The choice of platform is one of the most important choices to make when developing a mobile application. Developers usually choose between a mobile application that runs on Android operating system, or one that works on iOS. These apps that work on a specified operating system are referred to as native apps. They can also develop cross-platform mobile applications, which are apps that run on both iOS and Android operating system. Cross-platform apps are different from native apps, in the sense that they are developed with a single codebase, usually written in a single framework. Asides running on both Android operating system and iOS, some cross-platform apps also work seamlessly on desktop and the web. We will discuss below, important things that you need to know about developing cross-platform applications.

What Is The Need For Cross-Platform Mobile Application Development?

You may wonder why there is a need to create cross-platform mobile applications, when native apps that work for specific operating systems can be developed. There are a number of reasons for this. One of the reasons is that creating cross-platform mobile applications is cost effective. When you develop a cross-platform mobile application, it is basically a one-size-fits-all app that works for all platform. Developing the app with a single codebase means that it will work on both Android operating system and iOS. For native apps, you have to develop two or more different apps making use of multiple coding languages. As such, you incur more cost developing multiple mobile applications. Developing a cross-platform mobile application also saves time. You spend time developing just one application in a single framework, instead of two which is required with native apps. As there is only one project to work on, monitoring productivity is much easier.

Choosing Between A Native App And A Cross-Platform App

Seeing that you have two options considering the platform for your apps, it might be quite difficult to make the correct choice. Choosing between a native app and a cross-platform app can be made easier, by understanding the best conditions for each option. Below are conditions, which are not ideal for cross-platform apps. In such situations, it is best to go for a native app.

  1. Lack Of Experience: When your team of developers have no experience using multi-platform technology, it is best to go for native apps. Going ahead with cross-platform mobile application without experience, might not yield the best results.
  2. If the mobile application requires a low-level mobile API, it is best to go for a native app.
  3. A cross-platform app is not your best option, if you are seeking great performance and effectiveness.
  4. You should develop a multi-platform mobile app, if you intend to integrate it with external devices like IoT. Otherwise, a native app is the best choice.
  5. Another thing to consider is the type of app that your competition uses. If the competition uses a native app, developing a native app too, is the smart option. Also if a cross-platform app is the choice of the competition, it is best to go for a cross-platform app.

What Are The Best Cross-Platform App Technologies

The best cross-platform development technologies are Flutter and React Native. These technologies stand out for their big name makers, as well as their effectiveness. Flutter was created by Google, while React Native was created by Facebook. They are both efficient app technologies with amazing benefits that make app development easy and straightforward. Founded in 2017, Flutter has well-organized documentation and fast performance. React Native was founded in 2015, and gives users the option of hot reloads. Some cross-platform applications created with Flutter include Google Assistant, Google Ads, Alibaba Group as well as Tencent. Apps that run on React Native include Instagram, Pinterest, Airbnb, Walmart, Uber Eats, and Skype.

Final Words

A good number of leading brands around the world, make use of multi-platform technologies for their applications. Using a cross-platform apps can save you money and time, when done properly. Do a market research first, and determine what the best option for your industry is. Consult the team of developers to be sure that they can create a cross-platform app that works seamlessly. With the right team, you can get the best out of a multi-platform application.

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