New Angular 2 beta release announced

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JS developers have been eagerly awaiting news about Angular.js which is undergoing a complete revamp. This update was first announced in September 2014 which led to a stage of alpha testing.

Today the Angular team has finally announced a full beta release of Angular v2. This is expected to be a complete shift away from Angular v1. Naturally this has caused some bitterness among developers.

For those who aren’t up-to-speed on the whole Angular v1/v2 debacle, here’s a brief recap(special thanks to /u/antoninj):

  • Angular v2 has a new syntax that’s completely different from Angular 1.X
  • Angular v2 has a different way of solving problems – even the vocabulary is different.
  • Because this is almost an entirely new framework, developers feel betrayed since updating from 1.x to 2.x would require a full rewrite of their app.
  • Since v2 is still in the works there’s no way to prepare for the rewrite.
  • Anyone picking up Angular v1 right now will be forced to relearn everything in a year.

While this is obviously annoying, there are many good things to consider. Angular v2 takes advantage of powerful ES6 features that haven’t been added into other similar MVC frameworks. All of Angular v2 is written in TypeScript with the hopes of attracting developers with the easier syntax.

Google’s dev team has even created an Angular CLI with source code on GitHub. The project is naturally still in development along with Angluar v2 – but this confirmation of a full beta release is one major step forward.

Curious devs can visit to download the latest version and read more about the upcoming changes.

You can also pull the newest v2 beta straight from GitHub’s Angular repository.

It seems the online documentation has recently been updated to reflect new additions to the framework. Unfortunately most of the docs still retain v1 info, but the process is moving ahead.

From the Angular beta 2 post it seems the dev team is hard at work to push out a final release. At the moment they have a lengthy yet respectable to-do list:

  1. Reducing Angular 2’s binary size.
  2. Making the Angular CLI usable end to end throughout the development process.
  3. Creating a more developer-friendly API for the Component Router.
  4. Support for animations.
  5. I18n and L10n support.

So far the v2 beta changes look incredible. There’s greater support for TypeKit, ES6 features, and Babel.

The Angular team is working to add richer dev tools and ultimately it seems like Angular v2 is primed to become a fierce player compared to alternative open source JavaScript frameworks.

Author: Jaime Morrison

Jaime is a jr. designer interested in mobile UI/UX research and frontend web development with JavaScript frameworks. He covers general news and useful resources in the web design space.