Bootstrap Studio vs Pinegrow or Webflow

There is one important factor your left out in your reviews…

COST (in U.S. dollars)

(1) Bootstrap Studio - $60 one-time fee, includes lifetime updates, includes 5 free website hosting slots, includes free form email service. For beginners, I don’t think anything comes remotely close to this software value in terms of features you get for the price.

(2) Pinegrow - Basic subscription is $99 PER YEAR, Annual (One-time) is $150 for one year (interactions (animations) not included & cost an extra $30 IIRC.) Wordpress version - add $50. Tailwind Version - add another $50. No free hosting, no forms. It’s a powerful platform, with dedicated developers and a good user base, but suffers from a somewhat cludgy UI, mediocre documentation, and a lot of old tutorials and videos that don’t align with the current version’s UI. For a beginner, I can see them easily quitting PG out of frustration over the aforementioned things.

(3) Wappler - Basic is $240 and Pro is $480!!! PER YEAR This program is quite expensive, and probably a hard nut to justify for many freelancers or casual developers. It says Wappler includes free Google Firebase hosting. I can’t comment on that, or any of the other program features because I don’t own Wappler. I do own BSS and Pinegrow, but obviously Wappler is the only one of the three that builds both front-end and back-end websites (unless you count Pinegrow’s WP version.) So Wappler’s significantly higher cost may be justified if you are building large or complex, database-driven websites for clients.

Total agreed. I intentionally left out the pricing. Reason being, if functionality is lacking price becomes secondary. If I can get a good function font-end and back-end tool, i would go for it. But, as you rightly said, affordability comes into play when consideration depending on who wants it. I am freelance guy to me every penny counts.

One thing that will make Bootstrap Studio really a WOW is full availability of all the features of Bootstrap. Eg. datatables.

But is Wappler open vanilla and agnostic doesn’t it instead cause users to rely on their framework / libraries to do so? You don’t mind that aspect?

Agreed.

One of the great things about BSS is that the developers are truly passionate and dedicated to improving the software. I’ve owned hundreds of programs over the last 40 years using computers, and few of them have had such dedicated and responsive developers as @martin and his team. They really do listen to our (the users) ideas, suggestions and advice, and they often incorporate suggestions and requests we ask for in their updates. They also fix bugs in the software FAST (sometimes in 24 hrs!) That’s pretty rare these days among most software companies.

And the bigger the company, the less I’ve found they pay attention to user requests. Adobe, for example, would take YEARS to address issues and requests from users, even when it involved things like fixing obvious bugs in their programs that the Adobe developers themselves would admit existed. They’d complain about the massive corporate bureaucracy that would tie their hands, and prevent them from fixing stuff they themselves knew needed to be fixed. I can’t imagine the frustration of working in such an environment.

So if you want more Bootstrap features added to the program, definitely post your suggestions/requests in the Ideas category of this forum. You may very well see your request granted in a future update or release.

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Agreed. It nails you to their framework. But, facing reality, that is how they can deliver the functionality. Otherwise, it will not be different from BS or Pinegrow. I tried Webflow, this one may not work well for beginners. To me beginners should use BS, to speed up delivery, and then mature into something more complex like Pinegrow. The likes like Scriptcase is really overloaded. Compared to Scriptcase or Appgini, i would rather stick to something like PHPRad as it keeps basics intact my 2 feet on the ground. Sad, PHPRad is slowly fading although people are still trying to keep it afloat.

Basically, things like Webflow and Wappler will soon make us forget the basics. I would rather go for BS or Pinegrow to keep my sanity on the basics. Its not easy to get your clients or staff all ramped up to all these framework based tools. I hate Laravel for the same reasons. Its grossly overloaded. So we stuck to Codeigniter which is lightweight and easy to grow with anything the developer needs. Like, i just developed and installed the RestAPI server in my CI apps within 2 hours, all tested and ready.

I would avoid using frameworks like Vue.js, React, Node.js. Why, simply they tend to over glorify javascript and JS is the most unstable language i have ever used. Every 3 months some new code structure turns up and lose keeping track. Just imagine an app that used ES5 all the way and we pick up the app after learning ES6 or 7. Will be completely lost unless i go backward and learn the code differences in ES 5 and ES 6. Such a waste of time and time is money.

I am basically looking for website developer tool which can generate the pages and components i need and load them into my CI application. In CI apps we use things like Datatables a lot. Though we could use BS to develop the web end of the app, we still lack the ability to create the template needed to present the server side data to the front end.

Can someone guide me to n up-to-date set of tutorials which help me learn from “getting started” to creating full website? Some of the tutorials are disjoint and outdated. Appreciate it.

You ever give PHPStorm a go? I would rather use an open industry framework than consider being tied into Wappler’s system. Developer life is constant learning, thankfully vanilla JS is maturing rapidly. For the record it appears Bootstrap Studio will not be getting better PHP or JS support according to the developer.

No such tutorials exist (to my knowledge.) I’ve toyed with the idea of creating something like this, but I know it would be a massive endeavor, and right now I am too busy trying to rebuild my business, and get new website clients.

I’d also be worried about creating such a tutorial, and never recouping the investment in time and effort. I’d have to make it a paid course on a platform like Udemy (or similar,) but I haven’t even had the time to look into what’s involved in doing this.

Back in the early 2010’s, I was consistently building 3-4 sites a month, but they were old-style, non-responsive sites. By 2013, it had become clear to me that responsive-design and “mobile-friendly” were going to be the future of the internet. I knew I had to scramble to learn responsive design, but I procrastinated. By 2015, I lost nearly 30% of my business.

I finally settled on going with Bootstrap, bought and taught myself Pinegrow, then Bootstrap Studio, and just as I was starting to get some momentum rolling, the damn pandemic hit and killed most of 2020. It’s only been since January that I’ve started picking up new work again. At the moment (Thor be praised) I’m in the middle of three website builds, with hopefully another one or two coming in next month.

I’d really love to build a BSS tutorial, but right now, paying the bills comes first.

PrintNinja,

So sorry to hear that. The tutorial should have been created and maintained by BSS themselves. They should not just focused selling product. They need focus on quality and delivery. So Sad. Hope this does not cause BSS to face the same state as PHPRad.

I think the user-base of Bootstrap Studio is strong enough that we would not let the program just “fade away.” I would certainly be willing to pay an annual renewal fee to keep this product in development.

I have not seen any indication from the developers that they are not fully committed to the continued development of BSS, especially with the upcoming release of Bootstrap 5. I think that they just want to keep the company modest, and and focus on building a quality, more personalized product with a group of loyal and dedicated users, as opposed to simply trying to scale to compete with the other major players in this industry. Bigger companies almost always mean more headaches. Some people are content with the growth they have, even if the potential exists to grow much bigger, much faster.

But I totally I agree that BSS suffers from a lack of a comprehensive user guide, and the paltry number of “how to” videos is a definite negative in terms of attracting new users. BSS has 3 or 4 rather limited videos, vs (for example) Webflow, that has well over a hundred. The number of new users who come to the forums regularly asking the same simple questions over and over is a clear indication that better tutorials and how-to videos are needed.

If I owned BSS, I would immediately raise the price of the program, and use the increased revenue to, at minimum, hire a staff member to produce a detailed and thorough user guide, and get started on making many more tutorial videos. I might also consider a full-time support person on chat during business hours, and a BSS staff member monitoring the forum on a daily basis.

Webflow by comparison has investors and venture capitalists pumping money into the company. They just secured another 140 Million in Series B funding. So by contrast I don’t think they struggle creating documentation, videos and pumping out vast amounts of marketing throughout the industry. It’s probably not fair for us to compare various smaller indie style developers with behemoths like Webflow and what they can offer by contrast.

I would venture to guess that Bootstrap Studio is not the only project at Zine - “We specialize in interactive web applications, online publishing and creating beautiful software.”

Replied to you in a PM (so as to not keep filling up the Help and How To section with non-relevant posts (I need to set a good example, practice what I preach, etc… etc…) :wink:

I did flag it to the devs to move it to another section, but so far no luck. I wouldn’t worry about it, I’m sure they will move it eventually.

Thanks @jo-r
If only there were some forum moderators who followed the forums daily and could do these changes. :roll_eyes:

Hi PrintNinja,

This will be my last comment on the subject. As you said too much time moaning has no value.

Some of my staff and friends have decided to drop BSS for something like Pinegrow in the meantime. The lack of functionality and support docs/tutorial is also turning me off. Its really useless focusing on enhancement when existing version is losing users. Its like Laravel. Many of the users are still reeling with changes in version 6 and they go on to version 8. Stupid strategy. That’s why we stay on with Codeigniter. They are slowly but surely doing a good job with version 4 while version 3 user dont die.

Stay safe, stay free, my friend.

Best tutorials? do U have any good for giving to the public? on BBS website are only 4. IMO it`s not enough

@karol.kiepas all I see in your post is an advertisement for another app. Please don’t be so rude as to do that on other software apps forums. Rude, very rude. Your question isn’t even a real question.

ok, can you tell me what other application I’m talking about because I don’t think I mentioned any.
if you don’t know how to answer, please don’t write unreliable posts that you won’t be able to answer later

There was no reason to post the link for wappler in that post. Has nothing to do with your comment or with BSS.

As for tutorials for BSS, there are many more than 4 if you go through the Docs. You just have to make an effort and read it :stuck_out_tongue:

you havve right. i dont know why this wappler post was linked. i dont know what wappler is. never used it :wink:
learnig from docs is good option but not for me. not efective. i like to follow tutorials insteed.

No worries on the link, sounds like you may have had it highlighted maybe to copy and paste it to see what it was in the browser and it used it as a Quote in your post lol. Sorry if I was mistaken there too.

Give the docs a try, they are actually a bunch of little tutorials about how things work and you won’t be sorry you took the time to do it. It’s a great app, one of the best out there for it’s price too. Can’t hurt to give it a try. :slight_smile: