3 Key parameters to choose between Native and Hybrid App Method?

Whenever it comes to mobile application most of the time people look towards Hybrid – One for all. A cost effective approach they say. But the bigger question to ask is that always the case ?

Well, it depends. There are certain which let you finalize whether you should stick to the Hybrid app development and optimizing it for multiple device/platform or develop and maintain individual applications for all different platforms.

To make things simple, native app development requires application to be devloped in device specific languages like Objective C ( for ios), Java like language ( Android). Whereas, in hybrid app development, entire application is developed using HTML5 and embedded in application.

Coming back to our point, when deciding between Hybrid and Native app, Hybrid seems to cost effective, quick and easy to maintain option. But speaking to lots of mobile app developers and managers says that it’s not. And 3 Key parameters to go through before settling with final options are goes:

  • External Devices Integration

Most of the mobile apps integrate with external device over your phone Bluetooth or WiFi or Audio Jack connector? The cross-platform approach may not be the right approach. Most of the external device like fitness sensors, credit card readers or any other accessory is difficult to integrate robustly with the cross-platform approach.

External device manufacturers provide native iOS SDK and Android SDK which would support only native access. You might figure out Javascript code to somehow make the code work with these devices but you may not be able to support all IOS and Android devices.

  • Flexibility of Transitions and animation

If you are building an app, which requires very sleek user interface or may have animations or custom graphics, then cross-platform app development may not be the best approach.

iOS and Android have 20+ popular devices with different screen sizes and resolution. It can get very messy if you have to support all those screens using the same source code.

Cross-platform design works well, when the interaction points do not call for a lot of server-side interaction (In other words, if there is an opportunity for a lag, there will be a lag and it will be pronounced.).

  • Local Storage and API Access

Cross-platform mobile apps, which have large database and work offline after frequently synching with the server may not perform well . They ONLY allow option to add SQLite or WebSQL in the project and provide server syncing and offline functionality.

However, if the app is going to make several asynchronous queries with the local database or server database and your schema is very large, you will start seeing slow performance and the app might crash.

Also, to enable use Push notifications, Address Book API, Media player or any of the advanced Phone APIs? If yes, you would want to be extra careful.

To Conclude, Hybrid app development is good if mobile app is just to ensure your presence in mobile apps and not going be the primary mode of business. a minimal version can be developed fast and can be enabled to work with most of the devices. However, to achieve any specific functionality you are going to need more than that – A native App.

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Hope this helps.

  • Anuj

    I really liked your approach in explaining such a simple yet important decision every mobile app developer has to go through. Keep it up.

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  • prasad

    development on phonegap is widely recommended but it comes under Hybrid,so all these issues are applicable to that or not?

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