Mobile apps have become an essential aspect of our everyday lives. Companies are creating native or cross-platform apps to connect with the more than 3.5 billion smartphone users worldwide. Most startups have limited budgets, and in a bid to connect with their target audience, turn to cross-platform mobile app development with React Native. This is because using React Native helps developers to save time and cost as well.
CEOs of early-stage startups usually face the challenge of choosing the technology to build their mobile apps. Due to limited funds, most startups don't generally have an in-house team of developers they can rely on for such matters. And so the CEOs are forced to cast about for a solution, especially if they cannot make up their minds about building native or cross-platform apps.
If you want to save money and time, opting for a cross-platform framework like React Native for your app is a wise move. This is why you need to learn how React Native can be beneficial for your next startup.
Native or Cross-platform Apps
If you want to stay in business, you need to reach as many people who fit your customer persona as possible. And most of these individuals use smartphones that run on the two most popular mobile operating systems, namely Android and iOS. The question that you must answer is which of the technology options should you go for: native or cross-platform apps?
If you choose to go the native app development route, it means you may have to build two separate mobile apps aimed at iOS and Android, respectively. But take note that you will need to hire two developers or two teams of developers to build the mobile apps separately for your startup. You will end up spending a lot of money while maintenance, upgrading, and updating costs may shoot through the roof.
The more affordable alternative to native app development is cross-platform app development. This technique allows users to create platform-independent mobile applications that run on Android and iOS.
To achieve this, you can utilize any of the following frameworks available on the market today:
- React Native
- Native Script
- Flutter (from Google)
- Apache Cordova
- Xamarin (from Microsoft)
Many other cross-platform frameworks are available, but only a few can hold a candle to React Native. Cross-platform mobile app development with React Native should be your preferred choice. This is because React Native is the most popular and versatile cross-platform mobile framework today. Deliberating on native or cross-platform apps will be a thing of the past by reading this article to the end.
What is React Native, and How Does it Work?
This approach enables startups with limited budgets to invest in cross-platform mobile app development with React Native just once, thereby acting as a single team. The cross-platform approach has become instantly popular and well-received by all and sundry due to its cost-effectiveness.
React Native was created by the tech giant and social media behemoth, Facebook, and it was released to the public in 2015. The team at Facebook already uses the cross-platform framework for Instagram, Facebook, and Ads Manager mobile applications.
React Native is widely used in a wide variety of mobile applications created by startups and Fortune 500 companies like Walmart, Wix, Uber Eats, Discord, and so on.
React Native and Native Technologies: What Makes Them Different?
The first time most people hear ‘React Native,’ they wrongly assume it has to do with native technology. If you have read thus far, you know that is far from the truth. React Native is not native technology.
Native applications are platform-specific apps built using programming languages that are native to a particular operating system. For example, Java is the programming language used in developing Android mobile apps, while Swift is used for creating iOS mobile applications.
A native application built for iOS won’t run on Android, and vice versa. Developers that focus on native apps perform double the work as they will be expected to create separate mobile applications for iOS and Android. In most cases, two teams of developers are usually engaged, meaning double the work, double the amount of time and money spent. This is the best option for Fortune 500 companies with unlimited funds or budgets.
However, startups turn to cross-platform mobile app development with React Native. This technology is eagerly adopted by organizations interested in reaching both Android and iOS users with their application. Startups that invest in React Native significantly reduce their time-to-market as well as all necessary effort required to release a fully-functioning product or MVP on both mobile operating systems without sacrificing the final output or product.
Is there a Difference between React Native and React.js?
Many individuals also confuse React.js or React with React Native, and that is because Facebook maintains both.
React.js is a front-end technology used to build high-performing and interactive interfaces for web apps and websites. React Native was built on top of React.js and works using closely related principles since both have the same syntax. Developers that know and understand React.js won’t experience much of a challenge with React Native.
How Can React Native Contribute to the Success of Your Project?
So, would you like to know how React Native can be beneficial for your next startup? The following vital benefits should help you make up your mind about going for native or cross-platform apps.
With React Native, sharing approximately 70-90 percent of the code between Android and iOS is possible, though this will significantly depend on how complex your mobile application is.
Every codebase must be updated, maintained, and well taken care of, so a shared codebase simplifies developers’ work greatly. Startups in the early stage of development value both their time and money and find this incredibly relevant. Cross-platform mobile app development with React Native helps startups to optimize their work as much as possible.
Cross-platform mobile app development with React Native can never be worse than the native one. Indeed, some of the innovative cross-platform technologies – i.e., web and hybrid apps – in existence today cannot ensure the same level of mobile application performance.
Using cutting-edge solutions like React Native ensures seamless mobile app performance. This is because this framework utilizes native components so that users can enjoy a native-like and smooth experience at all times.
The primary purpose of cross-platform mobile app development with React Native is to minimize or cut down the time as well as the effort required to create functional applications. The time needed to release the finished product is cut down considerably, thanks to the shared code.
This is highly crucial for startups that need to respond as fast as possible to the needs of the market in order to maximize profits and nurture leads or customers. The decreased time-to-market of the React Native-based mobile app quickly helps startups verify their business or product idea and deliver the minimum viable product (MVP) to end-users within a short time.
Pre-built Components and Reusable Code
This advantage opens your eyes to how React Native can be beneficial for your next startup. Developers working with React Native don't need to create a separate mobile application for each platform i.e., iOS and Android. This is because nearly 90 percent of React Native code can be reused between Android and iOS.
If you are considering building a mobile app as a startup, React Native is the ideal option as the development can cut the cost and time in half. Moreover, the beauty of React Native is that it is an open-source library full of pre-built components that contribute to the speeding up of mobile app development.
It is very likely that someone has already written the code for some of the functions in the library. Developers can utilize these functions and quickly deploy your mobile app for free.
Third-Party Plugin Support
Some of the most outstanding third-party plugins for React Native include:
- React Native Vector Icons
- React Native Drawer
- React Native Native Modalbox
- React Native Gifted Spinner
- React Native Selectme
- React Native Router Flux
Another notable benefit of cross-platform mobile app development with React Native has to do with modular architecture.
Modular programming is a software design method that breaks up the program's functionality into various interchangeable and independent blocks known as modules.
This technique has a few advantages: developers can dig into each other’s projects if the need arises, thanks to the flexibility it provides. It also makes the module incredibly easy when it comes to generating updates.
The intuitive modular architecture of React Native helps developers by furnishing them with the capacity to update and upgrade apps quickly. Developers can also reuse or utilize modules that work seamlessly with both mobile and web APIs.
Lots of Ready-Made Solutions and Libraries
The React Native framework is home to a plethora of commercially produced solutions and libraries that grandly facilitate mobile app development.
For instance, testing libraries – such as Enzyme, Mocha, Jest, and Chai – are versatile and famous testing tools that help software engineers write flawless and bug-free code. Tools such as Flow and PropTypes facilitate type checking while the ideal tool for linting is ESLint.
A Tight-knit Community
React Native is an open-source platform that is accessible by all. This indicates that every documentation related in one way or the other with this technology is available or open to everyone for free within the React Native tight-knit community.
Several advantages abound when you utilize innovative, community-driven technology. For instance, if you encounter any challenge after you have invested in cross-platform mobile app development with React Native, you can readily get a lot of help from developers or community experts. You can also find additional information about native or cross-platform apps online.
Another notable benefit of working with an open-source platform has to do with writing code. Developers within the React Native community can create eye-catching portfolios and share their unique experiences.
This encourages neophytes and veterans to write even better code. It is not uncommon for developers to learn new things while working actively with React Native and share their experience with members of the GitHub React Native Community, get helpful feedback, and collaborate with other developers there.
React Native is greatly supported by the social media giant, Facebook. Developers at Facebook have established an exclusive forum dedicated to a long-form conversation where other creative professionals can share their best practices, solutions, etc.
Moreover, if you need prompt answers to any questions, Reactiflux Chat is available for React Native users.
As you can see, React Native technology continues to be popular as startups, and Fortune 500 companies adopt the innovative framework. Native or cross-platform apps are no longer the problem for you because you know which option to go for based on your budget as a startup.
Cross-platform mobile app development with React Native is an approach that you should consider as a startup. This article has highlighted how React Native can be beneficial for your next startup. React Native technology will save you a lot of money and time, and will also significantly reduce the time-to-market of your product.