There are benefits and drawbacks when deciding on any particular tech stack, or even whether to build or buy software. When product development teams decide on the technologies they will use, they’re taking on the technical debt that these dependencies, libraries, operating systems, etc. will remain maintainable and scalable.
In this article, we cover what a hybrid app is, how it differs from native, and compare the benefits and drawbacks to building your hybrid app.
What is a Hybrid Application?
A hybrid app uses a single code-base to share the app’s business logic across multiple devices (mobile vs. web) and platforms (iPhone vs. Android).
definition of a hybrid app
But to understand what makes hybrid apps special, it may be best to first learn what a native app is.
What is a Native Application?
A native app is an app built Colombia Phone Numbers List for a specific device or operating system, which must conform to the standards, requirements, and APIs set forth by the manufacturer’s SDK.
To build truly native apps for Apple devices, for example, you must write code in the Objective C language or their proprietary language, Swift, and use their native API, Cocoa.
If and when your team decides it’s time to release the app for Google devices, none of the code or APIs used to build the iOS app will translate to Android. This is because macOS, iOS, and the plethora of other operating systems built by Apple, were built in isolation.
You can think of native platforms as remote islands with distinctively different languages and no communication between the two. Building hybrid apps is like successfully establishing trade between two or more of these remote islands.
table comparing hybrid apps to native applications across categories such as performance, cost, time, and more.
Benefits of Hybrid Apps
There are many reasons why you should consider developing hybrid mobile apps vs. native apps.
Technology moves fast, and businesses must operate with efficiency and agility to keep up. Hybrid apps offer us a chance to get to the total addressable market faster, cheaper, and more efficiently.
Shared code = less time.
The ability for hybrid apps to share a single codebase across multiple platforms offers a pace of development that would be impossible when developing separate apps for more than one native platform.
Developers building hybrid apps are also able to use well-defined and documented APIs, a large community of users that can help diagnose problems, and existing libraries to share common functionality (login, authentication, payments, etc.).
Although time is money, as they say, hybrid apps are not only cheaper because they are faster.
Since hybrid apps are built on widely used programming languages, a deeper talent pool exists for hiring developers at a reasonable salary or contract rate. Talented native app developers are a scarce resource and therefore can command much higher prices.