As per Statistsa, there are over 5.70 million mobile apps on Google Play and App Store, targeting billions of mobile phones across the world.
Since people make the most important decisions of their personal and professional lives over the Internet and mobile apps, it is impossible for businesses to ignore mobile apps in the competitive digital landscape.
If you are also planning to launch a mobile app, one of the most crucial decisions is to choose the mobile development framework. This post will provide a review of both the native apps as well as the cross-platform apps to help you choose the right stack for your business.
What is a Native App?
Native apps are developed for a specific platform or device while utilizing a native operating system programming language. They offer a great user experience and consistent performance in terms of the look and feel of the application.
When native is used, separate code bases need to be written for both iOS and Android platforms. Developers write iOS applications in Objective-C or Swift and Android-native apps in Java or Kotlin. Some of the most popular native apps include Spotify, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Google Maps.
Benefits of Native Apps
- High Performance: These applications are very fast and responsive because the elements are preloaded in the framework. For the same reason, it displays the content quickly and enhances the overall efficiency of the application.
- Offline functionality: Native apps can work offline without any API functionality. This makes it convenient to access the mobile app on the go in case of limited availability of data or poor connection.
- Interactive and intuitive: Native apps align perfectly with the configuration of the platform. It also enables the app to use gestures to provide an intuitive experience.
- Maintain Aspect ratios: It is the ratio of width to height of different screens. While many apps don’t function well upon changing the device’s size and shape, Native apps solve this issue by taking care of orientation and size of the app.
When to choose native app development?
It is best to adopt Native app development when you wish to deliver a high-quality user experience in terms of the appearance and feel of the application. Native can also be used when the app has numerous complex feature offerings and is looking to leverage device-specific features like GPS, camera etc.
Tech stack used
Native Android Apps:
- Tools: Android IDE, Android Studio, IntelliJ IDEA
- Languages: Java, Kotlin
Native iOS Apps:
- Tools: AppCode, XCode
- Languages: Objective-C, Swift
What is a cross-platform app?
A cross-platform app is compatible with various operating systems and platforms (Android, iOS, Windows) as it is based on the share ability of the code. It means that the developers need to write the code only once and then reuse it for multiple platforms.
As a result, these apps allow cost-effective development and suit businesses with limited budgets and time best. Some of the most popular cross-platform apps include Instagram, Skype, Coinbase, Facebook Ads Manager, and Slack.
Benefits of cross-platform apps
- Reusable code: The developers can utilize a common code base and transfer it to different platforms for development.
- Quick development: The app development gets hassle-free and quick while enhancing the efficiency of the app development lifecycle.
- Reduced cost: Lesser upfront expenses as compared to the native app development framework. There is no need to hire different teams to develop Android and iOS apps separately.
- Easy to maintain: Since the codebase is common, it is easier to test, upgrade, and maintain the code to maintain the overall quality of the app and ensure efficient performance.
When to choose cross-platform app development?
When you need a unified mobile app that works perfectly across different platforms, a cross-platform app is the best choice. You can target both Android and iOS users, with limited resources. This development framework can also be used when the app is simple and does not have many complexities and features that vary across platforms.
Tech stack used
- React Native
Native vs. Cross-platform app development
What is best for Business?
It is difficult to get a universal answer while choosing between native and cross-platform apps. Irrespective of the business or industry you are in, you need to invest in mobile app development that suits the best the nature of your business.
Native apps are the best choice if you want to upscale performance and user experience by adding device-specific functionalities. But the cost of development is relatively high as compared to cross platform apps. We advise you to go for Native if you are planning to build IoT, AI, Healthcare, Banking & Finance, Marketplace, or Gaming apps. It is also advisable to use Native if you want to gain the following and trust of new customers by presenting them with the best of user experience.
On the other hand, cross-platform apps are quick and easy to build but they may not deliver a high level of user experience when compared with native apps. Hence, these kinds of apps will be suitable for startups who want to quickly test the idea of their product within various platforms and that too in less time and budget.
In the debate of native vs cross-platform apps, both the options have their pros and cons. So, the best idea is to figure out your business needs in the first place and explore a suitable development platform that can cater to all the listed requirements.
If you need to discuss the best choice of mobile development framework, get expert advice now.