The market for mobile devices is evolving every day, and consequently, developers are faced with the challenge of supporting platforms and guaranteeing usability. The first task is to choose a mobile application platform. For example, Android uses Java, Apple IOS uses Objective C, and WindowsPhone uses Silverlight. Each of these options has its API, its target audience, and its niche in the market.
There are only two options to solve the above problem. The first is to only focus on one particular direction of technology. Still, then many people will need help to be able to use that application, leading to a loss of a considerable percentage of the market. The second option is to support all platforms, but the development and maintenance costs would increase significantly.
But there is a third option. This is to create a mobile web application. Such utilities are developed once and distributed to different platforms because web browsers are built into all operating systems.
To create a hybrid application, experts use various paid and free frameworks, the most common of which are PhoneGap, Cordova, and others.
Pros and cons of hybrid mobile apps
We’ve figured out what hybrid apps are all about. But to understand when and in what situation it would be appropriate to use them, you first need to understand their strengths and weaknesses.
- They don’t run from a browser.
- You can automate updates.
- The speed of development and its price is much lower than other types of applications (e.g., native ones).
- It can be distributed through app stores (unlike web apps).
- Speed and stability are not good enough.
- Difficulties in scaling and development.
- Problems and instability when using different modules and additional complex smartphone features.
When to use hybrid apps?
Now we’ve figured out the pros and cons of hybrid mobile app development, and you’ve probably started to get a general picture in your head of what they are. Here are cases where using hybrid-type utilities is appropriate and correct:
- You need to create a simple program without complex elements.
- There is no need to utilize native functionality.
- The application is being developed for multiple platforms.
The demand for development is constantly increasing, and most customers need quick implementation, so there is an increasing interest in uncomplicated solutions with affordable costs.
Due to this, the hybrid approach is increasingly used, which, in some cases, is even more effective than the native approach.
To summarize, it is worth saying that hybrid mobile apps are a kind of compromise between native and web applications. They are hosted within the native application and run through WebView. They have access to information on the user’s device. The hybrid utilities look and are used like native utilities: they can be downloaded from the store and installed on the device. Installation can be nominal, as such applications have access to the user’s data but often do not themselves store their data directly on the user’s device.
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