Historically, the Ionic Framework was a UI (User Interface) framework built on top of the Angular framework (which provides a lot of the behind the scenes logic/glue that makes an application work). Ionic provided a bunch of Angular components that could be used to easily create native style mobile interfaces, which meant that in order to use Ionic you also needed to use Angular.
However, Ionic components are now built using generic web components which can be used anywhere. This means that we no longer need Angular in order to build applications with Ionic’s components.
That doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t use Angular, though. There is a lot more to an application than just the user interface elements that we see on the screen, there is a lot of stuff that goes on behind the scenes, and Angular provides a lot of things out of the box to help us build a well-structured application.
Although it is possible to use Ionic by itself in a vanilla webpage, it is generally a good idea to use some kind of framework in conjunction with it. Angular is a fantastic choice in its own right, but it is also what Ionic developers have been using for years, and so naturally it is still what most developers choose to use today. We are not forced to use Angular, but there is better built-in integrations in Ionic for Angular, and there is a lot more community content and guidance available due to its popularity.
If you do not already have a preference for another framework, I would recommend that most people get started with Ionic & Angular. If you are new to Ionic, you should start with the generic Ionic tutorials:
A lot of the tutorials I write are for Ionic/Angular, so there is a lot of overlap between this category and the generic “Ionic” category. However, if you are only interested specifically in the Ionic/Angular tutorials you can find a full list of those below: