Are native apps still better than Hybrid apps?

Since the popularity of hybrid apps and web apps, native apps have developed a reputation for being costly to develop and not being unique to stand out from the rest of the apps. But what native lacks in being easy to develop for developers, a native app will make up for its fair share of criticism by being simply better at every metric of being a mobile application be it user experience or security.

What is Native App Development?

Let’s first see what is a native app, the need to define a native has risen due to the impact of hybrid app development platforms. A native app is made with the sole intention of running an app on a specific platform such as Android or iOS. While hybrid app development platforms are a type of code once-run-anywhere deals where a single code can be executed in multiple mobile operating platforms such as Android, iOS, and BackberryOS. Native app development platforms such as Android and iOS have an edge as they have access to all the hardware components of smartphones. The user experience is also leaps and bounds ahead of any hybrid app development platform as well. They also get an extra push when it comes to Google play store or Apple’s apps store too

Native Apps vs Hybrid Apps vs Web Apps and Why Native Apps is better

  • Native perform way better
  • App Store Advantage
  • Better Security
  • Scalability and Updates
  • Better Integration
  • Better User Experience
  • Offline Capability

Native perform way better

When talking about Hybrid vs Native app performance, native apps can fully leverage each and every hardware of the smartphone, this is not the case with hybrid apps, while hybrid app development platforms cut down time coding and development but they come with their disadvantages. Sometimes hybrid apps cannot get access to all the APIs with an operating system, this comes from a program that is trying to be a native without much luck. When compared with Native app, web Apps on the hand is just HTML trying to pass itself as native app, the speed of web apps is directly dependent on the existing web speed and are usually useless without the functionality of the internet, as a standalone app, web apps cannot be even considered as a viable option.

App Store Advantage

Native apps have the backing of the apps stores of Android and iOS, they are given preference over hybrid by default by the stores themselves due to better performance and better security. The hybrid apps have rigorous quality and security standards to pass even before they have to consider just listing them on the native app stores. iOS usually takes around 7 days for hybrid apps to be approved for listing while it’s 2 days for a native app, the story is similar for Android as well. This also trickles down in the case of updates as well, when updating an existing app, it is easier when it is a native app instead of a hybrid app. The updates again have to go through some guidelines and compliances to update the app from the app store. There is an advantage for web apps as they do not charge service charges for online transactions, unlike apps store which does take a commission for online transactions.

Better Security

When it comes to security, native apps have a definite advantage as all security protocols of the native platforms get added into the application which is not the case with hybrid apps. As explained before, since native apps have more leverage with operating systems, the layers of security get added to each other. In the case of hybrid apps, developers need to constantly change their application with respect to the various security patches of the operating as their application cannot benefit from it directly. In the case of web apps, since they operate on HTML, CSS, and javascript the security is only good as the internet connection of the service provider.

Scalability and Updates

native app and their developers have access to practically unlimited API’swhich are provided by the native app platform developers, these APIs are a perfect fit for their respective platforms. Even if there is no API for a specific function. APIs can be created with native app development tools such as Android Studio or Xcode. In this case, hybrid app developers need to rely on the code conversion abilities of the hybrid development platform which is often lacking. When it comes to web applications, their limits are defined by the version of the browser in the native platform and the internet connectivity speeds of the network provider.

Better Integration

Smartphones have a lot of hardware parts, native apps can fully leverage these hardware parts while hybrid apps cannot come anywhere close when compared with native apps. Hybrid apps will always have to compromise as either the development will become complex even without a guarantee for 100% integration. Web applications integrating with the hardware components are a nightmare to developers, to say the least, thus their waning impact on the mobile apps scene.

Better User Experience

native app have an edge when it comes to the user experience, native app developers can leverage the existing API’s to their maximum advantage. The look and feel can be simulated with many hybrid apps but can be never duplicated beyond the recognition by the user. Hybrid can come quite close but even for coming close hybrid developers needs to create multiple API’s to come close even though hybrid development platform like flutter comes with pre-coded UI elements from Apple and Android, they do not merge seamlessly with the overall environment. As far as web apps are concerned, they are limited by their technologies, to begin with, making them a non-competitor in this round of the contest.

Offline Capability

Answering the question of which is better when it comes to offline usability in the case of Hybrid apps vs Native Apps vs Web Apps. Native and Hybrid can function as a standalone app even without an active internet connection, some ride-sharing apps have gone a step further by optimizing their app to use even without an active internet connection. As far as web apps are concerned, they are fully dependent on an internet connection, many of their features are on a remote host even accessing them is dependent on the quality of the internet connection, which is again dependent on the location and service provider.

What really Matters

Let asks ourselves some questions to get the answers

  • How important is the performance of your app?
  • Does your app have the requirement to add any device-specific hardware features?
  • Do you want your app to support multiple platforms and devices in the shortest amount of time?
  • What is your mobile app development budget?

As far as the performance part is concerned, when choosing between the app development platforms, the focus has to be the end user’s experience. Granted native apps take way too long to develop, and are way more costly than both hybrid and web apps. Hybrid apps theoretically do put on additional load on the smartphone, but when taking into consideration the hardware specification of the average smartphone on the market, the load is negligible in most cases. Debugging and updating the native app is also easy when compared with hybrid apps, and the security of the application is on a different level altogether, the hybrid doesn’t even come close to native app in this regard. native app trumps both its competition hands-on, users will always remember the ease of use and the memorable graphical elements. This will reduce the uninstalls and increase the retention rates of the application.

To answer the rest of the questions, native apps are known for being too expensive to develop, and also take a longer time to develop as well. If we are talking device’s hardware access capabilities, native apps are better even though hybrid apps can come close, this would eventually beat the purpose of using hybrid app development as the workload of developers will increase and the time required to develop the app will also consecutively rise as well. With Hybrid apps, companies can do that but at what cost?  In every end-user impacting metric hybrid apps will always come second. the native app may not be part of the code anywhere and run everywhere ecosystem, but the development of apps in their native platforms is a solid and future-proof investment in the simplest of words.

In Conclusion

Go For Native App Development!

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