Customer Experience

Key Differences between Native and Hybrid Mobile Apps

Do you want a Native or a Hybrid mobile App?

That’s is the very first question that pops up while embarking on a mobile app development project. The choice depends on what we set out to achieve with the App. However, before digging deeper into details, let’s first differentiate a Native app from a hybrid app.

A Native app is an application that had been developed for a specific operating system (Android or iOS). Hence the app needs to be redeveloped for each operating system. In simple terms, you cannot reuse the code.

On contrary to this, a Hybrid app, once developed, will work on all operating systems (both Android and iOS). You do not have to rebuild and hence your source code stays good for all operating systems.

Well, now let’s get into the technical differences:

Native vs Hybrid Mobile Apps – Technical Differences

A native mobile app is developed with platform specific languages. For e.g.: Java for Android and Swift for iOS.

A Hybrid app is developed using similar technologies that we use for creating a website. It uses, HTML, CSS and JavaScript. A hybrid app is simply a website wrapped inside a native app container. The content is loaded when the user navigates through the application.

Now, since we have differentiated a native mobile app from a hybrid mobile app, let’s now correlate these on specific priorities that help us in our decision making.

Performance: A native app, once installed downloads most of the content while a hybrid app works more like a website by sending server requests to fetch most of its pages/ screens. Hence a native app will be a lot faster. Moreover, most of the content within a native mobile app can be viewed while you are offline.

User Experience: iOS and Android are different platforms. Hence, a native app specifically developed for each of these operating systems will deliver better user experience that a hybrid app that follows a one size fits all approach. User experience is the key to a successful app and hence native apps takes a precedence over hybrid apps.

However, a hybrid app too has its own advantages.

Native mobile apps cost time and money. Needs more research and more efforts. On the other hand a hybrid app is easy to develop and deploy. So, if your business has any of the following situations, a hybrid app could be a preferable solution:

–          Needs to launch an app within a short time period.

–          Need to assess the marketability of an app.

–          Needs an app for a temporary period. Promotions, offers etc.


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