Hybrid Mobile Application Development Technologies

The advent of Digital Transformation has instigated Mobile Application Development, especially hybrid mobile app frameworks, as an integral part of the digital transformation strategy for enterprises.

Rapid release cycles, cost-effective pricing and a Native Look and Feel are the key success criteria for mobile apps in this era. To achieve all these three success criteria, Hybrid Mobile Application Development is the strategy used by enterprises for key differentiation between native vs. hybrid apps

This blog provides insights into the technology trends & evolution of Hybrid Mobile Application Development platforms with the comfort of Native look and feel.

The two most promising candidates in Hybrid Mobile Application Development frameworks with Native look and feel are:

React Native:

  • Salient Features
    • React Native scores over Android System WebView-based tools in achieving 60 FPS and a Native look & feel (e.g. Button, timer, sound, proximity, alert, calendar, ImageView, etc.) to apps
    • Target multiple platforms (Android, iOS, Web, Windows, and Mac OS) with React Native APIs

Write once use everywhere’ with React-Native

  • About
    • First announced by Facebook in 2015
    • Latest release: 0.41 in Jan 2017
  • Technical Insights
    • Uses JSX – syntax extension to JavaScript. JSX looks like a template language, but it comes with the full power of JavaScript
    • JS(npm) is the React Native CLI
  • Redux:
    • Predictable state container for JavaScript apps
    • Helps you write applications that behave consistently, run in different environments (client, server, and native), and are easy to test. On top of that, it provides a great developer experience, such as live code editing combined with a time traveling debugger
  • Flux
    • Flux is an architecture that Facebook uses internally when working with React
    • It is a new kind of architecture that complements React and the concept of unidirectional data flow

NativeScript:

  • Salient Features
    • With NativeScript and Angular 2, a single code base can be used to create web apps and native mobile apps with 100% native performance and power
    • Provides direct access to 100% of the native platform APIs via JavaScript and reuse of packages from NPM, CocoaPods, and Gradle
    • Enjoy glorious 60 FPS without being a CSS or JavaScript wizard, even on Android & iOS
  • About
    • Backed by Telerik
    • Latest release: 2.5 in Jan 2017
  • Technical Insights
    • Telerik NativeScript (tns) is the CLI
    • You can use the tns create command to scaffold apps at a variety of different starting points e.g. tsc for typescript template and ng for angular template
    • Native API Reflection (A.K.A 0-Day Access)
      • Instead of separate binding layers between NativeScript and each mobile platform API, NativeScript uses reflection to gain information and metadata about the native platform APIs
      • As JavaScript (or TypeScript/Angular) can talk directly to native code, no need to write binding layers in Objective-C, Swift or Java

Other two previous generation platforms i.e. “PhoneGap (Apache Cordova)” and “Sencha Ext JS” have been documented to provide historical insights for the journey of Hybrid Mobile App Development.

PhoneGap (Apache Cordova):

  • Salient Features
    • PhoneGap (distributed by Apache Cordova) is a Hybrid App Development Framework that allows you to compile and deploy apps across multiple platforms
    • Uses a Webview component to render the apps
    • It allows you to use standard web technologies – HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript for cross-platform development. Applications execute within wrappers targeted to each platform and rely on standards-compliant API bindings to access each device’s capabilities such as sensors, data, network status, etc.
  • About
    • Open source mobile development platform by Apache
    • Latest release: 6.x
  • Technical Insights
    • Cordova CLI is a high-level tool that allows you to build projects for many platforms at once, abstracting away much of the functionality of lower-level shell scripts. The CLI copies a common set of web assets into subdirectories for each mobile platform, makes any necessary configuration changes for each, and runs/build scripts to generate application binaries
    • The Apache Cordova project maintains a set of plugins called the Core Plugins to access the accelerometer, battery, camera, contacts, media, vibration, etc.

Sencha Ext JS

  • Sencha Ext JS is used to create data-intensive HTML5 applications using JavaScript. Ext JS leverages HTML5 features on modern browsers while maintaining compatibility and functionality for legacy browsers.
  • Salient Features
  • Features rich Data Analytics using D3, Sophisticated Data Visualization
  • Accessibility package for Section 508 compliance
  • Customizable out-of–the-box themes
  • About
    • Sencha Ext JS is made available under Commercial License or the GNU General Public License version 3 (GPLv3)
    • Latest release: 6.2.1
  • Technical Insights
    • Sencha Cmd is the cornerstone for building Ext JS applications. Cmd provides a full set of lifecycle management features including Scaffolding, Code Minification, Production build generation, and more, to complement your Sencha projects
    • IDE plugins, Themer, Architect, Inspector, Stensils provide platform for rapid development

Facebook and Telerik are spearheaded by Hybrid Application Development with “React Native” and “NativeScript” frameworks. Clearly, the industry is moving towards JavaScript frameworks-based mobile application development, leaving behind native languages (Objective C, Swift, and Java).

Please write to us at careers@nitorinfotech.com if you are interested in joining us as a Hybrid Mobile App Developer.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *