With 14 billion mobile devices used worldwide and with more than 4.4 million apps available on both the Appstore as well as Google Play, app development has become a profitable business.
If your business is currently looking at building an application, you’ll want to decide whether to build it using native or cross-platform development so you can design an app that efficient as well as cost-effective. You'll also want to establish the best solution for your app.
But how do you choose which to use? Deciding one or the other has long term implications when it comes to cost, time as well as functionality. In this article, we’ll explore which is the best option that will suit your app and development needs.
Native development refers to building an app specifically for a particular operating system. Apps built with native programming languages and tools are specific to a single platform.
Native applications are known for their great user experience due to their better performance and enhanced visuals that are tailored to the platform UX. However, what puts businesses off using native development is the high costs.
The code behind any kind of computer software is collectively known as a codebase and when you build natively, you're creating a single codebase for a single platform. Say iOS. Now, when you want to create an app for Android too, you can't use the original code because it was created with just iOS in mind so, you have to start a second one built natively for Android.
The benefits will be the same – better performance, feature availability and enhanced visuals, however, it'll be more costly because you have to pay for not just one codebase, but as many platforms you want supported.
That's the trade-off, greater development freedom and better performance for a longer, more expensive project.
Instead of having to build several codebases to support every device, mobile app cross-platform development means you can build your software using one codebase for every platform you want to support.
Cross-platform development is becoming the more modern solution as Google's Flutter and Facebook's React Native are gaining more popularity due to their efficiency when it comes to time and cost. Unfortunately, the cost is that you risk sacrificing the quality of your app in the process.
Lower performance is due to the difficulty of tailoring a single application to run optimally on various platforms resulting in the software needing an abstraction layer.
Native and cross-platform both have their pros and cons, so it's crucial to evaluate both approaches and consider the specific needs and goals of your app before making a decision. Both are two very different app development methods, so deciding which one best suits your business depends on your project's requirements and the skills of the developers involved.
Whereas native is still the best overall choice when it comes to creating the best user experience and overall performance, cross-platform apps are the most cost effective to build, but does mean that there could be a lack of quality in visuals and will require more effort to deliver an equal user experience.
If you're in the process of deciding what would work best for your app, our team can offer professional advice to best suit your needs.
Talk to one of our app experts today.