Recently there’s been much fuss about PWAs vs. Hybrid Apps. Making the jump from building a web site to the realm of building a mobile application, or from building mobile application a year back to assembling it nowadays, implies creating some base level choices that will make a huge difference.

This post will try to help you in choosing the right path, so that you will develop the right application for your mobile users. We will review and look at 2 conceivable solution you should have to choose from before building your application:

  1. Hybrid App
  2. Progressive web App (PWA)

Let’s get started with a short review and then compare the distinctive choices to help you pick the right one for your needs.

Hybrid App

If you realize how to make websites utilizing HTML, JavaScript, and CSS, there is an alternate route for you to make mobile apps quickly with an insignificant learning curve. You can change over your responsive websites into mobile apps with the assistance of a tool called Cordova.

Recently known as PhoneGap, Apache’s Cordova is a mobile application development framework that embeds your HTML5 code inside a native WebView on the device. Cordova acts as a wrapper around HTML/JavaScript code and gives a bridge to get device hardware and functions of the device. These capacities are exposed by means of a unified JavaScript API, permitting to effortlessly write one set of code to target almost numerous devices.

If you make websites utilizing frameworks/libraries like React, Angular, Vue, etc, there is a framework called Ionic which depends on web components and has styled components dependent on the design guidelines for iOS and Material Design for Android. One cool thing about this framework is that you can compose your app with one codebase yet while compiling for a particular platform, it picks the suitable styles on its own.

Progressive Web Applications(PWA)

You are more likely to come across a site that has a banner at the bottom requesting you to ‘Add to home screen’. These are not genuine apps, but websites that carry on an installed app, also called Progressive Web Applications.

Like a typical website, PWAs are facilitated on a server and distributed utilizing URLs rather than app stores. A PWA is found by the users utilizing search engines.

They use a technology called Service Workers which enable the website to work offline. Service Workers permit to cache the website on the device and give an icon for the bookmark created on the device.

Google has given a checklist which lists down the criteria for a website to be known as a PWA.

Let’s start looking at the differences and when you’ll need to utilize them:

Hybrid App:

STRENGTHS

  • Low barrier to entry – You can utilize common web technologies for example, Angular, HTML, JavaScript, and CSS. This saves time if your team isn’t as acquainted with Java, Swift or Objective-C.
  • Saves time – Since you just need to deal with a single codebase, you will require about half the developers that you would need for multiple native apps. Other than that, you can utilize a similar number of developers yet cut the time in half. In addition, developers who work on hybrid apps can typically charge less.

WEAKNESSES

  • Performance – Now, generally you’ll never see an issue however you have to understand the requirements of your application to figure out which route to go. If your app is for the most part, simple forms and has limited or no animations then you’ll approve with a hybrid approach. When your app requires more work from the GPU, for
  • example, animations or 3d graphics, performance will suffer if you go the hybrid route.

WHEN TO USE HYBRID

  • Business Forms
  • Brochure or Restaurant Menu type of applications
  • Mobile versions of static websites
  • Quick prototyping for poc apps

WHEN TO AVOID HYBRID

  • Games
  • Heavy Animation applications
  • Media heavy applications
  • Applications with a lot of information
  • Applications where you have to utilize the native hardware yet there are no plugins available.

PROGRESSIVE Web APPLICATIONS

STRENGTHS

  • Installation not required – Since PWAs keep running as web pages, they don’t require any lengthy download and installation processes. However, alternate routes can be installed on the device’s home screen.
  • Portable – These are basically only websites with the functionality of an app. The main advantage of these applications is that they don’t change your packaging and deployment model.
  • Quick load time – These apps load about in a flash, regardless of the state of the network conditions.

WEAKNESSES:

  • Supports only a few browsers – Today, these apps just work on Chrome, Opera, and the Samsung mobile browser. In any case, these browsers take up just not exactly 50% of the mobile browser market.
  • Limited hardware functionally – In some apps, fingerprint scanner, cameras, and GPS may not work or work with glitches.

When to use PWA:

  • Pick PWA if you are making an e-commerce website+app.

Conclusion:

Here at Ti Technologies, we work with both hybrid mobile applications and PWA that convey to back-end systems we build for our clients in the cloud.  Both function well. It’s a matter of realizing when to utilize one over the other and furthermore dependent on budget or timeline requirements of a customer. Pick Compiled or Hybrid if you and your team are alright with web technologies and need to build applications in a limited time. On the other hand, PWA has the most noteworthy reach with organizations like Twitter Lite, Flipkart,  and Starbucks reporting increased user retention rate.

Get in touch with our PWA or Hybrid app experts to know which platform will work best for your app. Fill out our online contact us form or call us directly. Our experts will get back to you within 24 hours.

 

Arun is one of the senior software developers at ti Technologies.