The Power of Hybrid App Development

Hybrid Development & How It Differs From All Native

If you’re thinking about the best approach for developing apps for your organization, the landscape can appear confusing. In general, you’ve got two options: native development and hybrid development.

Native development is where a developer writes an app using a platform-specific language unique to, say, iOS or Android. The developer gets access to all of the functionality that those platforms provide, but cannot transfer the app between platforms without rewriting it.  

Hybrid apps are different. They’re written in universal open web technologies that will work on any platform, such as CSS, HTML and JavaScript. From the user’s perspective, hybrid apps work in much the same way as native apps. But instead, they use a single codebase allowing you to offer your apps on a variety of platforms. You can sell hybrid apps via online marketplaces, like the Play Store and App Store, just as you would a native app. 

Benefits of Hybrid Development

As you might imagine, the benefits of hybrid app development are considerable. Here are just some of the advantages that you’ll enjoy. 

1. Lower initial development and maintenance costs 

As discussed, hybrid apps work across a wide variety of platforms, including regular web, iOS and Android. This fact lowers your costs: you no longer have to pay your team to develop different versions of your app to cater to all of the platforms that your users might use. All of your resources can go into developing a single, central code that will work across platforms. 

For companies in competitive spaces, hybrid development can be a godsend. Often the first app to market is the one that wins the lion’s share of customers. Hybrid app approaches slash development times and lets you release your app before your competitors do. 

2. The Best of Both Worlds

Speed is so important, you only notice when it isn’t there The latest Hybrid technologies are built to perform and behave great on the latest mobile devices with best practices. Best of all Hybrid apps allow you to integrate native SDKs and device features of native apps together with the full power and flexibility of the open web.

3. Seamless experiences across platforms 

Your users want your app to feel snappy and crisp. Pages should load quickly, and new options open up with ease. Customers shouldn’t feel frustrated that the experience is sluggish or slow to react to their commands. 

If you care about customer experience, the last thing you want to do is provide a different experience depending on which platform a user uses. But companies that go down the native route for app development can often fall into this trap. A user can end up expecting a specific experience on Android that contrasts to the one they had on iOS. It’s confusing and, sometimes, alarming. 

What’s more, it makes it more difficult for you to track what works in your app and what doesn’t. Sometimes you might find that the version for Android is excellent, but the implementation on iOS is not, complicating your development cycle. Debugging and other issues become far more complex when you go down the native route. 

4. Leverage Existing knowledge of web tech (JavaScript, HTML, CSS) 

Platform-specific programming languages can be esoteric. It’s rare to find a whole team, let alone a single developer, who is versed in all of them. This reality makes native app development tricky. Finding the people you need is a challenge, and when you do find them, you may have to pay more to keep them.

The same is not true of hybrid app development. There’s a vast pool of people out there with the skills that you need to put your development calendar into practice. 

5. Live updates directly to your users

One of the beautiful things about hybrid development is the simplicity of the updates. This enables you and your team to send live code changes directly to your users, when you’re ready, without waiting in line for App Store reviews and approvals.

Popular Apps Which are Hybrid

While it might seem like hybrid apps are for companies with limited resources, they’re actually the development model of choice for some of the world’s biggest companies. 

Take Twitter, for instance. Twitter knows that if it is to be successful, it needs to build an app that will work across practically all platforms. What’s more, it needs to ensure that the experience that it offers its users is consistent across devices and operating systems. Users need to be able to easily navigate around the company’s app, no matter how or where they log in.

The social media giant, therefore, uses a hybrid app. The simple universal coding options ensure that the Twitter you see on Android is identical to the one you get on Apple. 

Gmail is a hybrid app too. Google, the search giant behind the email services, has long been an advocate of HTML5, it’s preferred standard. Gmail is written in HTML5, providing a simple online and offline experience, irrespective of platform. 

Other notable hybrid apps include Khan Academy, the education platform, Uber, the ride-sharing app, and Instagram. In fact, it’s hard to think of a major app that people use every day that isn’t hybrid in nature. It is, in many cases, just the best solution. 

Why we choose Hybrid?

Regular businesses stand to benefit much more from the efficiencies that hybrid app development offers. You don’t need to employ a team of specialist platform-specific developers, providing you with flexibility and simplicity. For us at The App Match, it’s the best approach.

So why not consider adding a mobile app to your arsenal? Talk with the team at The AppMatch about Hybrid app development and how it can take your business to the next level.

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