A Detailed Comparison Native vs Hybrid Mobile App Development: Which One to Choose?
A Detailed Comparison Native vs Hybrid Mobile App Development: Which One to Choose?

A Detailed Comparison Native vs Hybrid Mobile App Development: Which One to Choose?

Native vs Hybrid Mobile App Development

What are Native Apps and Hybrid Apps?

The 21st century is the era of mobile applications. The fact that the number of mobile app downloads has increased from 140.7 billion in 2016 to 200 billion in 2019 is an apt testament to the phenomenon’s contemporary prowess and future scope.

Mobile apps have become part and parcel of our everyday lives, and it is difficult to imagine our daily routines without the assistance of at least one mobile application. From accessing music to finding potential romantic partners, and managing finances to making payments sans cards and cash, mobile apps truly do it all, and are, indeed, a marvel of modern technology.

In a broad sense of the term, there are two types of applications based on their development method and internal functionality. Firstly, native apps are implemented for a particular device or platform, while the user has to install the appropriate software version on their device of choice. On the other hand, hybrid apps are native applications with an embedded browser.

Native Apps

Native apps are applications specifically developed for a particular platform or operating system. They are built using platform-specific programming languages and tools, allowing them to fully utilize the features and capabilities of the target platform. For example, native apps for iOS are developed using languages like Objective-C or Swift, while native apps for Android are built using Java or Kotlin. These apps offer optimized performance, and seamless user experience, and can access device functionalities such as camera, GPS, and push notifications. They are downloaded from app stores like the Apple App Store or Google Play Store and can work offline. However, developing native apps requires separate efforts for each platform.

Hybrid Apps

Hybrid apps are applications developed using web technologies like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, wrapped in a native container. They offer cross-platform compatibility, allowing a single codebase to run on multiple platforms. Hybrid apps leverage frameworks such as Apache Cordova or React Native to access native device functionalities. While they provide code reusability and app store distribution, they may have some performance limitations compared to native apps. Popular hybrid app frameworks include Ionic, Flutter, and Xamarin.

Related Blog: Mobile App Startup: How to Start a Successful Mobile App Startup?

Why Are There So Many Different Types of Applications Development?

The process of app development began with the invention of computers. The earliest applications used a client-server architecture. A server centrally located on-premise stored and processed data. Users had to install separate client applications on their devices. The client apps communicated with the server. Thus, different client application versions had to be developed and installed for each platform. For example, a Windows machine mandated a different version than a Linux machine.

However, as the internet became universal, servers and clients could be located anywhere, at any corner of the globe. Thus, web applications began to be developed to reach more users and offer more flexibility. Instead of installing client apps like previous times, users could access server functionality straight from the browser.

Simultaneously, mobile devices became a novel platform for application delivery. Users had more choices and freedom in how they wanted to access software functionality. They could use the browser or install an application on the device of their choice. Gradually because of certain challenges and new requirements, such as the need to reach multiple user groups, different modes of application development came into existence.

Related Blog: Hybrid App Development: All You Need to Know – The Ultimate Guide

Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: Key Comparisons

1. Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: Development Language

When it comes to Native mobile app development, the preferred language is compatible with iOS and Android operating systems. Some popular examples include Objective-C, Swift, and Java. On the contrary, a Hybrid app works best with web and mobile technologies, and the best languages include HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript.

2. Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: User Experience

Native applications are designed to suit individual design guidelines and are in tandem with standard practices. Besides, Native apps offer the most optimal user experience. On the other hand, the user interface and experience design are common in hybrid applications for all platforms. Besides, Hybrid apps have less customization, and thus, may not offer the most stellar user experience in terms of graphics as Native apps.

3. Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: Access to Device Features

Native applications have the ability to directly access the device components, as they have been designed using the mobile app development platform-specific guidelines. Likewise, Hybrid apps are also able to access most of the components of a device. However, in some cases, they might need external help from plugins to access them.

4. Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: Development Time

A Native app developed for different platforms requires an extensively long development time. The developers have to write the code, devise the interface, and plan the experiences and layouts of each specific platform separately. On the other hand, as a single codebase is enough to create a Hybrid app for different platforms, they are much faster and quicker to build.

5. Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: Maintenance

Native apps mandate the maintenance of a single app for different individual platforms, resulting in increased maintenance costs and lower productivity. On the other hand, with Hybrid apps, you can depend on a single resource to maintain the application, thereby reducing cost.

6. Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: Cost

Native apps are the most expensive to build, especially if the same application is required for multiple purposes. On the other hand, hybrid apps are comparatively less expensive to develop as a single codebase can be refurbished to fit in with multiple versions of the same application.

7. Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: App Store Approval Process

With Native mobile apps, you have to take approvals from the app store, therefore, you must have preemptive knowledge on how to publish an Android app on the Play Store or App Store. On the other hand, Hybrid apps come with hassle-free app store approvals, as they are accessed via a web browser.

8. Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: Offline Capability

Native apps offer offline support. On the other hand, Hybrid applications do not offer offline support, You have to wait for the Internet connection to access an app’s functionality and purpose.

9. Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: Updates and Bug Fixes

When it comes to updates or bug fixes, Hybrid apps are a better opinion from the consumer’s and developer’s vantage point, Hybrid apps have only one platform that developers can work upon, and besides, customers do not have to manually download the latest version of the apps. The key here is to have a quality assurance team. While the Native app requires QA promptness across each of the platforms individually

10. Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: Development Resources

The main development resources for Native apps include Xamarin, Flutter, Iconic, React Native, and more. On the other hand, the primary development language for Hybrid apps includes Apache Cordova, Sencha, Unity, and more.

11. Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: Examples

The main examples of Native apps include Spotify, WhatsApp, Pokemon Go, and more. Examples of Hybrid apps include Twitter, Gmail, Instagram, and more.

12. Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: Comparison Table

The main differences between Native and Hybrid apps have been tabulated below –

ParametersNative App DevelopmentHybrid App Development
Development Language Direct accessMight require external assistance sometimes
Performance Rich in performance Dependable performance
User ExperienceBest and most optimal user experienceFairly good enough user experience but less customization
Access to Device FeaturesFull access to all device features and APIsLimited access to device features through plugins or APIs
Development Time Quite extensive Comparatively lesser
MaintenanceMore maintenance requirements Lesser maintenance needs
Cost Very expensive Less expensive/cost-effective
App Store Approval Process Required approvals Does not require approvals
Offline CapabilityNative apps have offline capability Hybrid apps are not available offline
Updates and Bug FixesUpdates and bug fixes can be a bit tough to maneuver Hybrid apps are better when it comes to bug fixes and other fixes
Development Resources More development resourcesLesser development resources
Examples Walmart and Spotify Instagram and Twitter

Factors to Consider When Choosing Between Native and Hybrid Mobile Apps

The decision between a Native or Hybrid app must be daunting. But, if you have some preemptive pointers or factors to consider in mind, the process becomes easier. Thus, some of the things to keep in mind before choosing a particular framework are –

  • Time to market
  • Cost
  • User experience and performance
  • Bug fixes
  • Maintenance

Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development: Which One to Choose?

  • You should opt for Native app development if you are looking for high performance and phenomenal usability in the app. Besides, if user interface and user experience are your priority, go ahead with Native.
  • For the best third-party integrations and high speed, a Native app is the best choice. On the contrary, if you want simple standard utility and a tight budget, Hybrid apps might come in handy.
  • Speed – Native apps are a speedier loading time than Hybrid apps. So, if you want the highest performance application, like for gaming, then a Native app would be most suitable.

FAQs about Native vs. Hybrid Mobile App Development

Q1. How does the user experience differ between native and hybrid apps?

Ans. Native applications are developed especially for one platform. So, they are faster, have a superior performance graph, and are more user-friendly. Native apps are downloadable from various app stores and are not accessible through browsers. Hybrid apps are devised with technologies used for both web and native apps. The main feature of Hybrid apps is that they can be downloaded on a mobile device and can also be accessed via browsers. However, when it comes to customization, graphics, and likewise, Hybrid apps are not as responsive.

Q2. Which development approach, native or hybrid, offers better integration with device features?

Ans. When it comes to devising integration, Hybrid applications surpass Native apps,

Q3. Can you provide examples of popular apps developed using native and hybrid approaches?

Ans. The most popular native apps include Spotify, Walmart, and more. The most popular Hybrid apps are Instagram and Twitter.

Q4. Can I convert an existing native app into a hybrid app, or vice versa?

Ans. Yes, you can convert an existing native app into a hybrid app and vice versa. To convert a native app to a hybrid, an efficient and easy way is to cut down on the number of codes to be written.

Q5. Do native apps generally have better security compared to hybrid apps? Ans. Both Native and Hybrid apps are safe and secure. However, when both these development methods come face to face, Native apps stand out in terms of security. A native iOS or Android application is saved in the local mobile devices. On the other hand, the Hybrid mobile app can be accessed via multiple devices and is not specific to the user’s device. Besides, not all apps are plugin independent.


So, there we have it, a crisp overview of the differences between Native and Hybrid App Development. Native app development is most suited for situations wherein you want to deliver an enterprise-grade, premium highly secure, and high-performing application. However, if the objectives are not so tall, then Hybrid apps with cross-platform compatibility can easily do the trick.

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Besides, some of our additional fortes include product development, cloud enablement and migration, data analytics, and more. BuzzyBrains will brainstorm app development ideas that are mind-blowing, novel, and true to your requirements and aspirations. So, take the first step toward a more advanced and sophisticated digital trajectory and call us today!

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