What You Need to Know About Native Mobile App Development

September 21, 2023

In the mobile app development industry, the advent of 5G connectivity will not only transform user experiences but also unlock exciting opportunities for native app development. These fresh possibilities will empower tech-driven enterprises, e-commerce businesses, and developers to step up their game in building apps.

The adoption of 5G-enabled use cases will also revolutionize how we live. For example, future farms will have greenhouse automation, smart manufacturing will include remote monitoring and sensors, and future clinics will predict patient outcomes.

As the country that ranked 3rd in terms of 5G connected devices per capita, Australia could bring significant economic benefits. This could mean an additional $27 million in productivity benefits to the Australian economy by 2030!

So, if you’re a business owner, now is the perfect time to invest in native mobile apps and take advantage of the 5G revolution! By the end of this blog post, you’ll have all the knowledge you need about native mobile app development.

Let’s dive in!

What is a native app?

A native app is like a software application that’s custom-made for a specific platform or operating system. You can download it and have it on your device, and it works as its own program. Plus, it uses different features of your device to get things done.

For instance, your PC laptop may come equipped with applications such as an audiobook library or media players that function seamlessly both online and offline. Even though certain products or programs can be accessed as web apps, native apps are not mere replicas of their corresponding websites. They require independent development.

StarTechUP Native Mobile App Development Services

But typically, when we mention native apps, we’re referring to native mobile apps. These are the apps that have been custom-made and meticulously crafted for specific device platforms like iOS or Android. These two operating systems dominate the market, accounting for over 99% of operating systems worldwide as of 2023.

With a large market share, native mobile apps are the go-to choice for businesses that want to build their presence in the digital world.

The pros of native app development

Developing native mobile applications is like creating tailor-made suits. They not only look impeccable but also fit the user perfectly, leaving no room for lags or glitches.

While it sounds time-consuming and expensive to develop native mobile apps, its benefits are worth investing time and money in the long run.

Enhanced performance

Native apps have a distinct edge when it comes to response times and processing speed. Why? Because they are tailor-made for a specific operating system (OS). This inherent advantage ensures a seamless user experience that’s both lightning-fast and efficient.

Apps designed for a specific platform seamlessly integrate with the device’s hardware, leveraging OS resources to deliver optimal performance. This deep integration enables faster performance and quicker response times, making them ideal for performance-centric apps like games and graphic-heavy applications.

Consistent style and feel

In native app development, utilizing native SDKs (software development kits) ensures that the user interfaces maintain consistency with their respective platforms. This seamless integration between the app design and operating system enhances the overall user experience by eliminating any discrepancies.

The consistency of native apps also offers a wonderfully intuitive and interactive user experience. People feel right at home with the familiar layouts of their operating system, making your application instantly relatable and user-friendly.

Higher security level

According to the survey of ACMA, Australians prioritize strong security features in apps that handle their personal data. 36.5% of respondents believe that mobile banking apps should have the highest level of security, while 15.9% think the same for eWallets, money transfers, and payment apps.

Native applications have the upper hand when it comes to security since they leverage the built-in security protocols of the operating systems. Unlike a hybrid app, native apps are tailored for a specific platform. This means that data encryption takes place within a single infrastructure, minimizing security risks. This is particularly crucial if your app deals with sensitive user information.

Greater engagement

Whether you develop a native app for iOS or Android, they tap into the core features of your device—the accelerometer, GPS, camera, speakers, and microphone. This means they can deliver an interactive experience for every user.

The ease of access and notification capabilities of native apps result in higher engagement rates. With the help of push notifications, users are updated with real-time information that keeps them engaged.

native apps are discoverable in app stores quote

Easily searchable in app stores

Many factors collectively contribute to the discoverability of native apps in app stores, and developers have full control over them. These include app store optimization (ASO) and the choice of keywords and visuals for the application’s listing page.

Native apps have a higher chance of being discoverable in app stores due to their optimized user interfaces and higher download speeds. As long as you follow the guidelines of your chosen native platform, you have more flexibility and control when it comes to app store visibility.

The cons of native app development

Despite their numerous benefits, native mobile app development comes with its own set of challenges. If you decide to go the native route, you need to be aware of the potential pitfalls and plan for how you’ll address them.

Below are some of the most common cons associated with native mobile app development.

Longer development time

Developing code for multiple platforms takes more time because you have to write and maintain separate code for each platform. Your developers need to consider the unique specifications and requirements of each platform, making sure everything works well together. And don’t forget, thorough testing and debugging across multiple platforms can also add to the development time.

By having dedicated teams working on both iOS and Android apps simultaneously, you can conquer the time constraints that come with native app development. This approach unlocks the power of parallel development, leading to accelerated timelines and a smoother journey towards success!

Costly affair

Here’s the hard truth: the longer it takes to develop, the more it’s going to cost you. And when it comes to mobile app development for different platforms, the time and budget can quickly get out of hand. If you’re thinking of hiring specialized development teams for each platform, well, be prepared for even higher costs.

But here’s some good news! While native applications may initially cost more than other app solutions, they often provide a better return on investment (ROI) in the long run. This is why you need product ideation to help you create the most effective solutions for your target audience.

Not every user can access it

One of the downsides of developing native applications is their limited accessibility and reduced customer reach. You might be familiar with the frustration of wanting to download an app that’s only available on the iOS or Android operating systems.

This is a pretty common situation. A lot of software development companies don’t have the resources to build an app for both Android and iOS platforms, or they can’t release it on all platforms simultaneously.

As a result, not only do potential app users feel let down, but the company also misses out on a unique marketing opportunity that arises only when every smartphone user can access the app in question.

The solution we can offer is cross-platform development!

Native apps vs. Cross-platform apps

If native apps are built for one OS, a cross-platform app can be used on different operating systems and devices. This kind of app is built using web technologies like HTML, CSS, JavaScript, etc., which lets you create a single codebase that can be deployed on more than one platform.

Native mobile apps offer superior user experience and performance, albeit at a higher cost. With lower defect rates and enhanced visuals, they provide a seamless experience. On the other hand, cross-platform app development is quick and easy, but achieving an equivalent user experience across platforms requires more effort.

If you choose the latter, consider investing in cross-platform tools, such as Back4App, Firebase, React Native, or Xamarin.

Native apps vs. Hybrid apps

If a native app is a tailored suit, hybrid apps are like a versatile outfit that works on any OS, sharing the same codebase. So, if you’re into custom-made apps, be ready for your developers to write separate code for both iOS and Android platforms.

Hybrid app development is easier and more cost-effective, but there might be some lag and compatibility issues. On the other hand, a native mobile app provides better performance and utilizes native device features, but it requires separate development for each platform.

Ultimately, the decision between native and hybrid apps depends on development resources, performance needs, and target audience.

Native apps vs. Web apps

A native app resides on mobile devices, whereas a web app is accessed via a web browser. Native apps are designed for specific platforms like iOS or Android, while web apps run in browsers and are accessed online.

Both are great tools for delivering software applications to users. Web apps are super easy to develop and maintain, plus you can access them from any device. The best part? No app store takes a commission, making it easier to market and extend.

The only time a native app is a better choice than a web app is when the hardware and native features of the device are crucial for the app to work. So, if you’re searching for a better user experience, native development might be just the right choice for you.

pokemon go on android

Examples of native mobile apps

Now that you have a better understanding of what makes a native app let’s take a closer look at some of the most successful native mobile applications out there.

Pokémon GO

Pokémon Go is an awesome Augmented Reality (AR) mobile game that won the App Store’s breakout hit of 2016! It’s super cool because it turns the real world into a game map and lets you be the controller. You can catch, train, and battle virtual Pokémon, just like how Generation Y and Z watched Pokémon trainers on Toonami.

The features it uses from your mobile device are:

  • GPS
  • Camera
  • Accelerometer
  • Gyroscope

Waze

Waze is a popular GPS navigation app for mobile devices. It offers turn-by-turn information, route details, and user-submitted travel times. With positive feedback from drivers worldwide, Waze is a must-have native app that is free to download and use.

The features it uses from your mobile device are:

  • GPS
  • Camera
  • Accelerometer
  • Compass

Spotify

Spotify, a popular native and cross-platform, is a must-have for music lovers. This digital music service offers access to thousands of songs and podcasts from record labels and media companies worldwide. It’s also a prominent example of a cloud-native application leveraging Google Cloud for improved performance and user experience.

The features it uses from your mobile device are:

  • WiFi
  • Microphone
  • Bluetooth
man in front of a white board

Should you build a native mobile app in 2023?

2023 is a great year to develop mobile apps. With new technologies like augmented reality, voice recognition, and facial recognition, you can create truly one-of-a-kind experiences that you won’t find on desktop or mobile web apps.

At StarTechUP, we’ve been bringing mobile application development services for businesses for several years now. From healthcare to retail and lifestyle, our team of experts has the knowledge and experience needed to help you launch your app on mobile platforms!

If you want to gain a competitive edge in your industry, contact us today to learn more about how native mobile app development can help you!

About the author: Andrea Jacinto - Content Writer

A content writer with a strong SEO background, Andrea has been working with digital marketers from different fields to create optimized articles which are informative, digestible, and fun to read. Now, she's writing for StarTechUP to deliver the latest developments in tech to readers around the world. View on Linkedin

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