Mobile applications are dynamic business tools. Today, they are the standard to connect with customers for their day to day needs like banking, grocery shopping, car sharing, etc.
Mobile applications provide the convenience, and prompt experience which users seek. With constant innovation, businesses now depend on apps than ever before. Hence, mobile app development shall be on the rise.
Hybrid vs. Native App: A Quick Overview
Native app development involves the mobile OS – Java for Android and Swift or Objective-C for iOS.
The app is developed in a secure ecosystem adhering to all the technical expertise and guidelines of user experience of the respective OS. It ensures faster performance and a better experience.
Here, experience means the consistent appearance and feel with other native apps on that device. As a result, the end-user may learn how to use the app and navigate much faster.
Besides, native applications also have certain advantages. It is easy to access and leverage the capabilities of the device, such as address book, GPS, camera, etc. Native apps are native to the OS. Hence, these are built as per guidelines.
Contrarily, hybrid app development is focused on the website. Although they may appear like an ordinary native app, the source is a company’s website.
Hybrid vs. Native App: Development Timeline
When an organization undertakes mobile app development, they want to be a part of the competition, or they might have come across a business opportunity.
Regardless of the reason, executives want to release the app at the earliest.
However, anything done in haste might lead to compromises. Both native and hybrid app development approaches can be used for app development, but it is important to understand the process and assess the situation.
In a scenario where a company can wait for a few months to build and launch an app, the native app development approach is ideal. Undoubtedly, native android apps and native iOS apps have excellent performance and offer the highest security. Moreover, they provide the best experience.
In another scenario wherein a company has to launch and deploy almost immediately, the hybrid development is the better option. Hybrid apps are built directly in one source code and released across multiple platforms. It also takes comparatively lesser time and effort to develop hybrid apps.
But mind you! Users also expect a fabulous experience and are oblivious to the process you choose. When they open your app, they expect it to be responsive and intuitive. They don’t care if it is native or hybrid.
Overall, the app performance and user experience vary significantly depending on the development framework. In this regard, the native app development approach is an uncontested winner.
App Performance Is the Top Priority
When it comes to performance, nothing matches up to the native apps.
Native apps are well designed and relatively faster. As you navigate an app, its content, visual elements, and the structure are already present on the phone, available for loading. Thus, you get a seamless experience.
On the contrary, only the wrapper of a hybrid app is downloaded to the phone, which may or may not include the crucial navigational elements. Most of the data is loaded directly from the server
However, two issues may affect the performance of an app: server requests (number of people calling the same server at once) and load balance requests (from where are the requests coming and if there is a designated server).
Experts opine that despite everything, hybrid applications lag in performance. 96% of users consider performance as a crucial factor.
User Experience: The Crucial Factor in the Hybrid vs Native App Debate
The key to a successful application is user experience.
Today, mobile app development is mainly about user experience, unlike in the past. The key is to come up with an app that does not seem like a new app. Anything that seems difficult can be frustrating.
Remember, users have struggled to adapt to their phones. Now that they can handle their devices, the last thing they expect is an uncanny app with unrealistic features. They expect the applications, gestures, interactions, and visual clues to be impeccably integrated with the platform’s style guide.
Mobile app user experience is so important that customers would have a negative reaction to an app. Some users may hardly use the app again. Some other users may switch to another mobile app and give a poor rating.
This is crucial information to understand the trade-off of user experience when you are to choose between hybrid vs. native apps.
Native apps are OS-specific. As an organization starts building a new app, the specific user experience for that particular app becomes crucial.
While releasing a hybrid app, the platform should be agnostic. Single UI, single code base, and easier to develop – hence, it takes lesser time to hit the market.
User experience is the only tradeoff. Even an extraordinary user experience architect may fail to build a mobile app catering to the two dominant OS – Android and iOS. Both the OS have different style guidelines for tactical factors.
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Impacts of App Updates on Hybrid vs. Native App Development Strategies
A critical factor is the frequency with which the developers want things to move to the production stage. It affects how you are doing it and whether or not users have to take any action to see those improvements.
With hybrid applications, users do not need to update the apps in their app store. As users navigate through the app, they would instantly see updates. However, in the case of native apps, users have to update the apps to see any changes. On this front the Hybrid app has an upper hand over Native app development.
Both native and hybrid app development has its pros and cons. However, the native approach has more benefits for the company.
However, hybrid apps have a major detraction – the company would end up spending more time tweaking and fixing the app owing to user complaints about the elements of UI or issues related to the performance of the app.
Contrarily, native app functions are specific to their OS. Likewise, the native development approach offers better security for mobile applications, highly responsive user interface, best performance, and access to native APIs.
Concisely, even though the initial investment is higher, but businesses can save money and time with native apps. Besides, it also offers brilliant performance and user experience. You can partner with a professional mobile app development services provider like Radixweb to help you choose the optimum business solution. We have unparalleled capabilities in developing secure and robust mobile apps. Let’s discuss your development requirements.