Native vs. Hybrid App: Which is the Best One to Use?

Many times, developers might find it challenging to identify the difference between native and hybrid apps.

Both technologies are used primarily for mobile app development. However, there are some significant transformations between these two technologies.

Let’s get started with the basics of native and hybrid apps.

What is a Native App?

A native app is a mobile application development methodology designed explicitly for a specific mobile operating system.

  • Objective-C or Swift for iOS
  • Java for Android

The most significant advantage of native apps is that:

  • It is Fast
  • It easily fits the features of any devices
  • It is developed to meet the target of user’s needs

On the other hand, you’ll need to perform more development, resulting in more time and cost.

You will be astonished that over 1000 apps on Google Play Store and Apple App store are developed natively.

What is Hybrid App?

Combining all the essential features of both native and web apps is made possible using hybrid applications.

The excellent part of hybrid apps is that you can access them from a web browser and download them from app stores. This is because they are written in HTML5 and JavaScript, like web apps. 

Hybrid apps are nothing but web pages wrapped in a mobile app using WebView. However, they also have access to the built-in capabilities of a device. 

They are built using cross-platform frameworks like React, Ionic, Sencha and Xamarin.

Difference Between Native and Hybrid Apps

It’s time to see how native and hybrid apps are similar and different based on different parameters.

  • Development Costs
  • UI/UX Design
  • Application Performance
  • Speed to Market

Let’s highlight some additional points for the metrics mentioned above. 

Development Costs

To design and build a mobile app from scratch is not too cheap.

It depends on various factors like:

  • Features you want to include in your app;
  • The complexities that you need to overcome
  • Timing to build your mobile app
  • The number of resources you might require to develop and deploy your app

If we talk about native apps, the cost is higher than hybrid apps in terms of superior performance, development complexity and time to build. Moreover, the codebase and design phase must be different for both Android and iOS app development.

In the case of hybrid apps, you only need to write one code that works well for both iOS and Android. As a result, it takes fewer resources to build, and this drastically reduces the cost. So hybrid apps are cheaper to develop as compared to native apps.

UI/UX Design

What are the essential factors that you, as a developer, need to keep in mind while developing?

  • Beautifully and responsive design
  • Easy to navigate
  • Simple to understand
  • Intuitive

Right? User experience and design are solely responsible for making your app successful.

Do you know that most mobile app users experience an adverse reaction, primarily due to poor user experience and design?

Native apps typically rely on Google and Apple’s native code. So, it’s pretty apparent that you’ll get better and longer-lasting design quality. In addition, it will make it easy for the users to understand and navigate your app easily.

The hybrid app works similarly. Users download the app and use the app frequently, and if an update comes suddenly, that isn’t supported by the HTML code, the app crashes.

Or, your app’s design and functionality work seamlessly on one device but terribly on another. Both experiences will affect your app’s overall rating and perception.

Application Performance

An application that performs well is the best one. Right?

But how do you determine that your app is performing well? It is determined by:

  • The speed with which your app responds
  • The intuitiveness of every function deployed in your application
  • Overall app behavior

Native apps offer best-in-class security and highly responsive design; they provide users with a more seamless and reliable experience.

The hybrid app follows the basic principle: write it once and run it anywhere. It means that the speed of the application development is fast as compared to native apps.

Hybrid apps entirely depend on third-party plug-ins to bridge the gap between the website and the native container. But trust me, the developers are not sure, or we can say they don’t have control over such challenging tools.

Let’s say an operating system like iOS or Android comes up with a new feature; all the system changes and modifications are needed to continue running the hybrid app in its native container.

Speed to Market

Different business owners and companies have various reasons to build an app. But the primary goal is to stand out from their competition. 

Building native apps might be costly, and you will intend to develop them quickly and at the time.

Native apps do not allow you to run your app on Android and iOS using the same codebase. As a result, it often takes more time to build and deploy.

And if we talk about hybrid apps, it takes the same amount of time as native apps. Moreover, they also require your back-end to be developed in parallel.

Native vs. Hybrid: Which Approach is the Best?

The answer to this question is that it depends on your business requirements.

If you have less time to develop an app, then native app development is the best option.

If you want to develop an app with the best possible user experience, security, and performance, native development is a perfect choice.