Mobile app development is the most sought-after feature of every start-up service and hot new product today. The reasons that mobile apps are so highly prized amongst firms are pretty compelling. The first question people ask when discovering something new: does it have an app?
A dedicated mobile application shows intent and investment in providing to users. A mobile app can show off your branding, promote your favoured services and bring users into the fold as easily as a tap and a swipe. It’s rapidly become the first-choice mode of user interaction.
With more than 7 billion devices out in the world now, the mobile marketplace offers up a vast opportunity to find a sizeable user base. There is, however, more than one way to reach that audience.
The investment required to produce a dedicated native mobile application is a large one with major consequences. Deciding whether to pursue a mobile application or an alternate source of revenue is a difficult one to make. The resource could instead be diverted into developing existing services further, or invested in alternate app development approaches to achieve many of the same goals and results.
In developing an accessible app, there are multiple approaches available to reach your desired goal. Native mobile, web app, and hybrid approaches can be taken to design and produce a mobile application to suit your technical, engineering, and financial requirements.
Each of these options has its own benefits and drawbacks. What suits one business or project won’t necessarily suit another. Here we’ll dive deeper into the pros and cons of each and what these mean for your application.
Commonly seen as the 'gold standard' in a mobile presence, native mobile apps offer a lot for businesses looking to expand their reach and enhance existing services.
For several years in succession, mobile apps have attracted more users than desktop computing. App use is now dominating the online experience, with many web services being forgotten about altogether.
Even traditional hold-outs, the industries which stayed a web-first service longer than most, are now focusing on an app-based approach. Mobile banking, financial services, utilities, and online shopping are now leading with their mobile apps to satisfy user demand.
Investing in a bespoke mobile application for one or two platforms does have benefits and drawbacks. While meeting customer expectations with an attractive user experience, it’s also a significant investment in resources and added time-to-market.
Weighing up these benefits and drawbacks is critical to making the right competitive decision for your service going forward. You will also want to make sure you stay up to date with the latest in mobile app engineering. We are here for when you need to find the right team to develop your new app, just tell us what you need. We can do the work for you and connect you with up to 5 companies within 72h that match your need- all for free.
Perhaps better known as not having an app at all, optimising the web experience to run well on mobile devices is a great way to reach users without the investment and time needed to produce a mobile application. Once accessed for the first time, users can even save a link to the page on the home screen and access the page again as if it were a fully installed app.
For users, it means that they don’t have to invest in the space and resources required to install yet another mobile app. There’s no ‘buy-in’ required ahead of time and many of the features and functions look similar to that of a conventional app.
The advantages to the business are abundantly clear too. The resource spared on mobile app development can go a long way to improving services and features in other areas. Simply updating the website to upgrade the mobile experience will come at a fraction of the cost of a newly-built native application.
Well-implemented web technologies tailor the user experience to the device, platform, and screen size of the page. Desktop users will see a conventional-looking web page, whereas mobile users will see an experience optimised to meet the device they’re currently using.
The web app, far from being a transitional phase between the browser and app, has advantages and drawbacks of its own that make it worth strong consideration.
The advantages and drawbacks of web and native apps are prioritised by marketplace availability, access to the underlying device, and low-cost entry to mobile users. A hybrid app is a way to merge the best of both these worlds and enjoy the advantages of each.
Like a native application, users can install a hybrid app from the platform’s marketplace. They offer full access to the iOS or Android App stores. However, they also access the core functionality through a web browser embedded into the installed application.
The result is an installable mobile app requiring only a fraction of the investment and resources of a fully-fledged native application. Hybrid apps have clear and obvious advantages over both native and web apps, but suffer some of the same drawbacks too.
Hybrid apps are a solution to many common problems app developers face using both native and web approaches. Why not checking out our cross-platform Flutter teams to see if they are the right choice? Should you decide to proceed with this type of app and you need help selecting the right company, tell us what you need. We can do the work for you and connect you with up to 5 companies within 72h that match your need- all for free.
In truth, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to mobile application development. Whether you choose a web app, native app, or hybrid solution will depend on your particular project and its requirements.
If slick user experience and complex feature-sets are valued above all else, then a native mobile application is likely the best fit. If rapid time-to-market and reducing costs are mission-critical, then a web app might be ideal. If the truth is somewhere in between and you need the features of both at a minimal cost then a hybrid app could take care of many issues at once.
You will want to make sure you resolve this so you can begin to decide if you should hire a mobile app freelance developer or a remote mobile app development team.
Each solution works to the strengths of different products and services. The best option today may change one, two or five years down the road. Weighing up the pros and cons of each is a complex challenge worthy of expert consideration and a significant investment in thinking time and careful planning.
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