Choose the best  Native Apps vs Hybrid Apps vs Native Apps using Flutter

What is a Native Application?

A native application is a software / program which performs some specific task on a particular platform. A native application is built using software development tools (SDK) for a certain software framework, hardware platform or operating system. For example, a native Android app is built using Java Development Kit on a Java platform, a native iOS app is built using iOS SDK, Swift and Objective C. Similarly, .NET is required for a Windows platform.

Pros:

  • Native apps are very fast and responsive because they are built for that specific platform
  • They have the best performance
  • They are distributed in app stores
  • They are more interactive, intuitive and run much smoother in terms of user input and output
  • Native allows developers to access the full feature set of their given platform with whatever performance optimizations the native system has
  • Internet connection is not required, although it depends on the functionality
  • Overall better user experience. To the user, the flow is more natural as they have specific UI standards for each platform

Cons:

  • Difficult languages to learn which means you need experienced developers
  • More expensive
  • Not the best option (overkill) for very simple apps

native_app

What is a Hybrid Application?

Hybrid apps work across platforms and behave like native apps. A hybrid app is essentially a combination of a native app and a web app. Users can install it on their device like a native app but it is actually a web app. These types of apps are built with Javascript, HTML, and CSS and run in Webview.

10 best frameworks for mobile hybrid apps:

  1. Xamarin
  2. Phonegap
  3. Ionic
  4. NativeScript
  5. React Native
  6. Intel SDK
  7. Framework7
  8. Appcelerator Titanium
  9. Mobile Angular UI
  10. Onsen UI

Pros:

  • Built on web technology HTML/ CSS/ Javascript so it’s much easier to build
  • Cheaper than a native app
  • One app for all platforms using technology like Cordova
  • No browser needed as opposed to a web app
  • Have access to the device’s internal APIs, can access storage, camera, etc.
  • Faster to develop than native apps because you have a single code base.

Cons:

  • Slower than native apps
  • More expensive than standard web apps because you have to work with the wrapper. Essentially you’re dependent on a third party platform
  • Less interactive than native apps
  • Some advanced customization requirements will take you away from the hybrid model, in which you may as well go native

hybrid_app

What is Flutter?

Flutter is Google’s modern development kit designed to build mobile apps for Android, iOS, and Google Fuchsia, a new platform that’s being developed by Google.

Pros:

  • Hot Reload
  • Perfect for MVP (minimum viable product)
  • Cross Platform Development (Single Codebase)
  • Less Code
  • Faster Development
  • Readily available widgets
  • Official support, as it is backed by Google.
  • Access to Native Features
  • Easy to Set Up

Cons:

  • The APK/IPA of a Flutter app will almost always be considerably larger than that of a native app.
  • Currently, Flutter doesn’t have a WebView widget. So, you can’t embed a WebView in your app’s view hierarchy.
  • It doesn’t have a graphic UI editor like the design editor in Android Studio or Storyboard editor in Xcode.

flutter

Native vs. Hybrid vs. Native Apps in Flutter- Which Approach Is Best?

The decision to build either a native, or hybrid mobile app, or native apps using Flutter, should be based on your business objectives. Before jumping into development, you should consider the following factors:

  • How fast you need the app
  • The quality of the user experience you want your app to have
  • The complexity of the features you need for your app to work
  • Your Budget

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