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Directual vs. Bubble: Which is one better?

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It’s likely you’ve asked yourself a question: both Directual and Bubble can help me build what I want. Which is one better? In this short comparison article, we’ll have an unbiased (yes indeed, we like Bubble ourselves!) look at how these two solutions compare.

TL;DR: Both of these low-code/no-code platforms are great, yet the real use-case for each one is different. Bubble is more oriented towards building an MVP and switching to something else to scale it, whereas Directual is centered around creating scalable products based on building the architecture and databases first.

Well, folks, we have two perfectly capable no-code platforms designed to help you build anything you need, really. The real question is - which one suits your needs best? Stick around and find out! Let’s do this thing. 

What is Bubble?

A bubble is a globule of one substance in another, usually gas in a liquid. Ah, just kidding, Bubble is among the pioneers of no-code solutions as a service. They’ve been around for quite a while, ever since 2012. 

It’s a very team of professionals who proved to the entire world that no-code is much more than just a means to build landing pages. We don’t consider Bubble direct competition - we are different, and we share the idea of bringing no-code into the world and educating businesses all over about it. 

Creating software on Bubble begins with interface endpoints. You start with the components and then attach logic steps and data endpoints to them. There are a few tabs you can switch between to create the visual design, app architecture, and tie databases to what you’ve made. 

What is Directual?

It’s a no-code/low-code full-stack solution designed to build software that can be scaled without resorting to third-party solutions. Directual has fantastic back-end capabilities, so it can be used to build internal apps, backend functionality for existing software, automation of data processing, and a lot of other things in between. Being full-stack, front-end tasks can also be covered with Directual’s app builder. 

The software architecture is built with the help of logic cubes. Each cube is responsible for a particular action or sequence, with data being pulled from a database. It’s also possible to dig deeper into the produced code and add your own solutions to the mix if you know what you’re doing. 

Directual is also actively moving towards becoming a no-code solution for blockchain solution development, so you might want to look into this area too if you’re in the Fintech space. 

Pros & Cons: Bubble

Let’s take a brief look at what Bubble is great at and vice versa. Remember: there are no magic-bullet perfect tools, only those that do the job right in your particular case.

💪 Strong points:

  • A very large and vibrant community;
  • Extensive learning materials and bootcamps;
  • Advanced interface constructor that works well with external API endpoints;
  • 69 (nice) official plugins and loads more community-created plugins;
  • A great variety of app templates.

😔 Could be improved:

  • Back-end logic constructor leaves much to be desired;
  • The solution’s architecture makes scaling a very challenging thing to do;
  • The cost of use grows exponentially to app load increase;
  • Some things could be improved to achieve air-tight security;
  • New changes and adaptation to the target market are slow (based on customer feedback).

It is also pricier

Pros & Cons: Directual

And now time to have a nice, hard look at Directual. Keep in mind that Directual is a somewhat younger platform. 

💪 Strong points:

  • Powerful architecture capabilities and scenarios that can be used to build just about anything;
  • Excellent scaling capability which is linear to app load and tariff plans;
  • Plugins work precisely the same way they do in Bubble, could be copy-pasted if need be;
  • Pre-made UI building blocks allow to build complex functionality (user account area + registration + databases) in half an hour;
  • Enterprise-level security.

😔 Could be improved:

  • A quickly growing, but otherwise medium-sized community;
  • Learning materials are not complete yet (more on the way);
  • The interface builder leaves some things to be desired and compensates that with a possibility to connect external interface tools;
  • More intensive learning curve (it’s worth it though).

Less pricey

Why not both?

If you’re unconvinced to one or the other, you can always use the core strengths of both! It’s still much cheaper and faster than hiring a dev team. Just recently we’ve posted a case study on the matter, by the way. By using both Bubble and Directual, you’ll end up with:

  • A tool to create great front-end solutions that look really nice
  • Another tool to build a scalable back-end that’ll carry you from an MVP and up to enterprise-level solution complexity
  • A truckload of various integrations to choose from

Of course, that would imply that you’ll need to learn both platforms, which might be an added challenge. Bubble’s interface can seem quite a handful at first glance and takes getting used to. Depending on the presence of development experience (any will help), getting used to either of the platforms can take a month on average. Some knowledge of JavaScript will also be very handy. 

Conclusion

Bubble: great interfaces, looks nice, more established, but sucks at scaling and backend capabilities. Perfect fit for designers, MVP builders, etc. 

Directual: great backend and scaling, less established, but sucks at building state-of-the-art front-end - just normal stuff, nothing crazy. Perfect fit for programmers and product devs looking to greatly speed the development process.

Both: great bunch of no-code/low-code platforms that can be extremely efficient together. 

And thus, only one last step remains. Try them both out all out, see for yourself. If you’d like to learn how Directual works and how to get started with it, you should begin right here.

In case you’d like to ask us a question personally, don’t hesitate to reach out to hello@directual.com

Thanks for reading!

Pavel Ershov
April 12, 2022
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Directual is the only no-code development platform which combines flexibility and scalability of traditional coding with modern visual-development approach.