The risks of staying on AngularJS after Dec ’21

The risks of staying on AngularJS after Dec ’21

AngularJS is approaching end-of-life

On July 1st 2018, Google announced that AngularJS had entered a 3-year Long Term Support (LTS) period, which meant that on the 31st of July 2021 they would no longer support or release updates for the AngularJS framework. Due to COVID-19, the LTS was extended by six months, and now organisations have until December 31, 2021 to take action.

Why are organisations still using AngularJS?

While AngularJS is a previous version of Angular, they are essentially two different frameworks. The major differences can be seen as far back as Angular 2.0, which was the first iteration after AngularJS – so it’s understandable why some organisations are still using the old AngularJS framework.

What will happen after the 31st December 2021?

Google will no longer maintain, update and provide patches for AngularJS. It will be your responsibility to resolve security, browser compatibility, JQuery and any other issues on the platform.

Are there any risks? What will this mean for my application?

  • Security Risk
    Since security patches will no longer be provided, your business may be vulnerable to new / previously unknown security threats.
  • Diminishing community support
    In its heyday, it was well supported by a large and active community. Now that the vast array of community-driven 3rd party libraries are no longer maintained, new security concerns and new technologies are no longer being accommodated.
  • Performance and agility
    When AngularJS was first launched in 2010 it was ground-breaking for its time, and as with any new tech, AngularJS came with its own weaknesses and design flaws.

    Modern UI frameworks have learnt from prior flaws and approaches. and are now far more performant and leaner. This means, not only are they more mobile friendly, but there is also a lot less & simpler code that needs to be written, making development, upgrade and deployment processes far quicker. By not upgrading, your organisation will miss out on the performance and agility of modern UI frameworks.

  • Skilled Resources.
    As time goes on, it will get harder and harder to find the skills to be able to maintain the code base. Developers, by nature, typically want to play with all the new toys.
  • Incompatibility
    As with any legacy technologies, over time they will get left behind. Adopting new approaches will be harder if not impossible. New approaches such as micro frontends, won’t be easily supported (if at all). CI /CD pipelines using legacy build/packaging tooling such as Gulp, etc, will become unstable and more unreliable over time.
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Won’t we just have to migrate our UI again?

A typical question that we get asked all the time from business decision makers is – ‘Won’t we just have to migrate our UI again?’

User interfaces are always at the cutting edge of technical progress, as it’s the interaction point where technology meets a human, and users’ expectations are always increasing.

IT decision-makers are usually (and understandably) concerned about the fast-paced JavaScript ecosystem, which is critical to modern UI development.

Perhaps the bigger questions to ask are: “Do you need to adopt and apply more flexible, evolutionary design principles?” and “Is it critical for your application to be able to quickly and easily adapt to any new demands, while still protecting critical business functions?”

These questions will help reposition the conversation away from the tactical approach to more strategic alignment.

For bigger applications, considering architectural approaches like micro frontends can maintain stability, provide flexibility and even provide the ability to run multiple technologies at the same time. Meaning, your UI can now be more modularised, giving you similar benefits to the more broadly known Micro-service architecture in the backend world.

I’m still unsure. What can I do next?

* Queue product placement and self-promotion *

Playtime Solutions has extensive experience in migrating organisations away from AngularJS – from simple to complex legacy applications. Get in touch , and we’ll be more than happy to talk you through the best steps for your organisation.

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