There are a number of frameworks built on top of React today, including Gatsby, Next.js, Remix, Redwood, Blitz, and others. In the past few years, Next.js has become one of the most popular frameworks thanks to its focus on performance, developer experience, and tight integration with Vercel deployment platform.
As an alternative to Next.js, Remix has recently gained a lot of attention and been heavily discussed. Next.js is already being evaluated by many developers as a potential tool for building applications. They will need to decide why they prefer one option over the other now that Remix is being offered as an alternative. This raises a number of questions.
What are their features? How do the frameworks affect the developer experience? Does one perform better than the other? What are their integration capabilities? Can they be deployed on any deployment platform? In this article, we will analyze the technical differences between both frameworks.
1. Data Loading
Data loading from your web application can be configured granularly in Next.js. A server can load data exclusively, a client can load data both ways, and you can load data at runtime or during construction. Next.js loading APIs are summarized below:
- Server-side + Client-side at runtime
- Server-side only at build time
- Server-side only at runtime
Static Site Generation (SSG) is a popular feature of the framework. It has been improved in some ways. In the getStaticProps method, you can use the stale-while-revalidate strategy if you need those SSG pages to update periodically. It will create a website with incremental static regeneration. This feature requires a CDN.
Remix has a very different vision. The server should always be the first place to load data according to them. Using services such as Cloud Flare Workers, we can execute the code on the edge based on the fetch API.
A named function loader can be defined on each root page, and the data will be available through a react hook API in both the server and client. This behavior is equivalent to getInitialProps /getServerSideProps in Next.js. You might have to drill a lot of props on the Next.js implementation.
2. Dynamic Response
Next.js sends HTML faster than Remix and then gets data via API. To load dynamic components, it generates all the static components on the server-side and incrementally regenerates them, then on the client-side, it calls API to get them. The user benefits from SSG here.
Remix is almost twice as fast as Next JS to load the same page. Remix wants to render everything on the server and does not want to do even a single API call.
3. Advantages / Disadvantages
Advantages of Next.js
- Building super-fast static websites that behaves like dynamic
- Great for User Experience
- Great for SEO
- Faster Time to Market
- Great Community Support
- Flexibility in building UX and UI
- Short page load time
Disadvantages of Next.js
- Requires development in order to make changes
- Poor plugin ecosystem
- No built-in state manager
- Considered as a more expensive option
Advantages of Remix
- It performs dynamic server-side rendering.
- It knows when to refetch mutated data, as Remix oversees the whole workflow.
- It includes an end-to-end solution with React Router, server-side rendering, production server, and backend optimization.
Disadvantages of Remix
- Remix cannot create real (non-test) user accounts to transfer funds between them.
- You have no control over the configuration of the Blockchain created by Remix.
- You cannot even monitor the execution of the transactions.
- Remix misses out on several advanced operations.
4. Use Cases
Next.js websites are very useful when they are:
- Large multi-user websites
- Client-side rendered applications (SPA/MPA)
- Big e-commerce websites
- Web portals
However, you can also use Next.js to build simpler websites, which is also possible with Gatsby.
These websites include:
- B2B and SaaS websites
- Finance websites
Any platform and system can be accessed through the Remix. This allows you to utilize any HTTP server using Remix, as a request handler. You have the following options when building a Remix app, as of this writing:
- Remix App Server
- Express Server
- Cloudflare Pages
- Architect (AWS Lambda)
5. State While Revalidate
Remix uses the stale-while-revalidate caching directive (SWR) to serve content as quickly as possible. When the app receives traffic, it primes the cache instead of pre-generating static content. For the next visitor, the pages and documents are served from the cache while they are revalidated in the background.Stale-while-revalidate is also supported by Next.js. It is possible to use stale-while-revalidate cache control headers in the getServerSideProps function.
6. Static Site Generation (SSG)
By contrast, Next.js supports static site generation (SSG) at build time, while Remix does not. This feature may be beneficial depending on the type of pages we wish to create. SSG allows us to fetch data and render pages during the build process, so we don't have to wait for the content to be generated before users see our website.
We must wait for the build process to generate a new version of the static assets whenever we make changes to our application's code or content. Build time will increase if our project grows bigger and bigger, which could become a pain point. A new On-Demand ISR feature and incremental static regeneration were developed by the Next.js team in order to address this problem.
Many people are using Remix for personal projects and toy applications, except for Kent's website, as with most new technologies. In contrast, Next.js is used in many production applications.
We have discussed a variety of categories. Here's a recap. One framework dominates some categories, while another is essentially equal in others. Based on the points previously presented, these comparisons are not an exact science and represent only the writer's humble opinion.
In addition to blogs, e-commerce, and data-intensive dashboards, either framework is suitable for a wide range of applications. It will largely depend on what features are required for your application, which development style is preferred by the developers on your team, and how much tolerance you have for new technologies.