development framework

How to Know the Right Mobile App Development Framework

Defining Mobile App Development Framework

In simple terms, a mobile app development framework a collection of tools that help developers to create mobile applications. The framework offers a sturdy structure that boosts the process and gives support to mobile app development. The advantage of the mobile app development framework is that it is cost-effective. Let us now analyze the factors to consider when selecting the right mobile app development framework.

Factors to consider when choosing a Mobile App Development Framework

Some of the burning question when creating a mobile app are

  • Which is the best mobile app framework?
  • What is the perfect mobile app UI framework?
  • How can I select the best mobile app framework?
  • What is the best mobile app development framework?

Due to increased technology, a lot of mobile app development frameworks keep rising, and selecting the best one becomes a bit tricky. Choosing the best mobile app development framework is more than just comparing a few distinctive features but knowing what your tasks you need the framework to accomplish for you.  Before settling for one, understand the needs of your business deeply. Below are some of the tips to help you select the best mobile app development framework:

  • Design & UI for Your Mobile Apps

Think about the type of UI you need before choosing a mobile app development framework. Different business setups have different UI parameter needs; thus, analyzing your business first will give you a clear direction on the best mobile app development framework to use.

  • Mobile App Development Partner

The types of partners matter a lot when selecting the best mobile app development framework. There are many vendors in the markets offering different services and support for the framework you choose. It is advisable to conduct an analysis of the market and select the framework that will bring a positive impact on your business.

  • Closed or Open Ecosystem

There are different platforms you can choose to use during the mobile app development process. Probable, you will need a platform that is flexible, convenient in terms of speed, and easy to control. Having such considerations in mind will make you select either an open or a closed ecosystem, depending on your business functionalities.

  • Skilled personnel

Any app development process requires experienced technical staff. Now, before choosing the mobile app development framework for your business, analyze your team of experts and understand their level of skills. You have to select a framework that your team can work without facing any difficulties along the way.

  • Evolution of Ecosystem

Think whether the framework you want will offer you a chance to select new platforms and tools in the process of app development. Select a framework that grows as technology changes.

Different types of Mobile App Development Frameworks

As there are many web frameworks for creating websites and web app, there are also a wide variety of mobile app development frameworks. There are two types of mobile app development frameworks; Cross-platform, Native mobile development frameworks, and native mobile app development.

Cross-platform development is the most selected option for mobile frameworks. As for the native mobile app development case, the selection is considered when the creation and maintenance are done by the company that owns the mobile platform.

For example, in iOS, there is a software development kit used together with Xcode. On the other hand, the native Android app development software development kit is used with the Android studio. Every framework has its own software development kit, where each development kit has the preferred programming language. iOS uses Swift or Objective-C, while Android uses Java or Kotlin.

Note: Native apps are the most expensive of them all. However, they are advantageous in that they are fast and compatible with native features such as accelerators and cameras, among others. This implies that for a company to use the native app, it has to target both iOS and Android, which are the leading mobile platforms.

Targeting two mobile platforms means that there will be a need for different development teams for the business. The teams are responsible for maintaining the application after its release, adding up extra costs which make native apps to be more expensive.

Cross-platform Mobile App Development

Cross-platform mobile frameworks are meant to develop mobile applications for more than one platform. That is why they are the most selected frameworks. Most of the cross-platform app is compatible with both iOS and Android. We will learn about Xamarin, Ionic, Flutter, and React Native frameworks.

  • Xamarin

Xamarin is a cross-platform framework that uses C#. It was acquired by Microsoft in 2016 and transformed into an open-source. The fact that Xamarin uses C# makes it unique when developing cross-platform applications because it assembles to native code that works for the individual platform. On the other hand, hybrid apps use web technologies in their operations.

Advantages:

  1. You can create an even UI for all platforms with Xamarin
  2. With Xamarin, you can share the codebase across all platforms but design the UI for each platform separately
  3. With Xamarin, native UI elements enable you to create rich experiences.
  4. Any application developed with Xamarin can achieve near-native app performance.

Disadvantages

  1. Minimum support from the vendor because of issues arising between third party libraries and Xamarin integration.
  2. Developers of Xamarin must know native languages, i.e., Java/Kotlin for Android and Swift/Objective-C for iOS.
  3. Applications developed with Xamarin have a large space app sizes
  4. It is expensive for enterprises.
  • Ionic

Another cross-platform framework is Ionic. The structure is built with Apache Cordova and Angular, and it gives the developers the chance to create more than one mobile platform. All applications built on the Ionic framework can run swiftly on Android and iOS devices.

Advantages

  1. It saves time and costs
  2. It is easy to operate on apps made with Ionic apps
  3. You do not need an extra workforce to deal with the mobile app development because you can always use your existing team, making it cheaper.

Disadvantages

  1. When compared to native apps, Ionic apps perform less.
  2. Ionic framework is not suitable for applications with requirements of high graphics processing.
  • Flutter

The purpose of Flutter is to create a beautiful user interface to different cross-platform app development, making it unique among others. Flutter is basically a mobile user interface developed by Google. The flutter applications compile to form a native code unlike hybrid applications that use web views and React Native apps that use native components. The compilation to native code eliminates layers between the framework and the CPU. This gives applications made with Flutter a native approach. The Flutter has its own graphic engine known as Skia, which makes Flutter perform its functions. Google owns skia. You need Dart (an object-oriented programming language) to create Flutter

Advantages:

  1. Flutter applications are very fast
  2. Flutter saves time and money because of a single codebase used.
  3. You can view changes you make on your code and the instance you made the changes, making the debugging process more manageable.
  4. It is an open-source framework

Disadvantages:

  1. Not suitable for games and applications that require specified device functions
  2. Developers must learn new programming languages because Flutter does not use already known languages
  • React Native

React native is created with JavaScript and ReactJS programming languages. It is designed by Facebook, whose primary purpose is to build mobile applications. React Native uses native components, and it does not depend on web views. React native uses iOS or Android components when creating a user interface. This framework has JSX (JavaScript-XML) particular language that is used when creating the user interface.

Advantages:

  1. Saves time – As much as React Native is a cross-platform framework, it has a unique feature known as “Hot reloading.” The developer can view the changes made on the code instantly on the phone with the help of the hot reloading feature.
  2. It is cheap because you do not have to get an extra workforce, just like Ionic. The already existing team of developers can create mobile applications with ease using react native because they use the same techniques.
  3. React native comes with ready-made components that can be used directly in the development process. As a result, it saves time because you don’t have to build some elements from scratch.
  4. Applications created with React native are faster and can be compared with native apps due to code compilation.

Disadvantages:

  1. There is memory management failure in apps developed with React native because of JavaScript background.
  2. Complex applications made with react-native have problems in operating as compared to other cross-platform applications.
  3. Components made by third-party in native react team comes with a lot of glitches and bugs

Conclusion

Before you decide on the best mobile app framework to use, there are a lot of considerations you should bear in mind. Understand the requirements of your business, perform an analysis of your team in terms of skills, and know the specific functions related to different devices. Cross-platform frameworks are best for simple apps, and they will always save you money and time

Stuti Dhruv

About The Author

My name is Stuti Dhruv & I am senior consultant at Aalpha, primarily working on pre sales, consulting with clients on latest technology trends.