12 min read
It’s the programming language that defines the difference between the original internet pages, which scroll through static information, and modern pages with interactive menus, animated graphics, embedded videos, maps, automatic updates, and more.
Table of Contents
- Native vs Hybrid Mobile Apps
- What is a Native App?
- What is a Hybrid App?
- An Alternative to Native and Hybrid Apps
- Increase Your Audience
- Improve Your Interface
- Integrate with App Stores
- Take Advantage of Notifications
- Save Time and Resources
- Utilize Wrapper Views
- How to Choose the Best Framework for Your Brand
- Trending Technologies in Mobile App Development
It allows content to be updated automatically.
Photo Credit: fossbytes.com
Its flexibility enables both frontend and backend development, allowing developers to build comprehensive applications with a single programming language.
The language also offers cost-efficient and scalable solutions, making it a great choice for businesses looking to make a solid impression in the mobile app market.
Chapter #2: Native vs Hybrid Mobile Apps
Whichever you choose to develop, the choice will define the tools you need to give your app purpose.
Photo Credit: slideteam.net
2.1 What is a Native App?
Native apps only function on mobile for the operating system they were designed for.
The programming languages that native apps are built from will only load the application’s unique functions on the intended devices.
Native apps are faster due to their tailored designs. They’re also more reliable because they don’t not usually have to be designed for cross-platform uses.
If a cross-platform app is your business’s goal, choose a framework that will make it as easy as possible for your developers to convert multiple coding languages and structures into one application.
2.2 What is a Hybrid App?
In contrast to Native apps, Hybrid apps combine web and native mobile designs.
If you already have a website or an app that runs on desktop and would like to create a mobile version, you need a framework that supports hybrid mobile apps.
Photo Credit: visual.ly
Whichever your company chooses to build, the tools at your team’s disposal will crucially define how well-equipped they are to meet your project’s needs.
2.3 An Alternative to Native and Hybrid Apps – PWAs
An alternative to native and hybrid apps is a Progressive Web App (PWA).
What’s great is you can use them on any platform that uses a browser, including both desktop and mobile devices.
While PWAs are web pages or websites, they can appear to the user in the same way as native or hybrid apps.
They can be “installed” on the home screen and can even function offline. PWAs are also capable of re-engaging users with features such as push notifications.
They’re a popular choice because they combine the best features of web and mobile apps, are relatively easy to develop and maintain, and don’t require going through app stores for distribution.
They’ve been adopted by many big names, like Twitter, Starbucks, and Uber.
Choosing one, which we discuss more below, is therefore important for a company interested in using them to build mobile apps.
3.1 Increasing Your Audience
Streamlined app experiences reach more users for several reasons. The most obvious is that a better experience will attract and retain customers.
However, the major app stores like Google Play and Apple prioritize functional apps in their ranking system.
Having a well-built app on a respected framework can directly improve its visibility on these stores.
3.2 Improving Your Interface
Rather than search for your content on a mobile browser, the ability to click on your product directly and experience its optimized, native features improves an app’s outlook with its chosen audience.
3.3 Using Notifications to Your Advantage
Unlike web pages converted to mobile use, a true mobile app can make use of notifications to keep customers informed and remind them of your app’s features.
This is more significant for certain types of apps, such as those that offer workout reminders, schedules, or other time-sensitive content.
However, retail apps also benefit from notifications to offer customers deals and reminders.
3.4 Save Time and Resources
Managing a mobile web page is difficult because it requires designing the site twice.
Every time your site is changed, your team must optimize those changes for mobile as well.
Since technologies used to develop web apps differ from those used for mobile applications, the framework defines the viability of your company’s project.
The difficulties involved in converting web content to a mobile app can be addressed by using the right framework to create your hybrid app.
Several popular frameworks like Ionic and Cordova utilize programming shortcuts to make creating a hybrid mobile app easier.
By linking to your web code, these frameworks prevent your team from having to create separate interfaces for different phone operating systems.
Cordova, for instance, features many plugins that write the backend, or behind-the-scenes code, by itself, leaving your designers the task of creating the visible, front-end application on this premade foundation.
Several frameworks can be used for different tasks. For example, a framework like Ionic that has more features for frontend design can be used to create the app after your developers use Cordova to cover the code on the backend.
4.2 Utilize Wrapper Views
“Wrapper” or web views describe the way that most web applications are converted to mobile.
Webkit CSS allows developers to modify pages to fit a mobile format. Creating these web views on phones will not improve the site’s navigation for mobile-specific functionality, however.
This is where basic wrapper views should be optimized using other programs and tools such as Canvas. They allow designers to build apps using a working knowledge of app development but without requiring direct coding.
React Native is a framework often used by companies that want to develop their apps across multiple platforms.
jQuery Mobile’s strengths lie in its fast theme engine and its ability to build hybrid apps with a minimal programming footprint. Apps on jQuery mobile work independently of platforms, ensuring a responsive look on multiple operating systems.
4.4 How to Choose the Best Framework for Your Brand
The time it takes to develop an app on each will vary, with results that differ based on the program’s capabilities.
To choose the best framework for your brand, consider what your app hopes to prioritize. For example:
- React Native remains the most flexible framework for integrating other programming languages, such as from a pre-existing app, in order to transfer an application or add new features to it.
- Ionic’s codebase provides cheaper ways to develop multi-platform, hybrid apps. It would be a top choice for a business that wants to release its app as quickly as possible.
- jQuery’s systems provide the fastest load times of the major frameworks.
Every framework could be summarized this way, but rather than break down each of the dozens that are available, businesses should begin the selection process by asking what their unique objectives are for their app and finding a framework to match.
Chapter #5: Trending Technologies in Mobile App Development
Many advances have resulted in trending technologies that businesses should consider integrating with their app development strategy.
5.1 Augmented Reality
The development of augmented reality and virtual reality content has created new potential applications in fields such as safety training, education, retail, healthcare, and more.
Depending on your app’s intended applications, AR will be an increasingly powerful tool in the next decade.
5.2 Mobile Payments
Mobile payment applications like PayPal, Amazon Pay, and more have become ubiquitous eCommerce retail tools in the last few years. The use of mobile wallets has been steadily increasing as more customers receive promotions from their banks and phone companies to use them.
Integrating these applications with your mobile app will be key for businesses in retail and eCommerce spaces to remain competitive in the 2020s.
Photo Credit: ikajo.com
5.3 Artificial Intelligence Services
AI advancements have made chatbots and interactive voice assistants on mobile apps more than an added feature. They are now advanced enough to improve your users’ engagement.
By answering users’ questions, they also relieve pressure from your customer service team, saving your business time and money.
Giving customers the ability to access service information 24/7 improves their experience with your app and may increase your customer retention rate as a result.
Photo Credit: ibm.com
5.4 Google Plugins
Google plugins can help your app succeed in an increasingly competitive mobile marketplace.
A delay as small as a second between a customer’s interactions and the results on your app can cost an eCommerce business thousands of dollars a day.
Google offers solutions to issues like these, such as SEO kits, analytics tools, and a plugin called AMP or Accelerated Mobile Pages. It helps pages and apps rank higher and faster among their target customers, increasing conversions.
Your inbox wants some love.
So, what's the next step?
Talk with a real app developer