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Web Dev in JS vs. Android Dev in Kotlin - what would you choose?

Félix Paradis
Interested in the Jamstack ecosystem. Big fan of remote work because also a big fan of living in the woods 🌲 Wannabe indie hacker!
・1 min read

Dearest DEV community,

I have 2+ years of professional experience working as a web developer with the MEAN stack. In my spare time, I do enjoy tinkering with Svelte and jamstacky technologies such as Hugo, Netlify and other SSGs.

I'm also unemployed at the moment (long story) and just started job hunting. An opportunity to work as an Android developer with Kotlin is already presenting itself and I wonder what the developer experience is like with Android/Kotlin.

From ~10 minutes of research it seems like Kotlin is at least as loved as JS, but I'd love to hear testimonials from actual devs who have experience in both JS/web dev and Kotlin/Android dev

Thanks!

Discussion (8)

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FJones

That depends a lot on what you want. Money? Kotlin. Self-fulfillment in what you're doing? Probably still Kotlin but not Android. Modern technologies? Almost certainly JS, but I would encourage keeping a path out open. Challenges and constant new solutions? JS.

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Félix Paradis Author • Edited

Self-fulfillment in what you're doing? Probably still Kotlin but not Android.

Why is that, why not Android?

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FJones

For much the same reasons as @jmfayard mentioned: The Android SDK is huge and full of traps. Traps which (unlike JS) result in crashes and the App just outright not running. Kotlin as a language is great, but Android as a platform is incredibly frustrating.

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Jean-Michel Fayard 🇫🇷🇩🇪🇬🇧🇪🇸🇨🇴 • Edited

Kotlin is great, learning Android not so much.
It's not something you can do on top of other things, it's a full time activity. The SDK is huge, always moving, you never know what are the current best practices, which would be soon obsolete anyway. There are lots of landmines ready to explode in Android development, so if you learnt JavaScript you will probably feel at home :)

Auto-promotion:

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Félix Paradis Author

haha thanks for the kind reply!
I'll definitely look at your auto-pomoted articles if I take the Kotlin route.

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Manav Misra

JS - more versatility - many applications. One language to...not necessarily 'rule' 👑 them all - but can hang with them all in terms of application, full-stack + native with one language 👏🏽.
But eventually, you may need to shift into a specialty (Swift/Kotlin) for 'really big' stuff.

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Levi Rizki Saputra

I would choose both. Kotlin and JS is great language. Kotlin tooling is heavy. I think Kotlin is not great for small project. In other hand, JS tooling is light. Its great for small project. However, for big Project Kotlin is better than JavaScript.

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vaclavhodek

Kotlin is awesome and way better than JavaScript, and I would choose for more than Android development.

The whole backend for Localazy is written in Kotlin.