Top Mobile App Ideas for Your Business in 2020 and Beyond

Mobile App

How often do you look at your phone? It is definitely more than what we would like to admit. In fact, if you take a second to look, you will notice that others are also glued to their phones. An average American checks his or her phone every 12 minutes while 10% of the masses check their phone every four minutes. Now, this is inevitable as we use phones for literally everything and 90% of the time we spent it on mobile applications. Because of these factors and over 2.7 billion smart phone users of the world, it is no surprise that the mobile industry is indeed thriving. 

Mobile apps have become a billion-dollar industry. Applications help generate revenue in ways like charging users for making use of the app, providing access to premium features etc. Moreover, mobile applications are expected to generate $189 billion in revenue this year (2020). Game development companies such as King, Supercell, Bandai Namco etc. has managed to generate a revenue of 40 million dollars in 2019 alone. Developers like Google, Tinder and Pandora have managed to top the list of non-gaming developers when it comes to revenue. 

Mobile apps have become an essential part of our day to day life with 49% of people opening an app at least 11 times a day. This provides a lucrative business opportunity for mobile app developers and startups. 

How is this an Opportunity for Startups?

The smart phone revolution has opened up immense opportunities for businesses in particular. Since the majority of the population are using apps, startups can get a good percent of them to use their application. This is a great opportunity to monetize the utility of mobile apps that already exist. Apps also serve as a better way to interact with customers and transform your operations at a much speedier rate. Because most of your customers will be using smart phones more than laptops, they can use features like location, camera, sensors etc. This makes an application an important tool for marketing your startup. 

Reasons why apps are a great opportunity for startups:

  • Apps provide brand presence 
  • Stimulate user engagement with push notifications
  • Track user’s interest 
  • Expand customer base
  • Improved revenue
  • High conversion rates
  • Access to feedback and opportunity to improvise on them

This being said, not all mobile app ideas end up being successful. Your application idea has to be relevant.

1. Mobile E-Commerce App

Mobile E-Commerce

E-commerce has become a billion-dollar industry and is set to become a trillion-dollar industry in the coming years. Studies have shown that 67% of all e-commerce sales are mainly done through mobile devices. In the U.S alone 82% of the total internet users have used mobile devices to shop online more than any other medium. There is a percent of users who only use mobile devices to shop due to its convenience. Experts have also predicted that the US mobile commerce is set to increase by 420 billion dollars by 2021. Studies have also shown that consumers shopping from mobile devices spend twice as much as a normal shopper. Consumers also shop from applications that are specific to a company. These statistics go on to show that the best way to acquire sales and customers is through developing a mobile application. 

Features to be included in the app:

  • Analytics
  • Multiple payment options
  • Push notifications
  • Custom branding
  • Shopping cart
  • Social media integration 
  • Rating and feedback
  • Analytics

2. Telemedicine and Healthcare App

Telemedicine and Healthcare App

E-health has become a booming market. The telemedicine market in the US is set to reach 22 billion dollars in two years. Telemedicine services and healthcare apps are needed now more than ever. COVID-19 has changed the way we interact with everybody including healthcare professionals. Following social distancing, it has become difficult for doctors to provide consultation to individual patients in person. Professionals can make use of these apps to reach their medicine. Telemedicine benefits include making online consultation easily accessible to people who are in self-quarantine and practicing social distancing. 

Features that can be included in the app:

  • Patient question
  • Remote monitoring
  • Video consultation
  • E-prescription
  • Electronic health record
  • Patient portal

3. Fitness Application for Gyms like My Fitness Pal

Fitness Application

The global digital health industry has seen steady growth with revenue of 14.6 billion. Fitness apps provide a better way of fitness management like tracking your daily intake of calories, charting your activities, connecting with your personal trainer, setting fitness goals and recording workouts. Some apps provide multiple features in one place.

One popular fitness app is My Fitness Pal. It helps to break down ingredients and determine calorie intake with every meal. The app also helps you to log in your activities and goals which makes it easier for you to track your progress. My Fitness Pal helps users to get professional advice regarding their diet and exercise. Virtual personal training apps are a great tool for businesses to convert general members to premium customers and, at the same time, enhance the overall personal training service.

Convenience and quality of life features are what users look forward to in the modern age. An app that does the personal trainer’s job for you is the perfect motivation to overcome all the problems related to fitness problems. Additionally, all these features can be accessed from the device in your pocket making it the perfect app for health fanatics and fitness enthusiasts.

Features that make an ideal fitness app:

  • Track macros
  • Set fitness goals
  • Exercise video library
  • Chat
  • Schedule & record workout
  • Calorie counter

4. Streaming App like Netflix

Streaming App

Streaming apps have become a booming industry with over 27,000 million dollars in market volume. Netflix, YouTube and Amazon Prime have become the most popular streaming applications in 2020.

Netflix has one of the most successful business models. Netflix has become a multi-billion-dollar app with three simple plans for subscription: basic, standard and premium. Not just Netflix but other Over the top (OTT) streaming business verticals are set to reach a whopping 156.9 billion dollar mark by 2025. There are different industries that can now make use of OTT streaming services. 

Other OTT Streaming Business verticals

  • Entertainment 

The entertainment industry mainly consists of content like movies, music, sports, TV series etc. This industry relies heavily on audio and video streaming OTT apps. Applications like Spotify and Netflix have become very popular among users. The industry could benefit from OTT in the expanding market. OTT has the capabilities to target ads and tracks the response more effectively which was difficult traditionally as advertisers could never accurately predict the number of viewers watching an ad or if there was any effect on sales due to the ad. Viewers can watch the OTT media from their TV, computer, mobile or any device that has Android or iOS. The device just needs an internet connection to access the media and hassles such as cables and dishes are not required. People also have the options to watch what they want, which enables the advertisers to divide customers into different categories depending on the type of media they watch. Over-the-top media is expected to pass 150-billion-dollar revenue by 2024.

  • Education 

Another industry that has immensely benefited from OTT platforms is education. Online courses and teaching have been in existence for a long time. However, OTT platforms for e-learning has now utilized the video on demand concept wisely. While reluctant to adapt to OTT education media initially, recent events such as COVID-19 has shown how education in OTT platforms can be as efficient as traditional methods. Streaming apps play major roles in schools and colleges now. These apps are used to conduct virtual classes which would have been impossible if not for the streaming and video call technologies. The pandemic has also not stopped guest lecturers and industry experts from taking seminars in institutions as the technology has paved the way for live webinars.

  • News channels

Traditionally, News contents are broadcast through cables or satellites that can only be accessed in a scheduled time. OTT apps have worked around this limitation and enable users to watch content anytime and anywhere. 

Develop an On-Demand Streaming Service MVP

Netflix did not become a success overnight. The business model was such that they started off with basic features. Likewise, it is always better to kickstart a streaming service with an MVP. Focus on providing a platform which is easy for users to navigate. The feedback after launching the MVP will let you know what the lockdown era users are looking for.

features for a good streaming app:

  • Option to livestream
  • In-app purchases
  • Original content
  • Recommendations
  • Download and watch offline

5. Food Ordering and Delivery app like Zomato

Food Ordering and Delivery app

The food and beverages industry has become an amazing opportunity for startups due to its steady growth. The industry has also made the life of everyone, especially foodies, better in terms of having food. All thanks to Zomato, Grubhub, JUST EAT, Uber Eats and other on-demand food ordering and delivery apps for making it hassle-free.

The industry has the potential to grow by 44.23 billion dollars by 2024. In 2019, the revenue from online food delivery amounted to US$107. It has been found out that restaurants that do not have an online food delivery system can lose 70% of their customers. 

Why is a custom food ordering app useful for your restaurant?

  • Third-party commission
  • The risk of losing customers
  • Absence of third-party delivery services in your area
  • Limited customer data

Functionality of Zomato 

Zomato offers a very successful online food delivery business model. Their main source of revenue is from charging a commission from restaurants on the basis of orders. The delivery fee is split between the company and the delivery partner. Another source of income for Zomato is its subscription plan – Zomato Gold. 

Features for a hassle-free food ordering and delivery app: 

  • In-app online ordering and mobile payment
  • Discount/rewards, cashback and loyalty programs
  • Real-time GPS tracking of food delivery
  • Restaurant profile
  • Order history
  • Reviews and ratings
  • Delivery person contact info
  • Content management
  • Order management
  • Cross-interface communication

6. E-Learning app like BYJU’S

The global online education market has witnessed a steady growth from 187.877 billion dollars in 2019. It is forecasted to reach a market size of 319.167 billion dollars by 2025. This is due to the fact that the faculty worldwide has encouraged less traditional modes of teaching for better results. 

Benefits of Online Learning 

A great example of an online education app is BYJU’S. BYJU’S has seen tremendous success in the past few years. Online learning helps students to progress at a much faster rate. Most applications combine education with entertainment so that learning becomes enjoyable. 

Features for a good e-learning app:

  • Videos and interactive visuals
  • Live and prerecorded sessions 
  • Knowledge testing sessions 
  • Total syllabus
  • Adaptive learning
  • In-built chat
  • E-Learning management
  • Mobile learning management
  • Book store management

7. Bike sharing app like Jump

Bike sharing app

Another trend that has become popular in the past few years is bike sharing. These applications let you share bicycles and bikes. Public use bicycles have become very popular in China. An example of such a service is Jump which is valued to be worth $200 million.

Why is Bike Sharing a Great Idea?

Bike sharing apps are a great mobile app idea because of the increase in pollution and congestion that is caused by too many vehicles. It is a very sustainable and innovative transport option. People will no longer have to go through the hassle of bringing their vehicles everywhere and can also save up on fuel. In this time of increasing population, pollution and chaos, we need such innovative solutions.  

How Does Bike Sharing Apps Work?

These apps provide an option to the rider to locate bikes that are available in the nearest location. There are mainly two models that bike sharing apps follow. One system is the dock system. In this system, users can use the bike and return it in another dock which is designated. Docks are a kind of rack system that locks these bikes and the release is controlled by computer. The second model is dockless or free-floating. Some popular examples of bike sharing apps are, Mobike, Lime, Jump, Motivate and ofo. 

Features for a great bike sharing app:

  • Allow people to find nearby bikes 
  • Lock code
  • Payment for the trips
  • Check out trip details
  • Locking bike using bike number
  • Customer support service 

8. Parking Management App or Parked Vehicle Finder App

Parking Management App

The development of car parking as an industry dates back to the late eighteenth century in the US. Since then it has become a billion-dollar industry by reaching almost 10 billion US dollars in 2017. Increase in shopping malls and office buildings are what drives the market revenue primarily. The expansion in commercial space plays an important role in the increasing number of garages and parking lots. For instance, more than 20000 shopping malls were built in the last 20 years. The ever-increasing number of jobs, vehicles and malls is only going to increase in the coming years leading to ever-increasing revenue in the industry. It has resulted in the creation of parking management apps and smart parking systems for better convenience and productivity. The United States is still the market leader of smart parking and it seems to be so in the future as well. It is stated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics that there will be a decrease of more than 35 percent of parking enforcements jobs by 2026. 

Key Features

  • Easy search 
  • GPS
  • Street parking alerts 
  • Price comparison 
  • Booking 
  • In-app communication 

9. Grocery Delivery App 

Grocery Delivery App

The number of grocery app users is predicted to pass 30 million by the year 2022. Online delivery has surged since the pandemic lockdown. 

Why Does Your Store Need Grocery App?

Obviously, the app enables you to deliver grocery to your customers. In this age of lockdowns and social distancing, delivery apps are the heroes. These apps let one help in the fight against COVID-19. Customers do not have to queue up at stores and can order grocery from their homes. Another advantage of grocery delivery apps is that you can build your customer base. People now only opt for delivery apps to stay safe as stated earlier. You can promote products, offers and discounts through the app. Customer loyalty can also be maintained with the help of a grocery app.

Since people use applications for running errands, it is also an important opportunity for grocery businesses to bring their market online. Some of the leading grocery delivery apps are Instacart, Amazon Fresh and Big Basket. 

Features for a good grocery delivery app:

  • Coupons and loyalty programs
  • Barcode scanning and aisle locations 
  • Categories base product listing
  • Add to cart product items
  • Live order tracking
  • Manage multiple addresses and checkout features
  • Online store locator using your mobile device
  • Order history
  • Manage categories and subcategories.
  • Create/edit/delete product item
  • Manage attribute of the product
  • Ticket and their status management
  • Manage store order status
  • Set payment method from the admin dashboard

Offshore Development vs. In-House Development

For any mobile application to be successful, they have to be developed by experienced hands. You can either hire an in-house team or outsource your app development to an offshore development team. Choosing an offshore development over an in-house team is always a better option for developing applications and software. Yes, you also have to make sure that the offshore team knows what they are doing. For a great app, you need a team that has access to a highly-skilled workforce and the latest resources. Offshore teams often have developers that have many years of experience working in that specific domain. You have greater control over the custom mobile app development process and costs. Finally, no matter which mode of development you follow, the efficiency of the app comes down to the software development company. 

We at aTeamTexas create great quality custom mobile applications. That’s it. No other distractions and sugarcoating. All you have to do is come on over, pitch your idea and we deliver the product that you envisioned. 

To  get a free quote/consultation for your mobile application idea, email  sales@ateamindia.com  or fill up the form

Why your business needs a mobile app in 2020? The complete guide

mobile app

COVID 19 has left an appalling impact on all businesses. However, small businesses were affected the most. According to the SMB or Small and Medium Business Group survey of around 500 businesses, the most affected small businesses were found out. Moreover, it was also understood from a survey that the smaller the business, the harder they were hit. This is the right time for these businesses to take advantage of mobile application development. Mobile apps will help them go beyond their physical constraints and have access to a global market. A good mobile application can help these businesses create significant revenue even during the lockdown.

Growth of the Mobile App Industry

The mobile industry has witnessed a large growth during the past few years. According to emarketer an average US consumer spends more time on their phones than on TV. Smart phones top this list. The usage of smart phones will steadily increase and it will make up the majority of the media consumption in 2020 and coming years.

In 2014, an average US consumer used to spend two hours more on TV than on their phones. But according to several e-market analysts, mobile has overtaken TV. Followed by a social networking app, digital audio applications are the most used among mobile applications. New data go on to show that smart phones will continue to dominate consumer media.

Why Mobile Applications Are Becoming Increasingly Popular Today?

Mobile applications are becoming increasingly popular today. This is fueled by better mobile application development and mobile app design.

Applications are now using artificial intelligence and predictive analytics to increase their competitiveness in the market.

With better mobile app design also comes better UI and UX experience. 78% of consumers prefer to use a mobile application rather than a website because of this reason. Performance of an application is also what keeps these apps popular. The applications have to be functional and efficient. According to App Samurai, 76% of customers uninstall mobile apps due to frequent crashes. Thus, mobile app design plays an important role in the popularity of applications.

Another reason for the increasing popularity of mobile applications is due to the online shopping trend. Online shopping is the hot trend as 50% of the world’s populations have connectivity to the internet. 43% of Smart phone users find online shopping to be their top online activity.

Rise of e-commerce

According to Statista mobile phones generate 50% of the global website traffic.

This goes on to show that smart phones and mobile applications how now become an inseparable part of our life. Android users also had 2.56 million applications to choose from in the first quarter of 2020 alone. Thus, Google Play became the platform with the biggest number of apps.

Why Your Business Needs a Mobile App?

A mobile application is also a great way to reach your customers. A mobile application also opens up a new channel of revenue for businesses. It is a simple and extensive way to increase revenue. An application will help you reach the vast majority of customers at a minimum cost. Following are some of the reasons why businesses need mobile apps:

  • Increased visibility
  • Better customer loyalty
  • Better brand recognition
  • A direct marketing channel
  • Increased profits
  • Increased accessibility
  • Better customer service
  • Expanded customer base
  • Business process optimization

Why Mobile Apps Are Becoming an Integral Part of Business In 2020?

In case you are still not sure why anyone would want to build their own mobile platform, here are justifications that will help you get excellent value for money.

• Flexibility to Target Global Audience

Mobile applications provide the flexibility to target a global audience. According to Business Insider, India has become the largest market of mobile application downloads. US and Brazil follow suit. With every other person connected via the internet, people from different parts of the world can access your application. For example, translating your application into mainstream languages will help to double your global outreach. Another way in which apps help with the global audience is through sharing. Applications make it easier to share them and the in-app content. This will also help you to go beyond your local market.

• Mobile App Market is growing

The mobile app market is steadily growing and it shows no sign of going down anytime soon. With the increase in apps, competition is also increasing in the market. Businesses now have the challenge of making efficient apps to stand out.

• 50% of the World is Connected Over Internet

50% of the world is connected to internet making online commerce convenient. The Internet has had a global expansion since the 1960s. The world is changing rapidly and more people come online every year. An average of 27,000 people was online every year in the last few years alone according to Our World in Data. Owing to the recent development of telecommunication and infrastructure of internet technology, the global average internet penetration has become 59 percent. With such a large internet user base mobile apps have become the most integral means to reach people for businesses.

• Mobile Traffic

Half of the web traffic in the world is comprised of mobile accounts. Mobile devices have been making 52.6% of global website traffic since 2017. While spending time on phone users spend 90% on mobile apps and 26% of people search for apps in search engines. Use of the mobile app is steadily increasing with 58% hike every year. This will continue to grow as business app downloads are predicted to grow by 16% in the coming years. This is another reason why mobile apps have become an integral part of the business.

• Emerging Technologies

By 2020, 83% of workloads of business will be managed by technologies like AI, ML, Blockchain etc. These technologies also help create faster loading and less power consuming applications. This will help the businesses get a step ahead of their competitors.

Advantages for Business

Here are few ways that your business will reap the benefits of creating a mobile app for your customers and achieve specific business goals.

• 24/7 Availability

With a mobile application, you will be available 24/7 to your clients. Your customers can easily access you by tapping on an icon. With the app, your customers can track your services no matter what kind of business you run.

• Push Notification

Your customers can also be updated by way of push notifications. With these notifications, you can send them details regarding your new products, sales, discounts etc.

• Client Engagement through Loyalty Program and Rewards

With mobile applications, you can keep your clients engaged by giving them customer loyalty rewards. This provides them with an incentive to stay loyal to your brand.

• Customer Engagement

Customer engagement is important to maintain customer loyalty. You can build a better relationship with your customers by hearing their concerns and complaints. Apps provide online help desk provisions to fulfill this function. Business to customer communication also serves as a means for marketing your business. Apps receive the complaints and let you resolve them without any time lag. Reduced cost along with better accessibility is the key to customer engagement.

• Social Platform

It is a great idea to add social features into a mobile application. Data shows that people spend a lot of their time on social media platforms and check-in just to see how their friends are doing. This idea can be used as a marketing strategy. People can see your brand while also getting in touch with their friends. Features like messaging within the app, comments, photo sharing features etc help in engaging the users. Enabling logging into the app using Facebook and Twitter is also a great idea. This kind of marketing technique has resulted in increased sales and customer engagement.

• Increase Website Traffic

Mobile application development acts complementary to your website. Many businesses on a tight budget do not find it necessary to invest in a mobile application if they have a functional website. But an app adds on to the functionality of the website. A website can attract new users while mobile app helps you to maintain customer loyalty. Using a website usually requires you to open a browser and then find the website URL. However, with an app, you just need to touch the icon on your smart phone. Website is also a great platform for posting content, videos and pictures while the app provides a two-way communication channel.

• Brand Visibility

Over the years the way people seek services and products have greatly changed. Earlier people used to recommend other products and web browsing was also used as a way to find new products. But now, people look for products whole travelling, waiting for an appointment etc. They can grab the attention of the users and will increase the visibility of your business.

In a nutshell

The main goal of every business is to increase its customers, make their brand more popular, and increase sale and revenue. Mobile applications can attain all these goals and exponentially increase business growth while generating a lot of revenue.

In order to create amazing and effective mobile apps for your business, you are highly recommended to hire a mobile app development company that can integrate an advanced level of features and help you target the right audience through the app.

With the help of the right software development partner like aTeamTexas, we ensure to deliver a quality mobile app for your business scalability. Talk to our expert today! To know more about aTeam-India offerings, drop a mail to sales@ateamindia.com

Native VS Hybrid App : How to choose which is the best for my Product?

Native VS Hybrid App

With the emerging dependency on smartphones, the app development industry has seen tremendous growth. Technology keeps evolving and with rapid increase in innovations, developers are now gluing their eyes on the app development tools or frameworks, to minimize the app development time and get the work done more effectively.

According to the Statista, the total number of mobile applications in both the App Store and Google Play has crossed 4.1 billion mark, with 75.16% share of Android apps and 21.98% of iOS. The bar keeps increasing as 83% of businesses target to launch an app on Google Play Store, whereas 59% of respondents develop apps for Apple’s App Store.

When you think about building a mobile app, you have to make informed decisions to create an app which is powerful, efficient, as well as cost effective. And the moment you make a decision to invest in a mobile app, you’re faced with the terminologies, which is Hybrid vs Native Applications. What’s the difference between Native Apps and Hybrid Apps and which type would be most appropriate for you or your business? 

Many companies face a similar situation — What should we choose? Therefore, it is important for you to know the difference between both platforms so you can select the one which suits and fulfills your business’s purpose.

Native Apps and Hybrid Apps

In a nutshell:

The debate between choosing Native Mobile Apps vs Hybrid Mobile Apps vs Web Apps has still no clear winner because they all have their own benefits. Each Operating Platform (OP) is leading in its own way. Though developing either of them i.e. Native Android or iOS App is a costly deal, whether it is for a well-established enterprise or a startup. Which is why most of the businesses, even Startups and SMEs, choose hybrid mobile apps while developing an application, as it allows them to run the app, with a single codebase set, on multiple platforms, including iOS, Android, and Windows.

This article aims to aid your decision of choosing the right mobile application platform for your business, by providing you a sound understanding regarding the difference between native apps vs. hybrid apps, their pros and cons. Let’s figure it out!

Native App vs Hybrid App: What’s the Difference?

Native Applications are developed for a specific platform like Android, iOS or Windows. These applications are built using the framework that are compatible with the corresponding platform and are officially supported by the Operating Systems. For Android, it’s primarily Java and Kotlin, whereas for iOS, it’s Apple’s Swift or Objective-C. Native Mobile Apps have a faster and more responsive interface. They do not always require an active internet connection.

Hybrid Applications, on the other hand, are developed with the help of web technologies such as JavaScript, CSS, HTML5, combined with native elements. Basically, Hybrid Apps are platform-independent websites, which are put into native apps and then integrated with the corresponding device hardware, to make them function across multiple platforms.

Both Native and Hybrid applications can be distributed on App Store and Google Play.

Both Native and Hybrid applications

As it was mentioned earlier in the article that both have their own pros and cons, let’s have a brief view of both.

Native app Development: An overview

Native applications need to access all the functionalities of the hardware to work on the device’s OP (Operating Systems). SDK or Software Development Kit is provided to the developers by the platforms, which is a powerful combination of tools. This helps developers to create high-performance apps on a particular platform. The SDK Kit contains a certain set of tools, code samples, libraries, documentation, and guides. There are IDEs (Integrated Development Environment) which have a code editor, a compiler and a debugger, that you can use for writing and testing the software.Apple provides Xcode, whereas Google provides Android Studio.

Benefits of Native Mobile App Development

Performance

The coding in native app development is done for various platforms, thus, the app has different versions with utilized programming language, specified to each operating system. The apps are optimized for iOS and Android, keeping all the factors in mind i.e. battery use, memory etc. This makes the app run much more flawlessly with impressive speed.

Security

While hybrid or web applications rely on multiple technologies like JavaScript, HTML5 and CSS, Native apps use hardware resources efficiently and guarantee a more reliable and secure data protection.

Interactive and Intuitive

In Native apps, one specific platform’s functionalities can be tailored to give it a more unique set of elements. They inherit their respective device’s interface and allow users to navigate through the functionalities smoothly. In addition to this, Native Apps can also run in offline mode.

Accessing the Full Feature Set of Devices

Native apps allows developers to access all the features or functionalities of the Operating system and the hardware of the device, giving them full advantage to execute better user experience. For instance, Camera, microphone, GPS etc. can be accessed. Another huge advantage of Native app development is Push Notifications.

Disadvantages of Native Mobile App Development

Time-consuming Process

Native apps require more time to build because each platform needs a separate set of coding. Which means, if you are building an app for both iOS and Android, you need more time to work on both simultaneously.

Costly

The complexity of developing native apps demands more labor. Due to the tricky programming, it requires more qualified developers as well as time, hence more costly.

Require frequent updates

Frequent updates and bug fixes need to be uploaded to the app store. If users do not update the app and face any glitches, they might abandon it.

Native app Examples

·        Google Maps

·        LinkedIn

·        Twitter

·        Telegram

·        PokemonGo

Hybrid App development: An Overview 

While the basic definition of Hybrid apps was mentioned earlier, let’s dive into the variations and understand how it works.

Hybrid apps are basically native apps that act like web applications. Which means, they incorporate features of native applications and also do everything HTML5 can do. Hybrid app development is divided into two parts. First, developers build a back-end code using languages i.e. HTML, JavaScript and CSS. Then a native shell is added to load the code using WebView. Once the app is downloaded and installed on the device, the shell connects all the capabilities that the device’s platform provides, through the embedded browser in the application. End-user does not see the browser or the plug-ins which run on the back-end of the application.

Though in Hybrid App development, specialized APIs are used, which means third-party tools are necessary to access certain features and that puts a limitation to various capabilities of the application. But Hybrid apps have their own advantages which make them more popular amongst most businesses.

Benefits of Hybrid Mobile App Development

Work on multiple platforms

Hybrid apps have cross-platform capabilities which means they can run smoothly on both iOS and Android with one codebase.

Cost Effective

Hybrid apps have lower development costs as compared to Native apps because developers use web technologies and there are ready-made components available.

Fast Development process

Hybrid apps do not require different codes for different platforms. A single codebase handles both iOS and Android, which takes much less time.

Easier to update

Due to a single codebase, hybrid apps do not have to work on separate platforms to make changes. Same updates can be applied to all platforms.

Disadvantages of Hybrid Mobile App Development 

Limited Functionalities

The framework of Hybrid apps does not support or provide every feature of native apps. These apps rely on plugins which can be unreliable and have no accessibility over certain parts of the device.

Slow Performance

Hybrid apps create an additional layer between the source code and targeted mobile platform, which can create performance and debugging issues.

Poor user-experience

While hybrid apps look like native apps, they still lack the rich experience which native apps can provide. Hybrid apps may also lag 3D graphic elements.

Hybrid app examples

Let’s take a look at some top-notch applications that are Hybrid.

Instagram
Instagram

One of the leading social media apps, which allows people to share photos and videos, has very high user engagement every day, is Hybrid. It is powered by HTML5 and has the ability to support offline data.

A great example of hybrid app development, which supports rich media and lets the end-user access the features even in offline mode. Not only that, it allows you to send messages, post stories with creative tools i.e. filters, and has IGTV option as well. 

Uber
Uber

Another great example of Hybrid App is Uber. The most popular taxi-booking app, with a simple yet intuitive user interface and easy navigation tool. This user friendly hybrid application runs on m.uber.com which provides a WebView on the app and helps users book cabs hassle-free.

Gmail
Gmail

Google, a pioneer of HTML arena, leveraged its power to redefine user experience with Gmail, a hybrid app, with its advanced features. It also lets users access data offline. Along with multiple account support, it provides 15GB free data storage to store messages.

Gmail was only powered by HTML earlier but to make it more seamless, it now has native elements as well, which makes it a great hybrid app.

Evernote
evernote

As one of the most popular productivity mobile applications, Evernote is an extremely high-performing hybrid app, with an elegant and intuitive design. This app has a multi-device sync capability and its seamless functionality can be mistaken for a native app.With quick and easily accessible home screen widgets, the app lets you scan or capture anything, sync important notes, share memos and keep your thoughts organized. 

Top 3 hybrid app development framework

Flutter

Flutter

It is a mobile UI technology powered by Google, that allows you to build fast-performing hybrid apps. Flutter is an open source platform for developers to create highly-interactive cross-platform hybrid apps. It is an extremely flexible platform which provides a lot of libraries, widget, one-time writing code.

Its dynamic interface and portable GPU rendering help you work on multiple interfaces. Google Flutter uses Dart, a programming language, which draws its own interface and use native components.

We can’t call Flutter a complete Hybrid. It’s more than that providing Native experience using widgets. Hence its doesn’t uses html , javascript interface like Ionic, instead use native components that gives better experience and usability

Other Features:

– Allows you to localize the apps and achieve a wider audience.

– Supports a wide range of IDEs i.e. Virtual Studio Code, Xcode and Android Studio.

– Equipped with ARM (Advanced RISC Machines)– Allows developers to access Native Features and SDKs

Ionic
Iconic

Ionic was released in 2013 and has helped develop over a million hybrid apps since then, and is counted amongst the most popular frameworks. A technology with an inbuilt library of elements, that allows you to develop a full-fledge hybrid application. It uses JavaScript, HTML5 and CSS and focuses mainly on UI interactions, design. There are plugins which are used to connect the app to the hardware or the device.

Ionic framework is built from a combination of Cordova, AngularJS and SASS, which allows developers to create feature-rich hybrid applications with web technologies. AngularJS is a JavaScript framework, developed by Google itself, which allows you to build apps with exemplary architecture and evolve in a controlling way. Whereas, Cordova is an open-source framework, which helps reduce the risk of architectural mistakes because less coding techniques are used in the process.

The major asset of Ionic framework is it focuses on interface and builds apps which feel and look like native.

React Native
React Native

Backed by Facebook, React Native is an open source framework. In React Native, fundamental UI blocks are put together by JavaScript, which are the same as Native apps and are supported by both Android and iOS. You can also render UI components both using React native.

It primarily uses JavaScript to build hybrid apps and the apps developed in React Native are a combination of JS XML-esque i.e. JSX.

It allows you to reuse the components on the web as well as mobile platforms, which save a lot of time.

Native experience we can gain using React Native because of its bridging and so it also provides almost similar native experience as Native apps.

Other features– Can be implemented on existing apps

– Lets you see the changes made in the codebase

– Uses Native components to make the app look and feel like native

Even though Flutter and React native differ from Hybrid definition (Web View), we had placed it there because of the cross platform development from single code base and development time. Essentially they provide  native experience with widgets in flutter and using bridge in ReactNative. But when comparing to Objective C, Swift and Java, they cant be treated as Native technology aswell.

Why is time to Market important?

Building a mobile app is a time-consuming process and how soon you want your app in the market matters. Native apps take quite a lot of time to develop. While, hybrid apps have better TTM (Time to Market). A single codebase which runs everywhere is the reason behind reduced TTM. It also allows you to customize the app by making changes in a single code, which means faster updates.

Hybrid app development is a good option if you want to introduce your app before your competitors. But the standard of UX and performance of the app drops. Though Native apps might seem like a better option on paper but a lot of factors need to be considered before choosing especially in case of a startup.In the world of startups, speed is a very crucial point. How fast you can make your app available in the market determines the success of your business. Which is why Hybrid app development is the best option. Also considering, a startup’s environment can be really sensitive, iterating the product ahead of the rivals is also very important, which makes Rapid app or hybrid app prototyping crucial.

Rapid Prototyping cuts time to market

It means building a detailed model of the application and creating a visual and graphic representation or designing the concept afterwards. The idea needs to be validated early in the app development process.

Some business owners consider prototyping a waste of time and it has a number of benefits. It clarifies the requirements, users’ needs and preferences beforehand, which minimizes the potential risks. With a clear vision of what needs to be built, it also reduces the app development time.Another point which needs to be taken into account is the MVP (Minimum Variable Product)While developing an app, you need to decide which feature you want. When it comes to getting your app in the market as soon as possible with a budget and limited resources, getting your hands on every shiny feature is not possible. Rather, a small set of features which will make an impact in the market need to be picked up and executed accordingly. The features you think will make the most impact must make it to the top of the list of app’s prototype.

Considering all the factors, hybrid app development is recommended for startups and other small businesses. It has better TTM and is sufficient for the business’ purpose laid out.

Preferences of companies in mobile apps

Research shows that Small to mid-range market companies tend to choose Hybrid apps over Native app development due to its cost-effectiveness and more supportability. These can be built with common front-end technology and do not require a highly-advanced platform-specific developer, which means they can even use their existing tech team. Meanwhile, big enterprises are most likely to Native apps. They have the budget and resources to support Native app development and its maintenance or even hire experts who work within the enterprise. Some of the popular native applications by large companies include Instagram, LinkedIn, Google Maps etc.

Leading companies which use mobile apps

This is not to say that big companies completely avoid Hybrid app development. It depends on the nature of business. If a company needs to access every functionality of the device, they would go for Native, even if it is a small startup. Some of the Hybrid apps by major companies are Gmail, Amazon App Store etc.

Though Hybrid app development has some flaws, it is still gaining popularity amongst most businesses due to its easy availability and it’s making its way to become the future of app development.

Common main points to be singled out

  1. Hybrid apps are cost effective apps amongst the two.
  2. Hybrid apps take less time to build due to its single codebase.
  3. Native apps have better performance records due to its customized specifications.
  4. Native apps have better UI and are more reliable and secure.
  5. Maintenance of Hybrid apps is easier than of Native apps.
Common main points

How to Decide which is best for my Product?

If you’re looking for a direct answer, there isn’t one. Each of these mobile app development processes have their own benefits and the ultimate decision solely depends on your business’s unique needs and which one can fulfill them. You need to keep all the factors in mind i.e. Cost, Market / Target Audience, Functionalities, maintenance, resources to be used etc.

Common thing to consider

Hybrid app is best for –

If you are on a budget with limited time and resources, and do not want to maintain separate codebases, then Hybrid app is a way to go. Hybrid apps are also the best option if you are looking forward to test a market by building an MVP (Minimum Variable Product)

Native app is best for –

If you have surplus time, a big budget to hire  specialized developers and want customized features by accessing all the functionalities of the device’s hardware, then Native app development is your go-to.

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