript files, which usually load one after the other. This means every JavaScript file is dependent on the other one to load, causing a drawn-out negative effect that hinders performance when loading files upfront in the shell page. The only way to mitigate this dependency is by uploading JavaScript files dynamically so that they can load as users request them—you’ll need RequireJS to achieve this functionality. 

4. Integrating third-party libraries 

Integrating libraries from a third-party to achieve desired business outcomes is a standard practice in any web development, not just applications powered by AngularJS. However, changes in the DOM when integrating third-party libraries can cause performance issues with AngularJS. The same issues can also arise when you return values through Ajax calls, making it hard to manually acknowledge the changes unless you initiate a $digest loop. 

5. Lazy loading 

Lazy loading is critical as it helps shorten the loading durations of a website, especially a large application that runs on AngularJS. Unfortunately, the framework’s development team doesn’t support lazy loading, a function that facilitates JavaScript files to load properly as the code base grows. Besides employing ReactJS alongside another open-source framework that supports lazy loading, you can do minification to enhance page speed. Alternatively, you can migrate to Angular, where all components load at once under a single Page Application (SPA). This might help you address some of the performance issues of AngularJS. 

What Are the Risks of Staying on AngularJS?

Google announced a one-time 3-year Long Term Support (LTS) for AngularJS on 1st July 2018. Following this announcement, no new updates have been released since the end of 2021, given that the LTS was extended by six months due to the Covid-19 pandemic interference. Despite being privy to this information, some organizations still run their website apps. 

Are there any risks with this approach? Well, there are several risks and AngularJS performance issues, including: 

Security risks 

The biggest risk of staying on AngularJS is safety, given that Google doesn’t provide new security patches after halting its LTS. In other words, websites that run on this framework are highly susceptible to new attacks as cybercriminals exploit emerging and previously unresolved loopholes. 

Compatibility issues 

AngularJS is a legacy technology, and its end of life is imminent. Integrating your app with new technologies will be an uphill task, if not impossible. This includes micro frontends, which may not be supported at all, or CI/CD pipelines that use innovative packaging tools like Gulp. Moreover, you might also experience browser compatibility issues when search engines evolve. 

Diminished performance and agility 

AngularJS was a ground-breaking framework during its launch back in the day. However, like any other technology, its weaknesses and design flaws have inspired the rise of new UI frameworks that have far way greater performance and agility. 

Skilled resources 

As the performance and agility of your web application diminish, it will also be harder to attract and retain talents to maintain your code in the coming days. While developers might have the skills to work around AngularJS, nearly all of them are fascinated by web development projects that expose them to new tools and technologies. 

AngularJS is one of the most dreaded web frameworks for developers | ModLogix

Community support 

Another risk that also exacerbates the technical issues of AngularJS is the community support that keeps shrinking over time. During the heydays, the framework enjoyed massive support from a large and vibrant developer community. Today, the community doesn’t address new security concerns or technologies. Moreover, a majority of community-centric third-party libraries are not supported today.

Superior Alternatives to AngularJS

Innovation is fast-paced in the software development industry, and it was just a matter of time before the successors of AngularJS gained traction following its drawbacks. AngularJS alternative frameworks aren’t just mobile-friendly but also introduce simpler code that can be duplicated without rewriting. 

By ignoring the possible upgrades and failing to implement AngularJS migration, your web app will be exposed to risks and lag in terms of the performance and agility of modern UI frameworks. There are various options that you can resort to escape the problems with AngularJS performance, including: 

  • React for building user interfaces and maintaining the frontend ecosystem. On top of a virtual DOM, the framework offers a one-way data binding for code stability, is SEO-friendly, and has a dedicated mobile solution known as React Native. 
  • Vue.js is a framework that’s easier to learn than AngularJS and also comes with a virtual DOM. It has a Command Line Interface (CLI) for speeding up development, as well as a data binding feature for assigning values to HTML. 
  • Backbone.js is a lightweight JavaScript library for creating single-page applications effortlessly. The technology comes with multiple building blocks, including events, models, and views, as well as extensive documentation with over 100 extensions. 

Alternatively, you can upgrade to Angular to address the technical issues with AngularJS. This alternative is a great option if you want to upgrade gradually and harness top-flight Angular features like TypeScript, CLI, and ngRX, among others. Moreover, you can simplify the upgrading process, depending on the underlying app to save time when rewriting the code.

That said, here are the key advantages of Angular migration: 

  • A host of intuitive features, eliminating the need to leverage endless third-party frameworks to achieve basic app functionality.
  • A fully-fledged and responsive framework that gives you a functional alternative for creating a service, module, or component. 
  • Based on Typescript for greater code organization and readability, making it easier to identify and remediate bugs. 
  • Cross-platform compatibility. 
  • Seamless app performance and constant updates.

Migrate from AngularJS to Angular with ModLogix Services 

ModLogix is a trusted legacy system modernization partner serving businesses across all industries. We take a custom, granular approach to any modernization project, ensuring that you benefit from a feasible solution that is efficient without breaking the bank. In other words, our primary goal is to save your company’s business value with secure, stable, and scalable alternatives to legacy systems. 

Our team has vast experience in upgrading AngularJS applications to Angular, a service that begins with a free consultation from top-tier experts. After that, our in-house developers will write AngularJS code incrementally, allowing it to exist alongside Angular side by side. Here is a use case on how we helped a client migrate from AngularJS to Angular 11

A premium IT and financial services client reached out to ModLogix, seeking to address the AngularJS performance issues that had plagued the company’s extensive platform, which had a multiple-module structure. Our team got down to work after analyzing the existing solution, listing the areas that required changes, prioritizing tasks, and breaking the project into milestones. The team then had to rewrite the system from scratch, but with the guidance of an elaborate risk management plan and a business analyst. 

While the project is ongoing, and there is still much to be done in terms of work and upkeep, the client is already happy with what the ModLogix team has handled so far. You can also get in touch with us for a successful AngularJS migration to a framework of your choice. 

Final Thoughts 

From this reading, one thing is evident. If your web application runs on AngularJS, you can’t continue using the framework, especially if you want to gain a competitive edge through continuous development and product stabilization. Sooner or later, you’ll need to migrate AngularJS to Angular 9+ or any other alternative that embodies your tech needs. 

Don’t hesitate to contact us for help with your migration project. 

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