Google Play Store has around 2.8 million apps, while the App Store has 2.2 million apps.
The vast numbers tell us how the world of mobile app development is continuously progressing.
Each newly published app on both app stores is evidence of the evolution in the app development.
The upsurge in the development of mobile apps means that businesses around the world are looking to invest in the growing industry. The promise of increased user engagement, higher revenues, and worldwide brand recognition makes mobile apps an appealing prospect for all.
Mobile app development is not a simple process. It involves various factors that you need to consider before you contact app development companies.
Android or iOS, in-house or outsource/third-party, free or paid, ads or no ads, are some of the questions you need to answer. Additionally, you need to decide whether the app will be native or a hybrid.
The primary difference between the two types of applications is that hybrid apps are best for MVPs or limited-budget projects with limited timeframes. Native apps, however, are best when you need apps with custom features, speed, and reliability.
Pros and Cons of Native and Cross-Platform
Knowing what the hybrid and native apps are is not enough to make your decision when it comes to choosing the platform for mobile app development.
You need to know and understand the different pros and cons that accompany each type of platform. Some of the advantages and disadvantages of native and cross-platform are as follows:
Native Mobile App Development:
Native apps are the first to come to mind when you think of developing a new application. Here are some points to measure your decision:
These are some of the benefits that you will find with Native applications:
- Speed - Native apps are specific to the platform they are intended for, which increases their processing speed, and they work faster.
- Work offline - Native apps can function without a Wi-Fi or mobile network connection so that you can stay connected even underground without internet access.
- Recognizable look and feel - Apps that are similar to the other native applications on a mobile phone in functionality and overall look receive a more positive response from the user.
- Maintains Aspect Ratio - For native apps, it is easier to keep the aspect ratio of a smartphone screen no matter what the size of the device.
- Superior Performance - The native code provides the app to access the features of the host system’s OS. The convenient interaction increases the performance of the app in terms of graphics or multimedia content.
- Give full functionality - With convenient integration into the host’s OS, a native app has full access to all the device features.
- Better user interface - The flawless integration with the host’s OS also provides a better and familiar user interface. It improves user experience and increases repeated use.
- Easy to distribute - Monetization and distribution goals for the device manufacturer and app developer are more comfortable to accomplish with no barriers for access.
- Offer safety and security - App stores put native apps under a strict approval process for security and safety before they are available on Google Play or Android for the users.
- Documentation and Support - More documents and online texts are available for native iOS and Android app development than for hybrid apps.
- Testing - You’ll find more advanced debugging and testing tools for native apps.
There are two sides to one coin, so here are the drawbacks of Native apps:
- Lengthy Downloading Process - Approximately 20% of users lose interest in each stage of the app downloading funnel: Finding an app on the app stores Open App store pageview Installing Opening the app Sign-up
- No Flexibility - Native apps follow strict guidelines from the app stores, which leaves limited flexibility options.
- Expensive - The coding is complex, and expert developers scarce, which makes development costly.
- Time-consuming -You need separate codes for each platform, which increases development time.
- Frequent Upgrades - Users have the option to upgrade their apps, which most often leads to users abandoning the app altogether if they don’t want the updates.
- Need Experienced Developers - Native apps require the expertise of experienced developers than beginners. Plus, you are likely to need a different developer for each platform, iOS, or Android.
- Missed Opportunities - Native apps have limited reach in terms of audience. Focusing on one platform will lead to a reduced target market and missed opportunities.
- Difficult to Offer Support & Maintenance - Varying versions of the app are in use at one time, which makes it difficult to offer support and maintenance.
Cross-Platform/Hybrid App Development:
Native apps are not the only ones with both positives and negatives. You should consider the aspects of Cross-Platform too before you make your decision:
As there are pros to native apps, there are benefits for hybrid applications also:
- Faster Development - Cross-Platform apps function with a “write once and launch everywhere” ideology. Using one code for all platforms cuts the time for development.
- Lower costs - One codebase also leads to lower production costs for the entire project.
- Easy and fast deployment
With one code base, the initial launch is more rapid.
- Wider audience - Cross-platform can target the audience for Android, iOS, and Windows simultaneously.
- Maintenance - The one code base makes it convenient for developers to update and maintain the hybrid app.
- Simplicity - Provide upgrades for all platforms and fix bugs without hassle.
- Consistent Design - Cross-platform apps are compatible with the design. It helps developers design different applications for different platforms with complete sync between two different hybrid apps.
Here are some of the disadvantages you will see with cross-platform apps:
- Performance Glitches - Integration difficulties with the host OS lead to performance glitches within the hybrid app.
- User Experience Issues - The inability to make use of native-only features limits the user-experience of a hybrid app.
- The limitation with Native Features - You cannot use features specific to one platform for hybrid apps.
- Restriction in Design - Different OS have different design guidelines. Designers need to build cross-platform that comply with all regulation that may lead to new challenges.
- Connection Limitations - Hybrid apps cannot function without the internet.
- Sluggish Code Running - Too much cross-compliance during the development of hybrid apps leads to slow performance, freezing, or lagging of the app.
Choose Your Platform!
Both cross-platform and native applications have their pros and cons. Your decision for the mobile app platform should depend on factors such as audience, cost, complexity, and the features you want in the app.
So, are you ready to make your decision?