In this blog, you will find a Native vs Cross-platform comparison. According to a report by Statista, 67% of app developers prefer native app development, while the rest prefer cross-platform app development. You may think that native app development is superior because most developers think so, but the truth is that you have to look at everything from the lens of a business owner.
There are around 4.4 million apps on both Google Play and Appstore. Most people make the most important decisions of their lives through mobile apps. That is why it has become more appealing for businesses to launch mobile apps. In 2020, people downloaded 247 billion apps around the world.
While the future for businesses with their apps is exciting, it is also competitive. You need to ensure that your app gets the downloads that will provide you with a stable revenue stream. Because of heavy competition, business owners rely on preciseness, smooth functioning, and other app parameters to convince customers to use their services.
You should constantly think about how to make your customers’ lives easy with your app. You can add the function in your app when you have an idea. This way, you can keep your customers satisfied, and they do not take their business elsewhere. You will face dilemmas over which approach to take in the app development phase.
Native Mobile App
Native apps are built for specific operating systems by using platform-specific programming languages. If the app is supposed to be used on specific devices with mobile app platforms such as Android or iOS, then you can move forward with native app development.
With this app development project, developers rely on programming languages that are native to the operating system of the device. Developers can use this app development method to craft apps for any digital device like smart tv, desktop, laptop, or smartphone.
Programmers use Java or Kotlin when they are developing native apps for Android. Objective C or Swift is used to develop apps for iOS. If you wish for your application to have a premium look and feel, then native app development is beneficial for you. With this method, you can utilize smartphone hardware like proximity sensors, cameras, microphones, GPS, and more. Since your programmers can access the device’s hardware, this means that they can add more features to the app.
Pros of Choosing Native App
Each app development method has a few benefits and a few downsides. To pick the right app development method, you must decide which benefits are important for you and which downsides you can ignore?
- High Speed- Native apps do not have complex code, so they perform with a greater speed. The app elements are easily preloaded in advance and displayed when the user wants to view them.
- Functional without the internet- One of the best features of native apps is that they can operate flawlessly without internet connectivity. That is why most of the time, apps that are critical for the user are designed this way. Google Maps is a native app. Even if the user is on a flight, they should be able to check the directions to their hotel.
- Minimum Bugs- In native app development, developers only have to deal with a single codebase. All their attention is fixed on that codebase, making them more attentive, productive, and better at finding bugs. When developers have to deal with cross-platform development, they use two codebases. This makes your app more vulnerable to bugs. If you want to release your app within schedule, then a native app is best for your business.
- Peak Performance- Native apps are developed for a specific OS, resulting in high performance. These apps are highly responsive and efficient.
Who is it suitable for?
If you are an entrepreneur and want to impress your first users with an intuitive, responsive, and fast app, then going with native app development is the best choice. Your business may specifically target one platform, so a native app is also the right choice.
Businesses that plan to launch 3D games or games with impressive animations should choose to develop a native app. If your app relies on the device a lot to function, then it is best to choose native app development.
Cons of Choosing Native App
- Extensive Resources Required- If you were to develop a separate native app for iOS and Android, it would require a lot of resources like workforce, money, and time. The code used to develop a native app cannot be reused to develop a native app for another OS. If you wish to launch your app on more than one OS, then cross-platform app development is better for you.
- Expensive Maintenance- The maintenance costs for native mobile apps exceed development costs. As a business owner, you must decide what is the most important for you. Providing the best experience or saving money where you can.
Cross-Platform Mobile App
Cross-Platform Frameworks build codes that developers can later reuse for a different operating system. Your developers can write code once and reuse it on multiple platforms. If saving costs and time is your priority, then Cross-Platform app development is the best option for your business.
Cross-Platform app development leads to easy implementation and affordable production. There are a limited number of obstacles for you before the launch of your app when you work with a cross-platform framework. A few examples of cross-platform frameworks are Ionic, React Native, Flutter, Xamarin, and NativeScript.
Pros of Choosing Cross-Platform App
- Speedy Development- Since your entire team of developers just has to work on a reusable source code, the app’s development will be quick. Your business can launch the app and gain user insights about how to improve it in the future.
- Easy Product Maintenance- Since there is only one codebase, it is easy to test for bugs and then fix the recognized issue.
- Cost Efficient- Cross-platform development helps you reach a larger market at a reduced cost. You can reach customers who use different devices; all you have to do is work on a single codebase. When your app works great in one market, you can then work on it to launch it on different systems. This helps you save money while creating multiple income streams for your business.
Who is it suitable for?
If your business has to launch your app as soon as possible and you have a limited budget. A small developer team can also benefit by using this framework, as they only have to develop the codebase once instead of working on more than one codebase for each different OS.
Targeting both Android and iOS together is beneficial for your business, as it helps you gain a large customer base at once. If you plan to launch your app on both these phone OS, you will benefit more from cross-platform development. This is the most suitable development mode if your app is not that complicated and does not require functionalities that differ between different platforms.
Cons of choosing a cross-platform app
- It is complicated to develop- Whenever you are about to add functionality to the app, you must consider the minor differences in the hardware and OS. While you have to do all the hard work once, it is rather complicated to develop a cross-platform app. When you are coding a native app, you just have to think about one OS. However, while coding a cross-platform app, you must think about different OS and develop accordingly. Your team of developers need to have a keen set of eyes to look for any errors before they happen.
- Can fall short on performance- If you have developed a cross-platform app, you cannot expect it to perform as efficiently as a native app.
- Unnecessary Complications- Developers struggle to integrate cross-platform apps into local settings, and the source code of HTML5 apps is complex because of callback-style programming.
Both Native and Cross-platforms apps have pros and cons of their own. However, one development model can be perfect for your business, and another can be unsuitable. To decide which framework suits your business, you must analyze your needs and then study the comparison. Once you have a good understanding of your business needs, you will be able to make a choice. IT business owners need to understand what they are trying to achieve from this app. When they know that, then everything will become more clear. You will have a clear picture of what your app should be like, and then you will know which development model is best suited for you. Think about the bigger picture before making a decision. Just because cross-platform app development is easy on the pocket does not mean it is right for your business. Think about the future of your app, your business, and where it will be in the next five years. After clearly listing all these factors, most business owners can decide which mode of app development they want to choose.
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