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3.5.3  / 14 July 2017
Ionic is a complete open-source SDK for hybrid mobile app development. The original version was released in 2013 and built on top of AngularJS and Apache Cordova. The more recent release, known as Ionic 2 or simply “Ionic”, are built on Angular. Ionic provides tools and services for developing hybrid mobile apps using Web technologies like CSS, HTML5, and Sass. Apps can be built with these Web technologies and then distributed through native app stores to be installed on devices by leveraging Cordova. Ionic was created by Max Lynch, Ben Sperry, and Adam Bradley of Drifty Co. in 2013.
Ionic was created by Drifty Co. in 2013. Drifty’s prior products include Codiqa and Jetstrap, drag-and-drop interface building tools using jQuery Mobile and Bootstrap. Taking feedback from customers who tried to build mobile apps, the team decided to build their own framework that would focus on performance and be built with modern Web standards. After releasing an alpha version of the framework in November 2013, a 1.0 beta was released in March 2014, a 1.0 final in May 2015, and several 2.0 releases in 2016.
In 2015 Ionic developers reportedly created over 1.3M apps with the SDK.
Services and features
Ionic provides all the functionality that can be found in native mobile development SDKs. Users can build their apps, customize them for Android or iOS, and deploy through Cordova. Ionic includes mobile components, typography, interactive paradigms, and an extensible base theme.
Using Angular, Ionic provides custom components and methods for interacting with them. One such component, collection repeat, allows users to scroll through a list of thousands of items without any performance hits. Another component, scroll-view, creates a scrollable container with which users can interact using a native-influenced delegate system.
Developers can programmatically control the scroll-view to get the scroll position, scroll to bottom/top, zoom, or get information about the current scroll-view instances.
$ionicScrollDelegate.scrollTop(); $ionicScrollDelegate.scrollBottom(); $ionicScrollDelegate.zoomTo(1.5); $ionicScrollDelegate.getScrollView();
Ionic also provides a powerful command-line interface (CLI), so developers can get started with creating a project with a simple command. The CLI also allows developers to add Cordova plugins and additional front-end packages, enable push notifications, generate app Icons and Splash screens, and build native binaries.
Ionic is focused on building for modern Web standards and for modern mobile devices. For Android, Ionic supports Android 4.1 and up. For iOS, Ionic supports iOS 7 and up. Ionic 2 supports the Universal Windows Platform for building Windows 10 apps. Ionic Framework, powered by Angular.js, supports BlackBerry 10 apps.
Compared to hybrid applications, mixing Ionic code with native mobile app code in PhoneGap (now called Apache Cordova) allows for higher performance of the resulting product: utilizing AngularJS (rather than jQuery) allows Ionic to rely on native hardware acceleration (rather than extensive DOM manipulation). Ionic leverages CSS transitions and transforms for animation as a way to leverage the GPU and maximize available processor time.
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- “How 2015 Went for Ionic”. The Official Ionic Blog. 5 January 2016. Retrieved 11 January 2016.
- “Ionic Documentation Overview, Browser Support”. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
- “Announcing Windows Support in Ionic 2”. Retrieved 22 April 2016.