Hybrid Vs Native Apps – Pixster Studio

Hybrid Apps

Somewhere between native and web apps you’ll find hybrid apps. They are usually quicker to build (and thus cheaper) than native apps, but a step-up from what you can expect out of browser-based web apps. Is the hybrid app the best of both worlds?

The bulk of the app is built using cross-compatible web technologies, such as HTML5, CSS and Javascript — the same languages used to write web apps. Some native code is used however to allow the app to access the wider functionality of the device and produce a more refined user experience. For native apps, instead only native code is used. The advantage of this approach is obvious: only a portion of native code has to be re-written to make the app work on the different kinds of devices available.

An advantage that hybrid apps have over native is that it’s faster and easier to develop. It’s also easier to maintain and you can change platforms. The app itself will not be as fast as a native app as it still depends on the browser speed.

There are two main players in the world of hybrid apps: Phonegap/Cordova and Appcelerator Titanium. With these tools you create HTML/CSS/Javascript local files, design and build the app as if it was a website, then use Cordova to wrap them into a mobile app.

Getting your hybrid app to run appropriately on each platform generally takes substantial work. In some situations, the total cost might become comparable to that of fully native apps, rendering the cost benefits negligible. It all depends on how close you want to get to the “native user experience” or how simple your app is.

Still, there’s one big advantage in hybrid apps.  Being built on one single base, you can add functionality and have multiple versions of the app all benefit from it. On the contrary, with native apps, for every new functionality you want to introduce, the feature will have to be replicated on each platform.

There’s a big caveat here: if you’re building an app for an existing site or you have a mobile web app ready that does exactly what your app should do, but only misses what a native app generally provides (app store presence, push notifications, home screen icon, offline use), then turning your site or web app into a native app can be both quick and economical.

Not only you won’t have to manage two platforms (iOS/Android) separately, you’ll have a single web app to manage that covers the mobile web and the two major mobile platforms with your apps. This is what we built our latest MobiLoud Canvas platform for!


Native Apps

Native apps are what typically springs to mind when you think of an app. You download them from the App Store or Google Play, they sit within your device’s applications and you launch them by tapping their icon.

Developing Native Apps

What distinguishes native apps from the alternatives mentioned is that they are designed and coded for a specific kind of device. For instance, iPhone apps are written in Objective-C, Android apps in Java, etc.

Each mobile platform offers developers their own development tools, interface elements and standardized SDK. This should enable any professional developer to develop a native app relatively easily.

There are a number of advantages to writing apps in this way:

  • They offer the fastest, most reliable and most responsive experience to users.
  • They can tap into the wider functionality of the device; including the camera, microphone, compass, accelerometer and swipe gestures.
  • Publishers can make use of push-notifications, alerting users every time a new piece of content is published or when their attention is required. This is a key method of engagement. You get the opportunity to continually bring your audience back for more.
  • Users spend time on apps. The popularity of apps has increased enormously and is continuing to rise.

It’s not just about access to core device capabilities though, native apps, when well designed, respect the design patterns and standards of each platform. It goes beyond a left-aligned header on Android vs a center-aligned header on iOS, there’s hundreds of small differences in the design of user interactions on each platform. Taking them all into account means designing apps that are intuitive to use and play well with the rest of that platform’s ecosystem. Overall, going for native apps helps you create apps that are designed to delight your users.

The main downside of a native app is that it will not work with other kinds of devices. If you write an app in Objective-C for iOS, it’s not going to run on Android without being completely re-written in Java. When building for multiple platforms, developing a native app therefore can be quite expensive (when done from scratch), as it will require you to build and maintain multiple, separate versions of your app. It’s also common for developers to specialize in one platform, so often you’ll have to find different coders for each platform you want your app to be available for.

If your budget allows it, native apps are the ideal, offering the best user experience. When building from scratch and when multi-platform support is key, then be aware this can also be the most costly option.

A reputable developer or agency can easily quote you a good amount for a custom native app, built from the ground up. Multiply that for every platform you need to cover, considering nowadays you kind of have to build for both iOS and Android.

Things are quite different though when you’re considering using a native platform like Mobiloud, where the development has already been done for you, and you can simply take the benefits of native apps, without the costs. Platforms or app builders cover a specific use case or set of functionality.

With Mobiloud, its WordPress-based online publications such as news sites, blogs, online magazines, membership sites and similar.


This totally depends on you, What you want to use in your project. Both are very much in use these days. You can use it as per your requirement and need.

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