Exploring Angular 17's Flow Control Syntax

Exploring Angular 17's Flow Control Syntax

With the release of Angular 17, developers are treated with a revamped and more intuitive flow control syntax. In this blog post, we'll explore its benefits and demonstrate how it can simplify your code.

Flow control structures in programming are essential for managing the execution flow of your application. Traditionally, Angular has relied on directives like ngIf, ngFor, and ngSwitch to control the rendering of templates based on conditions. While these directives have served Angular developers well, Angular 17 takes a leap forward by introducing a more modern and concise syntax.

The New Flow Control Syntax

As stated in the official blog post from Angular's website

The new declarative control flow brings the functionality of NgIf, NgFor, and NgSwitch into the framework itself, and deferrable views allow templates to load dependencies lazily, in response to one or more configurable trigger conditions.

Currently, the biggest flow control pain point in our templates is the need to keep creating extra DOM elements when using a directive or when applying multiple directives, for the most part, we employ an <ng-container> element for this if we don't wish to add those extra DOM elements. Else statements also require the creation of separate <ng-template> declarations.

This also applies when we wish to use multiple directives simultaneously. When multiple directives need to collaborate, it can become challenging and leads to increased code in our templates.

What does it look like?

Here's an example of the traditional flow control in Angular:

And here's the same piece of code with the new syntax:

In summary, Angular 17's new flow control syntax simplifies template code, enhances code clarity, promotes consistency, and ultimately makes Angular development more enjoyable and maintainable. While there's a slight learning curve for those familiar with the old directive syntax, the benefits in terms of code readability and maintainability make the transition worthwhile.