Mobile Software Development, What To Choose?

March 1, 2021

Mobile apps now play a vital role in everybody’s life. Whether you are an Android user or an iOS fan, essential apps are installed on your phone ready for utilization. As a software company, what do you think is the best built of apps for mobile devices you can produce?

In this article, let us give you an overview of the three different types of mobile applications. So, brace yourself and be ready to learn.

Types of Mobile Apps by Technology

Non-disclosed to the general public, there are three types of mobile apps being rolled out to the tech world.

  • Native apps. These applications are designed specifically for a certain operating system (OS). They leverage the built-in SDK provided by the OS.
  • Progressive Web Apps (PWA). To put it simply, these are apps running as an application on the phone, but are actually leveraging renderer of the browser.
  • Hybrid apps. These applications are installed on a mobile device as a native application, but are using development technologies that can be easily deployed on several Mobile OS.

We will be discussing the differences between these three. If you are planning to build an app, we will help you decide which one of these types of technology is suitable for you. Keep on reading.

Each Type of Mobile App Builders – Explained

As mentioned in the preceding paragraph, we will differentiate the three types of mobile app builders, the language used for the coding and programming, including their cons and pros. Let us see.

Whether you are an Android user or an iOS fan, essential apps are installed on your phone ready for utilization.

Native Apps

Two mobile phone operating systems dominate the competition in the mobile industry. These are the Apple iOS and the Android OS. These operating systems differ in many ways. 

Native apps refer to applications that are native to an operating system. For example, a mobile app installed to an Apple iOS cannot be installed on an Android OS and vice versa. Each operating system requires a new set of codes to read the commands from the programming of a mobile app. To put it simply, you cannot mix and match these programming codes.

Pros

  1. Since these apps are native to an operating system (OS), they can give an optimum performance – fast, no lags, and reliable.
  2. Because native apps are utilizing the UI of the operating system where it is installed, the user experience improves. They are usually more efficient as compared to other types of mobile software apps.
  3. Native apps are more secure. Unlike most web apps, native apps created for a particular operating system are more secure. This can be because programmers can fully own the system without reservations.

Cons

  1. Since native apps are programmed for a particular operating system, additional efforts are needed to create a different version compatible with the other operating system. Apps created for Android cannot be used in an Apple iOS.
  2. Production costs increase due to the duplication of efforts.

Progressive Web Apps (PWA)

Progressive Web Apps (PWA) are web-based applications. This factor makes PWA installable, capable, and accessible to all platforms – Apple iOS and Android OS. Indeed, wherever you are and whatever device you have, PWA is always at your fingertips.

Pros

  1. Since PWAs are web-based, they reduce the size of an app significantly. For example, the social media giant Twitter formulated a web-based version of its application. They have seen a 97% reduction in the size of the application compared to native apps being installed on specific operating systems.
  2. Reduction in the development costs. Since there is no need to code for a specific operating system, you can be able to save thousands of dollars in creating Progressive Web Apps.

Cons

  1. PWAs are dependent on the browser. A different browser may offer some functionalities that other browsers don’t.
  2. Since they are web-based, a connection lost to the internet will not make them work efficiently.
  3. At times, web apps might not display well depending on the device’s hardware.

Hybrid Apps

Hybrid apps are not different from web apps. Just one thing: these apps are made to appear like native apps. It is a mixture of both types of mobile software app builders. One amazing thing is that it can function even without the internet but still these are web apps. Their functionality can be limited to the availability of the internet.

Pros

  1. Hybrid apps are easier to build compared to native apps. Furthermore, it is also more economical.
  2. They load faster and use minimal data. This makes hybrid apps functional in areas with slow internet.
  3. Lastly, since it is not using complicated codes, maintenance is practical and efficient.

Cons

  1. Unlike native apps, hybrid apps do not function as fast and sleek as native apps.

Hybrid apps are not different from web apps. Just one thing: these apps are made to appear like native apps. It is a mixture of both types of mobile software app builders. One amazing thing is that it can function even without the internet but still these are web apps.

The Wrap Up – What To Choose?

The development of apps can be challenging particularly that you have to create separate mobile software apps for each Apple iOS and Android OS. When you produce a mobile app, you have to saturate the market. Does it mean that you have to develop apps in three different types? Yes, and when we say three, these are the native apps, web apps, and hybrid apps.

We have millions of users of all these types of apps and you cannot compromise each one of them. To develop a particular app, you might need to hire iOS and Android development teams. These teams will work particularly on their focused operating system.

Yes, it is expensive. But, that is how business works. The developers you hire must be experts of the following programming languages: Java, Kotlin, Python, Swift, Objective-C, C++, React, Javascript, Ruby, 

On the other side, if time and money are an issue, hybrid apps and web apps are the best option for you. Native apps, as mentioned, can cost more than these two types of app development is worth.

In this article, we have learned the differences between these three types of app development. Native apps are specific-platform apps while hybrid and progressive web apps are web-based and coded differently. Native apps are the most preferred since they are faster and can work well for the user.

To conclude, make sure to choose the most suitable app development for your project. Consulting with a software development outsourcing agency can be of great help for your project.

About the author: Allan Diel Caranguian - Writer

Allan is a talented content writer from all the way up north of the Philippines (Cagayan Valley). Being several hours apart from Manila on bumpy buses, he's been working online most of his life. Hardship, self-learning, focus lead him to serve many different kinds of businesses, all on the internet. Hope you enjoyed our article. View on Linkedin

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