Choosing an ideal tech stack for your mobile app can be taxing in today’s rapidly evolving digital ecosystem. However, it is one of the most critical decisions when embarking on a new app development project.
A carefully chosen tech stack can make or break your mobile app. It is better to mindfully analyze the pros and cons of various options and select the right tech stack for your development needs.
You find yourself questioning: whether to build a native or a hybrid mobile app? Selecting a tech stack that meets your app development needs and fulfills objectives is like fitting the piece of a puzzle. If you choose the wrong tech stack, you‘ll come across many hurdles during the development and update phases.
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Native vs. hybrid tech stacks are the concerned topics here. So let’s take a dive to highlight the importance of choosing the right tech stack, the pros and cons of native vs. hybrid app development, and which development approach best suits your needs.
What is a Technology Stack?
Before getting into further details, let’s take a look at the brief overview of the technology stack in mobile app development.
Every product is formed as a result of specific ingredients. Right? The same goes for digital products. In the context of a software product, different layers of succinct tools, programming languages, databases, and frameworks that deliver a sleek and functional app is what we call a technology stack.
Benefits of Choosing the Right Tech Stack for Your App
- A perfect tech stack facilitates the app development process and leads us to a responsive, bug-free, and intuitive mobile app. If your app is fast, smooth, and the UX design is superior, you’ll reach more customers, which also results in high ROI.
- With a wholesome mobile tech stack, you will ace the front-end and back-end capabilities. You should keep in mind the future expansion and scalability of mobile apps and pick a tech stack considering this factor too.
- When you choose a tech stack for your app, make sure that it helps you accommodate future market needs, facilitates your app usability, and gets a steady revenue for your app.
Native Mobile App Development Tech Stacks
As its name implies, native app development means developing mobile apps for a specific platform either Android or iOS. It is considered to be the most secure and adaptive approach, but has some fair share of drawbacks.
When embarking on native app development, app developers create different apps for iOS and Android, hence increasing the cost and the hassle. Additionally, upgrading apps on various platforms requires hiring app developers from both specialties, which increases the investment.
Native apps are built on unique codebases, hence they load more quickly and can be used without a stable internet connection. Besides, some businesses still prefer native app development to cater to their target audience present on one platform more than the other.
Therefore, we need to know native app development for Android and iOS.
Native App Development – Technology Stack for Android
A native app development for Android consists of the following elements:
Programming Languages – Java vs. Kotlin
Java is a programming language used for mobile, web, and desktop app development. It comprises a Java compelling library that allows developers to take benefit from Android OS functionalities.
On the flip side, Kotlin was introduced to work with Java for Android app development. It is an alternative to the Java compiler in Android Studio.
Native apps are considered to be secure, responsive, personalized, and fast as they use the platform’s specific codes. However, it takes tremendous resources, development time, and money to build a mobile app.
Toolkit – Android Studio & Android Developer Tools
An amalgamation of suitable toolkits and frameworks is critical for a seamless app development journey. Toolkits provide a suitable environment and built-in features to maximize efficiency and optimize resources for an app development project.
We’ll take a quick overview of the two widely used toolkits in Android OS.
Android Studio is a fully integrated development environment (IDE) that makes it easier to create applications for any device using this OS. Its built-in templates and intelligent code editor increase the flexibility and speed of app development.
Android Developer Tools (ADT) is another toolkit to build great Android apps with ease. It has a collection of APIs, debuggers, libraries, and an Android emulator. In addition to this, ADT also provides test automation support for apps on Google’s platform.
Front-end UI – Android UI vs. Jetpack Compose
Android UI is a library of many attractive and useful templates that may help you save time and money. A more creative alternative is Jetpack Compose, which allows programmers to specify the components of an algorithm and make dynamic front-end features.
Native App Development – Technology Stack for iOS
Programming Languages – Objective-C vs. Swift
Objective-C is a great programming language for iOS mobile apps. Consisting of third-party libraries, Objective-C can create, edit, and update iOS apps. It is highly suitable for C-based language compatibility.
Swift, on the other hand, is an exceptional replacement for C-type languages. It offers stunning performance, smooth user experience, and intuitive features – and sometimes outperforms Object-C language.
Toolkit – for iOS Apps
The toolkits for iOS native apps include APIs, frameworks, Xcode IDE, and an iPhone simulator. There is an open-source third-party toolkit with the name of AppCode, but Xcode does the main job most of the time.
SwiftUI and UIKit are the two main frameworks that make iOS apps more attractive and user-friendly.
Hybrid Mobile App Development Tech Stacks
If your business needs a universal app, you can opt for building a hybrid app. A hybrid app is developed for both iOS and Android platforms and contains the components of native and web-based apps. It is wrapped in a lightweight “native container”, imparting some native features to the app.
Following are the most commonly used tech stacks for hybrid mobile apps:
- React Native
React Native is software that was created by Facebook and is open-source and cross-platform compatible. It has a simple UI, excellent speed, and lightning-fast development times.
Microsoft vigorously supports and maintains the open-sourced Xamarin framework. Xamarin is appropriate for easy projects and is simple to maintain.
So Who Wins the Battle of Tech Stacks: Native vs. Hybrid?
Native vs hybrid debate is not going to end anytime soon. We have explained the comparison to the best of our knowledge and research. Every development approach has its distinct pros and cons.
In general, the right choice of tech stacks depends upon several factors. You need a mobile app solution that is best at user experience, responsiveness, low cost, fast time to market, app security, complexity, ease of upscaling and updating, etc. So, how do you decide on the one technology path for your next app?
If you want a high-class user experience, superior features, exceptional performance and security, ability to use platform-specific APIs; your go-to option is a native tech stack for both iOS and Android apps. Plus, you should not mind your costs rising as the ROI will be skyrocketing in the long run. But, your time, money, and other resources will be utilized at their best.
With a hybrid app development stack, you can start with a low budget – that’s a major plus point. Furthermore, one source, cross-compatibility, and fast app development can be some of the attractive points. However, hybrid apps can be negligent towards performance and updation issues.