Pros and Cons of Developing an App in HTML5 and Native Platform

There is a huge demand for mobile application development services. Use of internet on smartphones is ever increasing. When it comes to developing a mobile app, there are two options. – HTML5 or Native Platform. Which platform is best suited for your app idea is a big question and debated heavily across development community.

When our client’s approach Techliance for their mobile app development projects, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. We help them understand which platform would be – best suited for their application and why.

In this article, you will find out some general advantages and disadvantaged of building an app in HTML5 or native platform.

Pros of HTML5

  • Budget Friendly: If you are restrained by the budget, then HTML5 is the best option. HTML5 is an affordable option to build a cross platform app (An app that works on multiple operating systems).
  • Quick Turnaround:  Generally it’s quicker to develop an app in HTML5 as it uses standard HTML and CSS technology which most of the developers are well familiar with. Also, use of pre-built components speed up development process.
  • Maintainability:  Due to single code base, HTML5 apps are more manageable. It’s easier to add a new feature or to modify an existing feature as you have to change it once and deploy it once. The changes are instant and cross platform.  You do have to work out some design related issues but HTML5 has device detection capabilities and it responds gracefully to changes in screen size and display density.

Cons of HTML5

  • Your application will be inaccessible to users without a browser and network coverage.  Though most of the users do have data plans but that still is an important factor to be considered when making a decision between HTML5 and Native app development. People cannot access the application if they are network dependent.
  •  HTML5 has its compatibility issues with different browsers.  The gap is bridging as more and more browsers are adopting HTML5 as a standard. However, there are certain features which are not cross browser compatible and the user experience suffers when those features are not supported by the browser on device.
  • Native code is faster than HTML5 and it is highly debated.  Facebook has dropped HTML5 in favor of native app development due to performance reasons. So if your app performance is important to you then native is the right way to go.

Pros of Native App

  • Control: Native app is a perfect option for those who want complete control of their application. From device hardware control to gestures to performance optimization, every aspect of the app is in developer’s complete control provided the SDK support the required functionality.
  • Accessibility: The app is always a tap away. You are not dependent on data coverage (provided the app is not connecting to internet for services) and there are no browser compatibility issues.
  • Personalized: The developer can make use of device storage/local DB to offer personalized user experience which is an important differentiator between average and good apps.
  • Faster: Native code is faster and reliable.  Native SDK’s offer app profiling and performance optimization options that makes all the difference in user experience. Games, Interactive and CPU intensive apps are a great fit for native app development. Maturity: Native platforms have matured over the years and offer rich set of development libraries that helps in building the most demanding and feature rich applications. While HTML5 is catching up, the gap is large enough that for the foreseeable timeframe Native platforms will continue to beat HTML5 in complex app scenarios.

Cons of Native App

  • Expensive: The biggest disadvantage is the cost of development which is significantly higher.  You have to build an app for each platform you want to support that becomes an expensive proposition.
  • Resource Availability: You need to find developers for Android and iOS separately because an Android developer may not be expert in iOS and iOS developer may not be expert in building Android apps. It will increase the cost of developing an application with cross platform functionality. Android and iOS developers are generally more expensive and difficult to find in comparison to HTML5 developers. Finding good developers requires some understanding of development platforms and available tools and technologies that the developers must be skilled in. Having them work efficient is yet another challenge that people often complain about.
  • Multiple code-bases: It is difficult to maintain a native app because it requires several code-bases, maintenance and deployment (one per platform).

So, which one is best for my App?

Techliance can help you decide which platform is the best for building your next mobile application. Techliance has expert Android, iOS and Windows Phone app developers on staff. Contact today to get started or Get a FREE Quote!

 
  • Melina Jordan

    I know due to the device and screen diversity its difficult to have one app that works on all devices/tablets so can you please recommend any intermediate framework?

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