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A hybrid app is displayed in the same way as a web page and also utilizes browsers, but does not contain browser widgets. Native apps require access to the platform that it is installed on, such as the camera and the GPS.
Let us inspect some more specific differences between the two.
Because native apps are coded with their own custom languages, they would be much more suited to support applications that require higher graphics and animation. They take advantage of the latest technologies to deliver optimal performance and smooth operation.
On the other hand, while the coding technologies used for hybrid apps are sufficient to provide satisfactory graphics, it often will not suffice to deliver high performance.
Development Cost & Time
For the development of a native app, you would need to have a separate release cycle and updates for each device the app is catered or. For this reason, it requires a longer time and a larger cost to develop. Even so, the app will only work on those specific operating systems, and the design would need to be adjusted according to each device type.
Alternatively, since a hybrid app is web-based, a single version will suffice to perform on all operating systems. Therefore, they are far more cost-effective, and with the innovation of responsive design, much more time-efficient as well.
In contrast, the user experience of hybrid apps is not nearly as advanced. For the most part, they are slower and are seldom rich in features that promote convenience.
Benefits and Drawbacks
While each has its own benefits and drawbacks, specific scenarios have to be kept in mind when making the choice. Ultimately, it will depend on the needs of your business and how the application will benefit you in terms of marketing and brand awareness.
When to Choose Native Apps
Since a native app gets installed on a device that the user will be familiar with, it will provide them with an experience that is friendly and consistent. Since they are comfortable with the device that the app is installed on, it will be a smoother transition into the use, and proficiency using the app will be much more easily achieved.
Native apps are more interactive, easier to understand, and impressionable, they deliver higher performance and also offer a higher level of security.
If you have a more flexible budget and time frame that will allow for multiple developments for different platforms to be undergone, then native apps are the way to go. They are more resource-intense than hybrid apps and can take anything from 6 months or more for it to be ready to be made public.
Native apps are also recommended for those who seek optimized graphics and API, and something high on performance.
When to Choose Hybrid Apps
Developing a hybrid app is not as intricate a process as designing a native app because they are based on web technologies. No complex prior coding or programming knowledge is necessary for its development, either. This makes them significantly cheaper and timelier to create.
Hybrid apps are compatible with multiple platforms due to responsive design innovations, so it is not necessary to build multiple versions to be used on various platforms. They also save costs in the way that the source code does not differ much, so a single developer would suffice to build future apps.
If your funds are more limited, then choosing a hybrid app might be a more viable option. They are also the best option if you need an app in a shorter period.
They are also recommended if you are in search of a single app that can span across multiple platforms without much additional development and if you want an app option that does not require vast numbers of features.