React Native: A Framework for Building Native Mobile Apps
Statista maintains that by 2024, the global mobile app market revenue will grow at a rate of 10.4%, creating a market volume of US$ 5.2 million.
It further states that by 2023, mobile app revenues will stand at US$ 935 billion, thanks to in-app advertising and paid downloads.
These statistics highlight the fact that the mobile app market presents a promising business opportunity. However, in a market that’s already flooded with hundreds of applications, the only way to stand out in the crowd is to offer cross-platform mobile apps with excellent UI and UX.
But, how to create an app that performs well and works seamlessly across multiple systems?
You use React Native.
React Native is a massively popular mobile app development framework that combines the power of React with native app development. You can use React Native to design a unique Android and iOS app from scratch and also to tweak your existing apps. It is the foundation behind successful apps like Pinterest, Skype, F8, Bloomberg News, Facebook, Instagram, Airbnb, and Walmart.
React Native app development is popular among mobile app companies since it is simple, quick, and efficient.
What is React Native?
React Native app development allows developers to leverage the ReactJS library to design mobile apps that both look and feel “native.” Since the React Native platform is replete with APIs, developers get multiple options for integrating features in a native mobile app.
What are the benefits and limitations of React Native?
Today, React Native app development is immensely popular, thanks to React Native’s rapidly expanding community. In fact, React Native apps have snatched a significant portion of the market share.
Advantages of React Native
Here are the main benefits of React Native:
1. Easy learning curve
React Native app development is perfect for beginners as it features a smooth learning curve. Except for some minor differences, React Native is quite similar to ReactJS. The main differentiating factor between React Native and ReactJS is that instead of using HTML and CSS, Native uses UI libraries.
2. One codebase for iOS and Android
In React Native app development, you can build platform-specific versions of app elements so that multiple platforms can share a uniform codebase. One team can maintain two platforms while sharing a common technology, React.
React Native can compile a single code to native Java and Swift code. It creates a “bridge” between the native elements and web UI components. Thus, it eliminates the need for synchronizing features.
3. Create genuine native apps
With React Native, you can design pure native apps that deliver exceptional user experiences. It comes equipped with a host of platform-agnostic native components that map directly to the native UI components of a specific platform.
4. Use native code when required
React Native is designed to sync seamlessly with native components written in Java, Swift, and Objective-C. Naturally, React Native app development lets you to easily switch to native code for optimizing features of your mobile app. You can also develop some parts of your app using native code, and design other aspects of the app using React Native.
5. Build and launch apps faster
React Native app development is a quick and seamless process. Since React Native uses web technology underneath, the app screens can reload instantly, reflecting the new changes.
Now that we’ve stated the advantages of React Native app development, it’s time to mention the drawbacks of the React Native framework.
Limitations of React Native
React Native is a young and emerging project. It is still undergoing rigorous development accompanied by constant updates to the framework. Regular updates mean bug fixes, performance improvements, the addition of new custom components, and much more. This poses a challenge for long-term app maintenance. Developers need to update the app with each build, which may lead to hardcore platform dependency.
Furthermore, React Native lacks some components that would make it a universal mobile app development framework. Developers need to create native modules for functionalities and features that are absent in React Native. Native modules (usually written in Java, Swift, and Objective C) function like a bridge between the native code and React Native code. As a result, React Native app development is still reliant on native developers.
Essentially, the React Native framework is an abstraction. This means that large portions of code exist between React Native and the host platform. Bugs almost always accompany abstractions. In React Native, debugging becomes a complicated process as it increases layers in your project. These bugs may be issues that are beyond your skills and knowledge base. Hence, solving these problems often requires the assistance of third-party developers.
React Native has its fair share of advantages and disadvantages. It allows for speedy React Native app development, enables code reusability, and features a shared codebase for multiple platforms. However, the major issue with React Native is that it’s relatively new, and hence, not completely mature.
Ideally, React Native app development is best-suited for small apps that don’t utilize too many custom UI features and rely on device-specific APIs.
We at Affle Enterprise grasp your business challenges & ideate a personalized user experience to solve complex business problems. Connect with our team at email@example.com for a quick mobile app development consultation.
Mohan Tyagi is a tech enthusiast with specialisation in Digital transformation. He is a man who is passionate about technology and helps start-ups and enterprise with their business processes automation & consultation.