Bootstrap is one of the most popular front-end frameworks used for web development. It provides a set of CSS, JavaScript, and HTML components that help developers create responsive and mobile-first web pages.

The latest version, Bootstrap v5, has several new features and improvements over version 4. This blog provides a quick comparison between Bootstrap v5 and v4 and discusses some of its key features and how they help you develop a better UI.

What’s New with Bootstrap 5

Bootstrap helps build websites and web pages quickly and with a better UI. Ideally, it saves time from writing a lot of CSS code and gives developers more time to design web pages. In addition, UI developed through Bootstrap is more responsive.

Bootstrap 5 has introduced a plethora of changes and improvements. Some of the major updates include the addition of new components, new classes, revamped styling for existing components, enhanced browser support, the removal of outdated components, and several other changes.

Some of you might be using Bootstrap v4 and know the benefits and limitations of using this framework. However, as the v5 is available now, here is a quick comparison of the two versions, to help you understand what’s new with Bootstrap 5.

Boostrap V4 vs V5

Based on Bootstrap 4 Bootstrap 5
Grid System It provides 5 default responsive grid tiers named as xs, sm, md, lg, xl. It provides 6 default responsive grid tiers named as xs, sm, md, lg, xl, xxl
JavaScript/jQuery It depends on jQuery and must use jQuery before using bootstrap. It uses pure Vanilla JavaScript and had removed jQuery.
Internet Explorer Support It supports IE10 and IE11 but does not support IE8 and IE9 It does not support for IE10 and IE11
Color It provides us limited colour supports. It comes with an expanded color palette.
Fonts and Font size It does not provide a default responsive font size. It gives a default Responsive font size, allowing to scale the text responsively in all viewports and devices
Form Elements Each Form Element looks different on each OS and browser e.g., radio button, dropdown, switches, checkbox etc. All Form Elements have a consistent look that is supported in all OS and browser.
Gutter It comes up with .gutter with font size in px. Default: 30 px It has introduced .g* with font size in rem. Default 2rem and has more control on gutter width.
CSS Custom Properties and Variable It does not provide any custom properties for components, layout options such as table components It gives a choice of CSS Custom Properties for components and layout options.
Vertical Spacing Classes no vertical spacing classes. Vertical classes for spacing.
Utilities API and Helpers We are not able modify Utilities classes in bootstrap. While designing projects, we can create our own set of classes and styles by using Utility API (utility classes are generated using SASS- based tools)
Positioning By default, column supports position: relative It no longer supports position for column: relative by default
Bootstrap Icon It doesn’t provide icon for the bootstrap library. It gives its own icon library. Uses SVG icons
Jumbotron Supports Jumbotron is used here. Doesn't have a Jumbotron
Card Desks It provides a card deck (Used to create a grid of card with equal height and width). No longer supports card Decks as a grid in bootstrap 5 provides more responsive control.
form-row It provides form-row classes with the small gutter. Does not have form-row classes and supports by gutter classes.

Ten Reasons to Use Bootstrap 5 for UI Development

As shown in the comparison table above, many things have changed with Bootstrap 5 compared to Bootstrap 4. If you are considering moving your old projects from v4 to v5 or starting a whole new project with Bootstrap 5, here are the reasons to choose Bootstrap 5 for better UI development.

1. jQuery is no longer a dependency

When Bootstrap was first created in 2010, jQuery was the dominant framework and served as the backbone for Bootstrap. However, some developers didn't appreciate the forced dependency on jQuery and preferred to use Bootstrap with more modern frameworks like Vue.js and React.

Now, Bootstrap 5 has removed the dependency on jQuery, making it easier to use with different frameworks. However, certain components such as dropdowns, sliders, and popovers still require Poppers and its vanilla JavaScript module. If your project requires jQuery, you can still add it, but it's no longer necessary for Bootstrap to function properly.

2. CSS custom properties

Bootstrap 5 has introduced CSS custom properties, which offers an alternative to SASS variables for improving code reuse and organizing the Bootstrap codebase. These CSS variables can now also be accessed and manipulated in JavaScript, allowing for more flexibility in making changes to the CSS.

This new feature is a significant improvement over Bootstrap 4, which only offers root variables for color and font customization. With Bootstrap 5, components can use local variables to style elements, providing more fine-grained control over the appearance of the webpage.

For e.g

.styleDiv{Background-color: var(--bs-blue);font:2rem var(--bs-font-sans-serif);}

3. Color palette

Bootstrap 5 offers an expanded color palette. Unlike other CSS frameworks, Bootstrap 5 provides developers with a broad range of shades, including $blue-100, $blue-200, $blue-300, and so on, up to $blue-900.

With over 100 color options to choose from, developers have more flexibility in customizing the appearance of their projects without needing to make significant changes to the codebase. In addition, Bootstrap 5 also features improved color contrast and allows overriding of the default colors with their custom palette using the Color Shades Generator.

4. Updated form controls

Bootstrap 5 has updated form controls, providing a more streamlined and consistent experience for users. Unlike in Bootstrap 4, there is no longer a need for custom classes to style form controls. In Bootstrap 5, radio buttons and checkboxes are included by default.

The improved form controls in Bootstrap 5 offer several benefits, including better accessibility, ease of use, and a more modern look and feel. By eliminating the need for custom classes, developers can now create forms more quickly and with less code.

    // radio button with custom class Bootstrap 4 
    <div class="custom-radio-field">
        <input type="radio" class="custom-field" id="test" name="test-radio">
        <label class="custom-radio-label" for="customRadioButton">Custom radio</label>

    //Bootstrap 5 radio button
    <div class="form-check">
      <input class="form-check-input" type="radio" name=" test-radio " id="test">
      <label class="form-check-label" for="radio">Radio</label>

5. Responsive Font Size (RFS)

Bootstrap 5 offers a responsive font size feature that adjusts font sizes as the viewport size changes. This eliminates the need to write complex media queries and manually adjust font sizes for different screen sizes, making it easier to create responsive designs.

6. Smaller file size

Bootstrap 5 has a smaller file size compared to its previous versions. This means faster load times for your web pages and a better user experience for your visitors.

7. New utility classes

Bootstrap 5 comes with several new utility classes that allow you to add responsive spacing, colors, and typography to your web pages. These classes can easily save you a lot of time and effort when designing your UI.

8. Updated grid system

The grid system in Bootstrap 5 has been updated to be more flexible and customizable. You can now define custom grid breakpoints and adjust the number of columns per row to fit your design needs.

9. New components

Bootstrap 5 comes with several new components, including off-canvas navigation, toast notifications, and accordions. These components can save you a lot of time and effort when building complex UI elements.

10. Updated JavaScript plugins

Bootstrap 5 has updated its JavaScript plugins to be more modular and lightweight. This means faster load times for your web pages and a better user experience for your visitors.


Bootstrap 5 has also improved browser support to modern browsers such as Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and Edge. It has removed support for Internet Explorer to ensure that Bootstrap can leverage the latest web technologies and provide a smoother, more consistent experience for users.

It has also removed some old components that were no longer relevant or used in modern web development. This streamlines the framework and reduces its overall size, thereby, improving the load times and performance of web pages built with Bootstrap.

In conclusion, Bootstrap 5 brings a host of improvements that enhance its capabilities and make it more versatile and user-friendly for developers.

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About the Author

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Pratikasha Shinde

Senior Associate Engineer, Cloud ADM - Microsoft

Pratikasha is a Senior Associate Engineer who works as a UI developer in all front-end technologies. She has 3 years of experience in Front-end development and delivery. She has designed and developed UI work for multiple client projects with SharePoint, React JS and worked for internal projects (jCorpNet).

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