If you are confused and thinking about whether to create a hybrid mobile application or a native mobile application, this post will help you choose the mobile application strategy in less than 5 minutes! I have stumble upon lots of curious and confused entrepreneurs who go crazy looking to decide on how to approach their Mobile Application piece.
Native and Hybrid apps – A quick overview
A native application is an app program which has been created for the use on the specific platform or device.
Because native applications are written for that particular platform, they can connect to and take benefits of operating system characteristics and other software which is usually installed on that platform. Because a native application is created for those device and operating system, it has capability to use device-specific hardware and software, means native applications may take the benefits of the latest technology available on mobile devices.
Since the application is created within the fully developed ecosystem following the technical and user expertise suggestions of the OS (e.g. swipes, application defined gestures, left aligned header on Android, centrally aligned header on iOS, etcetera), it not only has the benefit of faster performance but also “feels right”.
Hybrid Apps :
Time to market or do it right?
Generally, when a company chooses to create a mobile application, they are either playing meet up with their competitors, or have recognized a business opportunity previously untapped. Whatever the reason, executives need the application developed out and released ASAP. However, as most people know, ASAP often means many compromises needs to be created as well as well creating choices on the fly. Both hybrid and native approaches can get the job done but there are specific factors that needs to be understood right off the bat.
First, if a company can wait 6 months or more before the application is launched, a native approach makes the most sense. Native applications have the best performance, highest security, and best user experience.
However, if the desired time to market is less than six months, then hybrid could be a much better option because the application may be built in one source code, can be launched across platforms, and development effort and time is considerably less as compared with those of native apps.
Native vs Hybrid Apps: A Quick Glance
There are numerous factors that you need to consider when you step-up to make the best Mobile Application for your target users. Should you select native, you have the luxurious of discovering native features and provide a much better user experience for your users.
5 Questions to ask before you decide:
The solutions to most of the queries which i have pointed here might be interrelated. But, you will obtain the drift.
(1) Do you want to use native features in the Mobile App?
If your application is heavy on native phone capability and this is your primary USP, then native application development will work best. While creating a Hybrid Mobile Application, based on the framework which you adopt (there are several in the market), you may or may not get access to native characteristics. Some of these native characteristics can be the Camera, Contacts, SMS, Hardware Device Buttons, Map, Push Notification.
(2) How quickly do you want to take it to the market?
The time to market is based on numerous reasons such as the number of features and number of resources you will have. More resources usually show that the budget increase. If you wish to launch the mobile application quickly to the market with limited resources, it would be wise to go along with hybrid application approach, which will help to launch your application on multiple platforms in a short time.
(3) Do you have separate budget for developers in iOS and Android (considering that they dominate the market share)?
If you can assign separate budget for iOS and Android development resources, and you have liberty of time to take it to the market (we had earlier wrote about the need for having your mobile application quick to market), then you do not have to worry much; go for native application!
The key piece here is, nowadays you will see android and iOS developers in abundance. So price of resource has also considerably dropped than earlier days. In fact, we would recommend you to go for a native approach unless your vertical is in need of a hybrid approach because the number integrations you will need to fill the gaps will be higher.
(4) How often do you need to update your mobile app?
If you need to create frequent updates for your application, which means the user will need to upgrade from the App Store frequently (and not annoying them with that), then you should think about a hybrid application. The greatest benefits for hybrid application is that all the content will be up-to-date from web directly, until you have an integral change of the functionality in the application. This is one of the reasons that most Banks, News, Media and Content Delivery platforms go for a hybrid approach, and the number of native integrations will be less. Hybrid applications also let you work out of a single code-base thereby helping the teams work more efficiently.
(5) Do you want to have the best user experience?
If you want to develop an insane user experience, the native application approach would do better. A hybrid application can never match the level of user experience that you get in a native application. However, this does not mean that the user experience of a hybrid application is bad. A good front-end developer in hybrid application can get close to a native experience, but it’s a far stretch as the browser is what a hybrid app’s user interface is. Browser has challenges with features, functionality, experience, scrollability.
Every platform has its advantages and drawbacks, and as we have made a detailed comparison, and analysis of each platform, and what Hybrid can do, and when it is a choice. We have to make a decision to choose an application that fits the most with our situation based on our criteria of time, cost, quality, and etc.