Compose Counting Grid

A simple application to check Compose for Desktop and Compose for Web (Canvas) drawing speeds when drawing grids (or tables) with larger numbers of cells.

Implementation differences:

  • The desktop application uses a window-sized canvas. Compose scrollbars appear if necessary.
  • The web application uses a content-sized (window) canvas. The browser’s scrollbars appear if necessary.

Initial Scene

Initial Scene

Desktop with Recomposition Highlighting

Desktop with Highlighting

Desktop High-Frequency Update (Top Row Only)

  • This animated GIF ⚠️ not suitable for people with photosensitive epilepsy ⚠️ demonstrates increasing FPS as the window shrinks: Animation with high-frequency updates.

    This effect appears with the desktop application, not the web application.

How It Operates

Given a grid of cells: Choose a random cell. Increase its single-digit count. Repeat.

Unless pausing is enabled, updates will be drawn as fast as possible. The desktop application will even go beyond your display’s vsync frequency (which Compose/Skia normally would not do, as it makes no sense other than to check the speed).

How To Build And Run

JVM desktop application: ./gradlew run

Browser application: ./gradlew frontendJsBrowserProductionRun (requires some patience for bundles to load)

Currently, frontendJsBrowserDevelopmentRun cannot be used as the development bundle does not build.

What To Try

  • Try everything without animations first.
  • Resize the window so that only the top row of counters is visible.
  • Highlight re-compositions.
  • Toggle “Force top-level recomposition”.


  • This application does not simulate any real-world scenario as it uses a very simple layout with fixed-size cells.
  • Compose for Web on Canvas is at an experimental stage. This application uses funky tricks to fit the canvas to its content size.



  • Larger grids are slower.
  • Grids with fewer cells containing text are faster (choose top-row updates only, then clear the grid).

    Note that empty cells don’t have a Text component.

  • Grids with more cells scrolled out of view (applies to desktop only) are faster.
  • Layout and recomposition accounts for about 10% of total performance (try forcing top-level recompositions, check the profiler’s flame graph), so redrawing dominates performance.


  • Currently, it appears that the entire (window) canvas is redrawn on every frame. Once JetBrains/skiko#53 is fixed and only updated parts are redrawn, expect significant performance increases.
  • Drawing time increases with the number of visible layout nodes.
  • Still, Compose for Desktop seems pretty fast.
  • Compose for Web/Canvas is significantly slower than desktop (I have seen roughly a factor of 3), but it would also use just 10% for layout and recomposition. Depending on the use case, even at this early stage Web/Canvas could still be fast enough.


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