Each year we, like other large teams at Google, go through a planning process to set our goals and areas of focus for the upcoming year. Normally, product teams closely guard these documents, since they may contain commercially-sensitive information or relate to areas of competitive advantage. However, as an open-source project, we believe that transparency is a virtue: it allows greater trust in our future and direction and allows others to make plans with better clarity as to how their investments may connect to ours.
As such, today we’re sharing our annual strategy doc with the community at large for the first time. In this document, we express our mission, share some guiding principles, and describe the major investments that we plan to undertake in the coming year. By necessity, there are some minor redactions (such as commercially-sensitive data or references to unannounced products), but we believe this provides a good overview of our plans. This strategy document should be read alongside the engineering roadmap on our wiki, which adds further specifics around features that we’re working on.
An important note on the use of the word ‘we’ in the above sentences, which may be read as “those who Google pay to work on Flutter”. Flutter is the work of many contributors inside and outside Google. While Google is the largest sponsor as measured by a number of paid contributors, it is not the only contributor. In the last year, thousands of individuals have contributed their intellectual property and labor to the project, ranging from individuals to large corporations such as Canonical, Microsoft, ByteDance, and Alibaba.
Therefore, while the strategy document describes the investments that Google is making and shares the rationale behind those decisions, it isn’t intended to put boundaries on how others contribute to Flutter. We hope our work is well-aligned with the needs of the community at large, but we anticipate one benefit of sharing this document is that others will see opportunities for their own investments, either by building on work that Google plans to contribute or by filling areas that we are not prioritizing.
Some examples of this include the work that Sony is doing on embedded Linux; the investments that Toyota and other automotive companies are making on using Flutter in Automotive Grade Linux, and work from Samsung and others to port Flutter to Tizen. While none of this work is listed in our strategy document, it is part of the Flutter project, just like any code that Google contributes. And of course, there are tens of thousands of packages that build on the framework, the vast majority of which come from developers outside of Google.
One final disclaimer: our strategy will likely evolve over time as we continue to engage with the community, and as business priorities and strategies change. As a result, nothing here should be seen as representing a binding commitment, even though we plan to follow this as our guide.