Going Native or Hybrid? The Case for Each

How can you effectively connect to your customers? One of the most effective tools is a mobile application. Great, you say. All I have to do is create a mobile app, and clients will beat a path to my door! Before you start hunting for a developer, you must decide whether you want to develop a hybrid or native app. Read on to learn about the difference between the two types, and which will be best for your business.

Native Apps

Developers use device-specific programming language to create native apps. That means that apps can access the device directly. Also, native apps aren’t portable.

What does portability mean when it comes to apps? A native iOS app will only work on an iOS device, while a native Android app will only work on an Android device.

Hybrid Apps

In contrast to native apps, developers use JavaScript, HTML5, and CSS to develop hybrid applications. Then, they wrap the app in a code that enables it to run on any device. The app can then access features native to the phone, such as its camera and notifications.

Because a hybrid app can work on a variety of devices and applications, it is cheaper to develop. Moreover, businesses can get the app to market faster than they would if they developed a native app.

The Clear Winner?

If hybrid apps are cheaper and faster to develop, you should be focusing your energies on developing a hybrid app¦ right? As it turns out, a hybrid app might not be your best choice. There are several factors you need to consider when developing an app.

The first factor is functionality. Keep in mind that when Apple or Android releases an update, native app developers have access to the latest features. Hybrid app developers, on the other hand, have to wait until a third party software library includes the updates.

Secondly, security is a factor of which you can’t lose sight. HTML5 leaves apps more vulnerable to breaches and hacks. Furthermore, hybrid apps don’t have access to all of the security features a native app would.

A third factor, which might be less important for some, is performance. Hybrid apps don’t handle animation or 3D graphic rendering (used in gaming) as well as native apps do. Their start time is 15% slower than native apps, although that might not be an important consideration for many businesses.

What Should You Choose?

Your choice of app development technique should be based on what your customers want and need from you. Do they demand 3D graphics and lots of animation? Are you in the healthcare or financial services field, where security is paramount? If that’s the case, you should focus on developing a native app.

Do your customers use a variety of operating systems and devices? Is it less critical that your app makes use of the latest features in an operating system? Then a hybrid app makes the most sense for your organization.

Ultimately, you have to listen to your customers, and find out where they’re leading you. They won’t want to connect with you if the app doesn’t meet their wants and needs.

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