Native vs Web vs Hybrid Apps: A Closer Look

As the technology is evolving, the mobile application development world is growing more complex.

As the technology is evolving, the development world is growing more complex. With so many options available for development it is quite difficult for a non technical person to find out the right path. In order to find the right technology you need to draft certain parameters to choose the technology. Sounds quite simple though but it is not the way it appears to be.

The moment you will enter into development or go on to hire a mobile application development company the very moment you will realize that the importance of getting acquainted with the technology. In this blog we will discuss about the most discussed topics of the technical town : native vs hybrid vs web apps?

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All this confusion is a because of the fragmentation in the platform.

Android, iOS , Windows and Blackberry are the four major dominant platforms we have in the technical town. Making a choice in the platform was the toughest decision to make for business owners. If one goes on for choosing Android they are going to miss the users using Apple or other phones. This is because each of the platforms do not support applications built for any other native platform. Thus, this resulted in the development of Hybrid apps. Let us discuss the pros and cons of choosing each of them in detail.

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Native Apps

Native apps are the apps which are built for a respective app development environment and they are not supported by any other mobile operating system. You can download them by their respective play store and they function just by tapping on their image icon.

Their coding environment is responsible for not supporting applications on any other platform, for example the Iphone app development are coded in Objective-C wherein the Android apps are in Java. Further, each mobile platform have their own Standard development tool kit, development tools and elements for interface.

Pros:

  1. Native apps provide the fastest, reliable and responsive experience to its users.
  2. Native apps can get access to wider functionalities of a mobile device. Which implies when you design a native app you can make use of the camera, compass, microphone and other features of the mobile devices very easily.
  3. App publishers can easily get the users attention when required and thus user engagement becomes easy for native app users. You can use push notifications and draw users attention whenever you want disseminate a new update. With this you have the capability of keeping the interest of the audience alive.

Cons:

  1. The major pitfall of native apps is that they do not run on any other platform apart from their parent platform. An iOS app which is developed in Objective-C won't function in Android unless it is completely rewritten in Java. Thus, if you choose for building a native app you have to either hire experienced developers for each of the platform or you have to neglect other platforms.

  2. Building and then maintaining different versions of you app requires a lot of budget. So, if you have a lofty budget do go for native apps as they offer the best services and better user experience when compared with other contemporary technology.

  3. Development Cost: According to current industry standards a professional app development company charges $30,000 to $55,000 for developing a custom native mobile application development from the scratch. And with every single platform the cost will be multiplied.

Mobile optimized Web Apps

Pros: If you think that native apps are beyond your budget they you can go for mobile optimized web apps. Mobile version of any site are known as the web apps which can even function well on smartphones which are of small screen size. These apps load properly on mobile versions of browsers like Safari and Chrome and unlike native apps users you do not have to install a web app and they also do not capture any space in the phone's memory.

Cons:

  1. Features of a web apps are constrained and they always require an Internet connection to work.
  2. It is difficult to build a loyal fan base for web apps until the users get intrigued by your app and bookmark it on the browser. Unlike native apps you cannot send push messages for engaging them.

  3. Another major drawback of these apps are that they do not feature on the app stores and thus a major source of user traffic is what these apps miss as these app stores get millions of searches and downloads.

Hybrid apps

Hybrid apps as the name suggest is the combination of the native and web apps. Thus, they use the best of both the worlds and somewhere or the other have an edge in the competition.

Phonegap/Cordova and Appcelerator Titanium are the two famous platforms for building hybrid apps. Using them you can create local files in Javascript /CSS/HTML and use them to build apps as a website. Then you can use tools such as Cordova to wrap it to give a mobile application development look.

Pros: 1. Cheaper than native apps 2. Built on cross-platforms such as CSS, JavaScript and HTML5 , thus are compatible to all the web technologies 3. Use of a little native code adds utilization of wider device functionalities and platform accessibility. 4. It is easy and faster to develop when compared with native apps. 5. Hassle of maintaining different platforms do not exists.

Cons: As nothing is ideal, these hybrid apps also come with some disadvantages.

  1. Though these apps work each platform but making them run properly run on each platform requires a lot of strenuous efforts. Moreover, at times the total cost of this exceeds the development cost of a native app. Though, this cost also depends on your need of delivering a rich user experience.
  2. Performance of these apps is certainly lower than the native apps.

Breaking the dilemma: So, finally after analyzing all the contenders we now have confusion between the two. Native apps and hybrid apps have tough competition and thus choosing between the two is a dilemma. In order to break this I have summarized the features below.

We know that there is nothing called as tailor made technology in this turbulently changing technical world. For this you need to choose the one which is the best fit for your business as well as your budget. For further queries feel free to write us and we will be gald to help.