Native or Cross-Platform Application Development – which platform is right for your Mobile Application?

A few years ago, there was a definite perception that choosing cross-platform development posed certain risks and most organizations that required a mobile app benefited from developing one for a specific mobile platform.

Then, the common belief was that a cross-platform product was less user-friendly in terms of design, reliability, and more difficult to update. Gradually, as cross-platform development engines have evolved, this attitude has shifted.

‘Whether to go with native mobile app development or cross-platform app development?’ persists one of the most common and challenging subjects for an organization tapping the mobile app business.

Native Mobile Applications

Native mobile apps require one particular app to be created for one target platform. Native mobile apps are developed in iOS (Objective-c or Swift), Andriod (Java-Andriod) or Windows Phone (C#/Visual Basic and XAML).

Pros of developing a Native mobile app

  • Concedes utilizing advanced features, such as AI, ML, complex networking, memory management, etc.
  • There are no constraints in terms of app performance and speed.
  • It allows you to use all the features offered by the device and os.
  • Made with technologies supported and used by the device’s manufacturer.
  • There are no barriers in terms of user interface customization.
  • The native app development allows you to access native components of os and when used precisely the app’s user interface will modernize as the operating system got updated.

Cons of developing a Native mobile app

  • No code can be shared between various platforms of the app.
  • Development time can be affected if maintaining two or more separate platforms.
  • If supporting multiple platforms (i.e. iOS and Android or other), two or more separate apps will need to be created.
  • It will take more testing time, as two or more completely different codebases need to be tested.

Cross-platform Mobile Applications

Cross-platform mobile apps are developed utilizing an intermediary language, such as Javascript, that is not native to the device’s operating system. This determines that some or all of this code can be shared across targeted platforms – for instance, across both iOS and Android.

Pros of developing a cross-platform mobile app

  • The User Interface is rendered using ‘native’ components or controls, so User Interface performance can be as fast as native.
  • The code can be shared between the separate platforms for the app across devices.

Cons of developing a cross-platform app

  • To access some core functionality of os or devices we need to write some platform dependent code, which can not be shared between all supported platforms. So, it may possible to write some native code as per requirement.
  • Access to the device’s feature and operating system features depend on the framework or plugin support.
  • User interface customization is subject to the framework support
  • Speed can be affected, as some of the intermediate languages may need to be interpreted as and when required.

The above points might help you in decision making when using Native or Cross-Platform Application Development though there are many other things to consider which cannot be summarised in a post. Do get in touch with the Appsvolt team to get help in choosing the right platform for you.