4 min read

It can be overwhelming to choose which framework is the best framework to use to get the job done in JavaScript, because you have so many options out there. In previous years, we have seen two popular frameworks come to fame: React and Angular. React has gained a lot of popularity because it is what Facebook and Instagram are built on. So, which one do you use? If you ask most JavaScript developers, they advise you to use one or the other, and that comes down to personal choice. Let’s go ahead and explore Angular and React, and actually explore how the two can work together

A common misconception about React is that React is a full JavaScript framework in competition with Angular. But it actually is not. React is a user interface library and is just the view in an ‘MVC’ framework, with a little bit of a controller in it. In other words, React is a template (an Angular term for view) where you can add some controller logic.It is the same idea of integrating the jQuery UI into JavaScript. React aids in Angular, which is a frontend framework, and makes it more efficient for the user. This is because you can write a reusable component that can be plugged into an application.

Angular has many pros, and that’s what makes it so appealing to a lot of developers and companies. With my personal experience, Angular has been very powerful in making solid applications. However, one of the cons that bothers me about Angular is how it goes about executing a template. I always want to practice writing DRY code and that can be a problem with Angular. You can end up writing a bunch of HTML that can be complicated and difficult to read. But you can also end up causing a spaghetti effect in your CSS.

One of Angular’s big strengths is the watchers and the binders. When executed correctly in well-thought-out places, it can be great for fast binding and good responsiveness. But like every human, we all make errors, and when misused, you can have performance issues when binding way too many elements in your HTML. This leads to a very slow and lagged application that no one wants to use.


But there is a way to rectify this. You can use React to aid in Angular’s downfalls.React was designed to work really well with other libraries and makes rendering views or templates much faster. The beauty of React is how it uses a more efficient algorithm on the virtual DOM. In plain terms, it allows you to change parts of the application that need to be updated without having to touch the rest of the application. You can send a command to update the user interface and React compares these changes to the existing DOM.

Instead of theorizing on how Angular and React complement one another, let’s see how it looks in code.

First, let’s create an HMTL file that has an Angular script and a React script.

*Remember, your relative path may be different from the example. 

Next, let’s create a React component that renders a string that is inputted by the user. 

What is happening here is that we are using React to render our model. We created a component that renders the props passed to it. Then we create an Angular directive and controller to start the app. The directive is calling the React component and telling it to render.

But, let’s take a look at another example that integrates Angular 2. We can demonstrate how a React component can be self-contained but still be injected into the Angular 2 world.

Angular 2 has an optional hook, onInit(), that takes advantage of triggering the code to render a React component.

As you can see, the host component has defined implementation for the onInit handler, where you can call the static initialize function. If you noticed, the initialize method is passing a title text that is passed down from the React component as a prop.

*React Component

Another item to consider that unites React and Angular is TypeScript. This is a big deal because we can manage both Angular code and React code in the same compilation step. When it comes down to it, TypeScript is what gets stripped down to regular JavaScript. One thing that you have to remember to do is tell the compiler that you are using JSX by specifying the JSX flag.

To conclude, Angular will always remain a very popular framework for developers. For an application to render faster, React is a great way to render templates faster and create a more efficient user experience. React is a great compliment to Angular and will only enhance your application.

About the author

Mary Gualtieri is a full-stack web developer and web designer who enjoys all aspects of the web and creating a pleasant user experience. Web development, specifically frontend development, is an interest of hers because it challenges her to think outside of the box and solveproblems, all while constantly learning. She can be found on GitHub at MaryGualtieri.

2 COMMENTS

  1. This is exactly what I was looking for, I really want to use React components with my Angular apps. Do you think this is still a viable solution now in 2018, with Angular 6?

    Thanks for any help you can offer. This topic is very obscure

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