Astroid Joomla Framework Review, The Best and Newest of 2018

 Summary: Astroid Joomla Framework is the best new Joomla Framework release of 2018. This review will explain how Astroid is used, demonstrating unique features. Try Astroid today!Astroid Joomla Framework

 

The latest of 2018

Astroid Joomla Framework is the newest offering for Joomla users. It is a clean, simple to use but highly customisable Joomla Framework. Click to Tweet

The team are experienced and the business is mature, having started a number of years ago. You can ensure you will receive the best support and excellent service from them. Astroid was developed by JoomDev (https://www.joomdev.com), who are an Indian Joomla Developer with many overseas clients, including USA.

 

Astroid Joomla Framework Overview & Tutorial Video

 

Bootstrap 4 Compatible

In line with best practice, Astroid is Bootstrap 4 compatible.

 

Upcoming Developments

Chetan, one of the managing directors of JoomDev have informed us that they will be implementing a drag and drop builder for Astroid in three month from this review. This is exciting news, and we are told that it will be similar to Helix's SP Page Builder. In fact JoomDev are experienced in the Helix Framework and have created a product very different from Helix, which is much better. We know this because we have built web pages on Helix and have taken Astroid for a spin and made our own demo (https://astroid.classdigital.com.au/). We find it a very flexible and powerful Framework and we look forward to new developments.

 

Quickstart Package

Like every other Joomla Framework, Astroid allows you to install a sample website via Quickstart package:

Astroid Quickstart

The templates automatically install:

Astroid Template

Get Astroid


Get Astroid

Preloader

JoomDev have included a preloader with every template. This is a feature we do not often see in most Joomla Frameworks, but it is a very good feature. Much like Lazy Load Images, a preloader prevents bounce rates and visitors dropping off:

Astroid Preloader

 

Colour customisaion

Astroid allows you to customise colours on many different levels. Here is an example of a colour picker for Astroid:

Astroid Colours

For the most part, there are a lot of colour options, and even transparency. However, I think the colour picker can be improved with the addition of Hexadecimal Colours, rather than just Decimal Colours. Having both is a great thing.

 

Back to top

The Astroid Joomla Framework includes a Back to Top button for all Templates. This is a neat and useful feature that is not automatically present in more established Joomla Frameworks like Gantry:

Astroid Back to Top

There are plenty of customisations and you can even switch it off based on device:

Astroid Back to Top Options

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Get Astroid

Header

There are plenty of ways to customise the Header in Astroid, see below:

Astroid Header

And even more options below:

Astroid Header 2

As you will find, this Framework aims to give you as many customisation options as possible without coding whilst maintaining simplicity.

Get Astroid


Get Astroid

Logo

There are even many options for logos! Even the Favicon can be changed in the Astroid backend! Though we will not show you here, this is a review not tutorial. 

Astroid Logo

 

Layout

Here is how the Astroid Layout looks like:

Astroid Layout

Here you can place special modules such as Astroid Footer, or input module positions like bottom-1, bottom-2 and so on. In this instance I have a four column setup with the last column empty. Now, if you wish to do so, you can indeed leave this empty. However, by pressing the "+", you are able to input a module or module position:

Empty Position

 In this case, we are inputting a module position. Astroid automatically suggests positions. As you can see, after completing this menu, the new module position is made:

New Position

 There are also "Design Settings" in the Astroid Layout:

Astroid Design

You are able to modify design related settings like colour and so on in this section:

Astroid Layout Colour

In order to modify the Bootstrap column layout, you must select "Edit Grid" on the far right:

Edit Grid

Notice you can easily duplicate rows below the "Edit Grid" button. The grid options are numerous and look like this:

Astroid Edit Layout

Unlike Helix, it is much easier to visualise the column layout selection you make because of these illustrations. As you can see, JoomDev is trying to give you as many options as possible without coding and maintaining simplicity without compromise of flexibility.

 

Custom Coding

You can input custom code easily on Astroid. There is a dedicated section just for you to enter custom code. In Gantry 5, you are able to enter the Google Analytics UA Code to enable Google Analytics. Whilst there is no such option here, there is a section to enter tracking codes like Facebook Pixels, etc:

Astroid Custom Code

Inserting custom code in Astroid is easy. There is even a SCSS file for major changes, just like Gantry 5. But please note, the objective of the Astroid Joomla Framework is to allow you to design with as little coding as possible.

Get Astroid


Get Astroid

Social

Here is the social icons section, you can see options for social icon placement can be adjusted in many ways:

Astroid SocialThere are quite a number of popular social profiles you can select. However, if the option is unavailable, you can use Font Awesome to create a custom icon and thus, a custom profile. We have done just that by using the Font Awesome code for the icon:

Astroid Font Awesome

We use Gantry 5 for most of our projects, now the approach of Astroid is not the same as Gantry, however, we note that in the Astroid Joomla Framework, you cannot alter the Offcanvas section other than the colours. This is a shortcoming because in Gantry, the Offcanvas can be customised and we place social icons in the Offcanvas Mobile Menu, something not available in Astroid, but perhaps a future feature.

Another differentiating point between Gantry and Astroid is that in Gantry, the mobile menu can be brought up by sliding to the right. This feature is not in Astroid yet.

Despite these comments, we are by no means not saying Astroid is not a good Joomla Framework. On the contrary, it is very good, but Astroid is in infancy. Two features available to Astroid not present in Gantry is the preloader and customisation of Menus, seen earlier. In Gantry, you only have one option for your menu. Astroid allows for plenty of customisation as seen earlier. 

 

Benchmarks

We have benchmarked Astroid and we are very pleased with the results, see below:

Astroid Benchmark

Astroid scores really well. It is compatible with JCH Optimize, and loads in under three seconds for this website. The Astroid Joomla Framework is already well designed from the beginning. Perhaps one day it will be a contender for the CMS Critic Awards.

 

Conclusion

 Astroid aims to be an easy to use but powerful and flexible Joomla Framework. For the most part, it achieves its objectives, alllowing for many customisations without coding. 

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Simple layout
  • Many customisations
  • Less coding
  • Bootstrap 4 compatible
  • Has Font Awesome
  • Competitively priced ($39USD per template, many free templates)
  • Dedicated support team

Cons:

  • None

Astroid is in its infancy. It has only been released for a short period of time at the time of writing. There will be many developments for Astroid and perhaps one day, it will be a world leader. In the meantime, if you wish to be an early adopter, please click the banners to visit JoomDev, the developers of the Astroid Joomla Framework. Should you require our services, please have a look at what we do here. If you need a Joomla website, we support these frameworks.

10Overall10Ease of Use10Features Available10Value for Money