Mobile App development requires detailed planning and various processes to come together to build a harmonious whole. The process begins with an idea for the app, then continues to the planning stage, app design stage, app development stage, testing stage and finally, the release of the app to the planned mobile device/s. However, there is something that you need to decide on even before going through the stages of app development mentioned above.
You will have to determine the specific technique in which you would want to produce and deploy your app. In this article, we will give you two options that you can choose from: you can develop either a Web app or a native app.
So what exactly are native and Web apps? How do they differ from each other? Which of them are more suitable for you?
Native Apps are apps that are essentially developed for a particular mobile device. It is directly installed on the intended device. Native app users normally download the apps via the Google Play Store, the Apple Store, and other avenues. As an example, the Camera+ for the iOS devices of Apple is considered as a native app.
On the other hand, Web Apps are essentially apps enabled by the Internet. They are accessible through the Web browser of the mobile device.
They are not required be downloaded onto the mobile device of the user so it can be accessed. As an example, the Safari browser is considered as a mobile Web app.
a. User Interface – From the point of the users of the mobile devices, various native and Web apps seem to look and work in the same way, with very small differences between them. The decision between the two kinds of apps has to be made only when you have to determine whether to produce an application-centric app or a user-centric app.
Several companies develop both native and Web apps, so they can increase the reach of the apps that they develop while providing a satisfying overall experience for the user.
b. App Development Process – The process of app development of these types of apps is what separates them from each other.
Of course, several frameworks and tools are available for the developer which they can use to deploy apps to various Web browsers and mobile platforms.
c. Accessibility – native apps are fully compatible with the native features and the hardware of the device, including the camera, and the accelerometer while Web apps have access to only a limited amount of the native features of a device.
Native apps work as a standalone entity. However, the problem is that the user has to continue downloading updates. On the other hand, a Web app updates itself even without the intervention of the user. However, it must be accessed through a browser of the mobile device.
d. Making Money on Apps – monetisation of Apps with the use of native apps can be challenging, since certain manufacturers of mobile devices may place some restrictions on integrating some services with some mobile ad networks and platforms. On the other hand, Web apps allow you to monetise apps through charging fees for membership, advertisements, and so on. However, while the app store handles your revenue and commissions for native apps, you must establish your own payment system for your Web app.
e. Efficiency – Native apps are more costly to develop, but they are considered to be faster and more efficient since they work in tandem with the mobile device that they are developed for. They are also assured of quality, as its users can have access to them only through app stores online.
On the other hand, Web apps may have higher costs of maintenance across various mobile platforms. There is also no specific regulatory authority that controls the quality standards of these apps. However, the App Store of Apple features a list of the Web apps that are developed by Apple.
Summary of Pros and Cons
Native apps and Web apps both have their own set of strengths and weaknesses. Listed below are some of the pros and cons that you can consider when deciding what type of app you will develop.
Depending on which of the two kinds of apps is better all depends on the end goals of the developer. If you aim to establish a vast mobile presence, then you should opt for a mobile web app.
But if your goal is to develop an application that must more like a computer program instead of a website, then a native mobile app would be the best choice for you.
In deciding which among the two kinds of apps will be suitable for you, you must consider the following:
You must consider the above-mentioned aspects and then make an informed decision on the method that you would want to adopt in developing your app.
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