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Native, Hybrid, and React Native App Development

Choosing a Mobile App Development Platform

When designing an app, there are a number of considerations to make, starting with the platform to employ. Choosing the appropriate platform may make or break the success of your product and eventually your entire company. To make this selection you have to factor in costs, timing, requirements, etc. With all of the available platforms and frameworks, it can be difficult to filter through the noise and find the best solution to fulfill your company needs. Looking for Hire iOS Developers for your business needs. Each application has its own set of needs and requirements which will eventually decide the optimal development decision. In this blog we’ll examine the merits of two popular smartphone platforms: Native and React Native. 

NATIVE VS. HYBRID

Before you can properly comprehend the distinctions between Native and React Native, let’s speak about the main two techniques of constructing apps: Native and Hybrid. In general terms, native apps are ones that are produced utilizing the “native” tools given by the app providers themselves: Apple and Google (iOS and Android) (iOS and Android). Apple has established the operating system for the iPhone and its other hardware goods, therefore it’s up to them to enable developers to create apps on their platform. To solve this they’ve invented a programming language called “Swift” (and Objective-C which we won’t explore here). Google, has designed the operating system for Android phones. They also provide a number of tools, namely creating apps in a programming language called “Java” (and now Kotlin) (also now Kotlin). To break this all down, Apple and Google both specify programming languages and tools (Swift and Java respectively) that allow you to access their whole operating system while allowing developers to build apps.

Swift and Java

That’s all well and good, but the issue is that Swift and Java are two whole different languages. What that means is that if you want an app on the App Store and Play Store, then you have to build two distinct applications! This can raise cost and complexity, thus developers established a different technique to design programs which can be summarized as: Hybrid apps. In general, a hybrid app is an app that you can develop in one language that can function on many platforms. This is generally done by leveraging web applications. Both Android and iOS phones have browsers which means they can handle web apps. Looking for hire iPhone app developer in London for your business needs. Google and Apple allow you to deploy apps where essentially you just wrap up a website and deliver it as an app. The most common hybrid systems include Cordova, Ionic, and other tools like React Native.

PROS AND CONS

While there are some advantages to a totally hybrid platform like Cordova and Ionic, there are also several limitations. Here are a few key positives and downsides.

PROS:

  1. Write once, deploy everywhere. With hybrid apps, you can utilize familiar web languages like javascript and have one code base that works for Android and iOS devices. This simplifies maintenance, upgrades, etc. as you simply have to deal with a single project.
  2. Web languages have less complexity. It’s often easier to locate web developers than native mobile developers. Most developers can work their way around CSS/HTML and javascript as those are relatively standard web tools. Using a hybrid strategy allows you to tap into that network and should simplify some of the learning curves and lower the barrier to entry.
  3. Cheaper. Due to both the plethora of web developers and the single code base, it’s often cheaper to design a hybrid software than a native application.

CONS:

User Experience

One of the greatest challenges with hybrid applications is the bad user experience. In today’s society, it is harder than ever to attract consumers to download an app and remain using it long-term. To compete with app heavy weights like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, you have to create an app that is simple to use and visually beautiful. A hybrid app is limited in what it can achieve. Because you’re utilising web components rather than native view components, everything from buttons to navigations to transitions will look and feel different.Users are able to observe these things. This could make the difference between mass and failure app adoption.

Performance

Another key to a strong user experience is performance. The mobile browsers are all quite quick, but, the hybrid platforms all carry extra weight by default. These apps are compelled to compile and convert the web functionalities and elements to the core native answers. By definition there is an intermediary layer that the apps must travel through. This over time can start to damage things like animations, reaction speeds, and overall app quality.

Feature set

Hybrid apps are limited in what they have access to. Browsers have limited access to the real native device hardware.Examples include video feeds, position tracking, Bluetooth, sensors, and so forth.If your app relies on native components such as navigation or camera feeds, a hybrid app is not going to be the smartest solution. Speed, access, capabilities, and support will all be more limited than with a native program.

WHAT IS REACT NATIVE

Alright, now we know a bit about native vs hybrid, but where does React Native come in? React Native (RN), designed by Facebook (and introduced around 2015) strives to give you the best of both worlds. While it’s technically a hybrid platform in that it can be built in one language (and works for both iOS and Android), it has numerous “native” capabilities. RN employs a javascript framework, React JS, to actually write the code in. However, it actually compiles into native views. This overcomes one of the greatest user experience challenges with classic web hybrid platforms like Ionic or Cordova. RN is not a responsive web app converted into a mobile app, instead it is a full native app with views that are local to each platform. It compiles the real app logic from javascript and allows you to write it in one spot. Think of it like building the frame of a Ferrari and Lamborghini individually, but dropping the same engine into each. It allows it to look and feel like different cars without having to create two separate engines.

RN does have a few disadvantages

Firstly, your access to native components still mainly depends on whether or not there is a native module for a specific component. Looking for Hire React Native Developers for your business needs.

WHICH SHOULD YOU CHOOSE?

So what is the best option? Native, Responsive web hybrid, React Native? The answer depends on what you’re trying to build. If you are a small restaurant in search of an app to display your menu, it doesn’t really make sense to pay the cost of supporting a native app.You will not require access to native hardware features, and your consumers will not demand intensive functionality. However, if you are a business that leverages google maps navigation, augmented reality, or if you are competing with instagram or snapchat on the trendiest camera filters, then a native app is probably your only genuine platform option. In a vast number of scenarios, React Native would solve the majority of important functionality.

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